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Smart Heating part3: smart underfloor heating

The principle of underfloor heating is: there are tubes laid in concrete of floor through which water heated by gas boiler is circulating. Heated pipes are heating floor concrete and then warm floor of a room heats all space. The pipes in the floor are installed in a certain order to form loops, the beginning and the end of each loop is connected to central manifold. Continue reading Smart Heating part3: smart underfloor heating

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Smart Heating part2: how to connect thermostat and smart radiator valves

This is part 2 of blog series about smart heating system installation. You can find part 1 here: Smart Heating part 1: choosing boiler and thermostat

To install radiator valves of Netatmo is very easy. But for this setup i need to have one Thermostat connected to boiler.  As radiator valves connects to thermostat for control of boiler. Boiler is turned on when heat is needed and turned off when the temperature in the room reach setpoint.

Netatmo Thermostat has to parts. One is the thermostat itself and the second part is wireless relay. Continue reading Smart Heating part2: how to connect thermostat and smart radiator valves

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Smart Heating part 1: choosing boiler and thermostat

Heating is very important part of home. You have to maintain optimal temperature for maximum comfort at home. With this in mind, while renovating home I have redone all the heating system with a modern one. Now there is underfloor water heating in basement and first floor, radiators in the second floor and garage. New boiler, water heater and all the pipes and accessories.

This is a part 1 of a 4-part blog series.

The biggest challenge was, that in my smart home I want to control every element of heating system remote, by phone, watch and by voice.
First of all, had to choose gas boiler.
Mainly there was 3 major brands to choose from for me: Viessmann, Buderus, Junkers.
Viessmann has the biggest price tag if the boiler has capabilities for some automation.
Junkers is the simplest boiler with no smart automation integrated. And the Buderus is in the middle of two of them. All other parameters of competing models of these 3 brands are almost the same. Maybe it is just some of marketing stuff about the gas burners and their efficiency.
Viesmmann with automation capabilities has too high price tag, as almost the same functions and parameters are present in significantly cheaper Buderus model. With this in mind I have bought Buderus Logomax Plus GB172i-24 gas boiler. Continue reading Smart Heating part 1: choosing boiler and thermostat

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Smart Plug

While building smart home you will come to point when you will want to add remote control to device or appliance which does not have smart capabilities. It may be something like desk lamp, fan, monitor or something similar. You can do it with smart plug. The only requirement is needed, that when you plug in desired device to electricity it turned on without requiring pressing its physical button.

There are many options of smart plus in the wild. Some has only on/off possibilities: WeMo, TP-Link, D-Link, iDevices has smart plugs of this kind. Some are smarter and can show you how much electricity the plugged-in device is using. Major manufacturer of smarter plugs are: Elgato, WeMo, Belkin, iHome. But if you look for HomeKit integration, there are smaller number to choose from.

Now I am using Elgato Eve Energy smart plug. It has HomeKit support, energy monitoring and works over Bluetooth. Continue reading Smart Plug

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Measuring air quality

Air quality at home is important, as important humidity and temperature. To measure it all i am using Netatmo Healthy Home Coach. It is smart indoor air quality monitor, which is easy to install and intuitive to use.  It can measure temperature, humidity CO2 levels and noise level. Continue reading Measuring air quality

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Apple Home App setup

HomeKit is the protocol for smart home devices secure communication to each other. And the beauty of it is that all HomeKit compatible devices can be managed from one application on the phone – Home by Apple. One app to manage it all means less mess and less frustration for opening the right app to unlock the door or to turn on the lights. All HomeKit enabled devices can be controlled by voice with Siri.

It is recommended (I even would say it is mandatory) to have Apple TV gen3 or gen4 at home for remote access to HomeKit devices. Apple TV as a bridge for HomeKit is good not only for remote access. If some gadgets, for example August smart Door lock or Elgato Eve thermometer works over Bluetooth and does not have dedicated bridge – they can automatically connect to Apple TV by Bluetooth and to be ready for access from anywhere. Continue reading Apple Home App setup

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Smart Door Lock

Smart home can’t be smart without smart door lock. Door has to unlock simply by walking to it with your phone in the pocket. I think that one of the best for it is August Smart Lock. It is compatible with HomeKit, easy to install and is reliable. This Smart Lock does not require to change your lock. If lock is standard deadbolt, it is easy to retrofit. From outside any part of door lock is not changed and can be operated by key. In the inside smart lock replaces thumb turn. Continue reading Smart Door Lock