Home Monitoring/ Smart Homes the thread!!!

groan wrote:

Does anyone have one of these?
https://www.wyzecam.com/

And if I bought one and had it shipped to you, would you mail it to me

stupidz won't ship to Canada...grrr...

I'll probably order one when I head down to Florida in March.

Updated version. Pretty tempted.

EDIT: Screw it. Bought it. Will catch my neighbor feeding the ferral cats after being asked multiple times to stop by the HOA's president. (I care because they keep breaking into my crawl space and having kittens under my deck. Plus they damaged my AC main trunk duct line, costing me $700)

I recently got a Logitech hub and controller and it is pretty cool. It also connects to google home so I can actually tell my google to do things for the entertainment system as well.

With a google pod can I control youtube videos on the pc? Can I load a specific playlist, skip videos, and adjust volume?

Mannish,
I'm very interested in hearing your thoughts.

MannishBoy wrote:

Updated version. Pretty tempted.

EDIT: Screw it. Bought it. Will catch my neighbor feeding the ferral cats after being asked multiple times to stop by the HOA's president. (I care because they keep breaking into my crawl space and having kittens under my deck. Plus they damaged my AC main trunk duct line, costing me $700)

Are the ferral cats ferral because they because they are feral AND have a high ferrous content?

groan wrote:

Mannish,
I'm very interested in hearing your thoughts.

MannishBoy wrote:

Updated version. Pretty tempted.

EDIT: Screw it. Bought it. Will catch my neighbor feeding the ferral cats after being asked multiple times to stop by the HOA's president. (I care because they keep breaking into my crawl space and having kittens under my deck. Plus they damaged my AC main trunk duct line, costing me $700)

I also bought it, but got an email from them saying delivery is delayed. If delivery is delayed to after April 6th I can't wait for it. My US contact will be leaving the US so I won't get it back to the motherland. still waiting for a reply from them.

groan wrote:
groan wrote:

Mannish,
I'm very interested in hearing your thoughts.

MannishBoy wrote:

Updated version. Pretty tempted.

EDIT: Screw it. Bought it. Will catch my neighbor feeding the ferral cats after being asked multiple times to stop by the HOA's president. (I care because they keep breaking into my crawl space and having kittens under my deck. Plus they damaged my AC main trunk duct line, costing me $700)

I also bought it, but got an email from them saying delivery is delayed. If delivery is delayed to after April 6th I can't wait for it. My US contact will be leaving the US so I won't get it back to the motherland. still waiting for a reply from them.

Got the same thing. Quality control issue apparently. Getting a free power/USB cable out of it. Whee. I guess.

I just bought my first set of Hue bulbs. I have them working fine for the most part. I have them in groups named 'Office' and 'Downstairs' and have two scenes called 'Daytime' & 'Nighttime' to change the color temp.

What I'm wondering is can I have a scene (or custom color temp) stick to a schedule? If I say "turn on Office" and I would like it choose the appropriate scene based on the time of day.

Is this possible with Hue or Alexa?

It is. Or at least I'm fairly sure it is. Look into the 'routines' section of the Hue app. I don't use them myself, but I'm fairly sure they're designed for the type of thing you're looking to do.

And enjoy the bulbs. We've now got a truckload of them in the house and absolutely freaking love them.

Has anyone run into issues using Alexa commands to control an Ecobee thermostat? Multiple Echo Dots simply respond with "Thermostat is off" when I try to turn it on or change tempterature. Everything else works fine with Alexa - security system (abode), lights, cameras etc. etc. Its just the Ecobee 3 giving me fits.

Somewhat related note, the Ecobee commands are kinda terrible. Too wordy.

A few months ago I came across on offer on the YI home camera, where it was £20. The place I found it had a lot of people raving about how good it was considering the price, so I jumped in.

I've got the 720p version, and I'm so impressed with it. I recently went away on holiday to Rome and set up the motion detection on it. It alerts my phone any time it detects any activity and sends me a small <10 second video (there's a cooldown period after it initially detects motion). This does have the side effect of making your heart race a bit every time it pops up on your phone though Sometimes it would pick up car lights outside when they were parking at night time, but I do have thin blinds only in the room I put it in.

It takes a 32gb SD card that allows continuous recording for a rolling 48 hours. They also offer a cloud service in which recording is automatically uploaded to their servers, but it's fairly expensive and not something I'm interested in.

I'd definitely recommend it to anyone who doesn't want to break the bank on cameras for the home.

I’m looking to take my first steps in home automation and figured the porch light and foyer light would be the easiest place to start. All I want is for the porch to turn on at dusk, off around 23:00 or so and on should I arrive home later than 23:00 via geofencing. The foyer light could be on the same schedule though I’d rather it be off when not needed. The two lights are operated by a one gang box with a rocker switch for each light located next to the front door. Our house was completely rewired 6 years ago or so we thought.

I can’t seem to find a HomeKit compatible switch that can handle both lights in one box. I also found out after pulling the current switch that this area was not rewired. The box is metal, looks smaller than a typical plastic box and the wiring appears to be original (1940). Looks as if there is one hot wire split to the two lights.

So if a smart switch isn’t the solution could I do this with a smart bulb like the Philips Hue? My concern is should someone flip one of the switches the power would be cut and the bulb(s) would no longer function as intended. Could I cap all three wires together and cover the box with a delete panel to prevent the power being cut or this asking for a potential world of trouble?

some other zach wrote:

So if a smart switch isn’t the solution could I do this with a smart bulb like the Philips Hue? My concern is should someone flip one of the switches the power would be cut and the bulb(s) would no longer function as intended. Could I cap all three wires together and cover the box with a delete panel to prevent the power being cut or this asking for a potential world of trouble?

I used smart bulbs for my front and back porch and just told my family to just leave them switched on - which has been 99% effective. I think it's mitigated by the fact that every time someone wants to turn on a porch light it's already on. Also, no one in my family ever turns off a light switch.

So with my new place I'm getting the home network setup.
Anyone know if a switch that is powered by POE (as opposed to powers other devices) exists?
I've been unlucky searching since switches with POE are so common.

Also, anyone with much experience with the Ring doorbell or updated opinions?

Unifi has switches that are powered by PoE. I recently redid my entire network, and now only my main switch (which provides PoE) is powered by an AC adapter, every downstream switch is powered by PoE.

They are 8 port only but yeah its super handy when you need to stick a switch in an entertainment area or closet.. no need for power just the Ethernet cable.

I had a couple of electricians over to the condo the last 2 days to do some rewiring, but one of the projects turned out to be more complicated than I'm prepared to tackle. Basically, the light switch in my dining area also controls the only switch to my kitchen light. To turn on the kitchen light I have to lean over the dining table, which is absurd. Long story short, it would be a giant pain to move the switch into the kitchen, so I'm looking into buying a smart bulb but I'd like to get a mountable remote that I can affix to the kitchen wall. All of the smart bulbs I can find are controlled by voice helpers or an app.

All I want is a button that'll turn the smart bulb on and off. Any ideas?

Running Man wrote:

I had a couple of electricians over to the condo the last 2 days to do some rewiring, but one of the projects turned out to be more complicated than I'm prepared to tackle. Basically, the light switch in my dining area also controls the only switch to my kitchen light. To turn on the kitchen light I have to lean over the dining table, which is absurd. Long story short, it would be a giant pain to move the switch into the kitchen, so I'm looking into buying a smart bulb but I'd like to get a mountable remote that I can affix to the kitchen wall. All of the smart bulbs I can find are controlled by voice helpers or an app.

All I want is a button that'll turn the smart bulb on and off. Any ideas?

I can tell you I have seen switches that are connected to your wifi that can be stuck anywhere.

That's probably what I'm looking for. Is it just called a smart switch then?

Right. We have a Philips Hue Smart Dimmer Switch . It works really well. No cutting drywall or anything. Just stick it to the wall. You set it up in your Hue app, but after that you can use it completely free of the app.

That's exactly what I need. Thanks much!

I picked up 2 Philips Hue Smart Dimmer Switches at Home Depot, each came with a bulb. Then I bought an extra bulb to go in the 2-socket kitchen fixture. It took forever to figure out that I didn't need to buy a Hue Bridge to connect the extra bulb to the first dimmer switch (aim the remote close to the bulb and press ON for 10 seconds til the bulb blinks 3 times...voila!). The other switch controls my dining area light.

Overall cost was about $70, a massive savings compared to what the electrician would have charged.

I got my Hello Nest installed yesterday. So far so good. Only downside, which I was aware of, is that you can't use echo devices as supplementary door chimes. Maybe in the future.

I have a vacation home and have installed the Ring alarm system along with a few spotlight cams on the back and a doorbell cam. The alarm has been easy to use and was very easy to set up. The cameras give me that sense of comfort when I want to check in and see how things look on my property.

Recently installed the Ecobee 4 and am quite happy with it. I have a single thermostat upstairs which can make heating in the basement difficult. With the Ecobee sensors, the house is able to run an average temperature through the entire house which has improved things greatly. Also nice to be able to adjust the temperature from afar so the house is comfortable when we arrive.

I just backed the U-Bolt Pro on Indiegogo.

Current SmartHome Stuff:
* Ring Doorbell Pro
* 2 ARLO Cameras to capture the yard
* 6 smart bulbs which I can control from my phone (color from yellow to white, brightness, timers)
* 2 bulbs for my front patio which has motion sensors and will come on when you get close enough (need to install these, there was a hornet's nest up there which I sprayed a couple of days back)
* 3 smart plugs. I mostly bring these out around Halloween and Christmas when I get lazy and just want everything to operate without any human intervention
*EcoBee. Maybe the 3? Not the 4, we've had it a couple of years. I've never added any of the sensors, I'm wondering if it would operate more efficiently if I did. We have 2 zones for heat, I only have the Ecobee on the main floor.