Home automation lets you:
- Control lights or heating from your phone
- Simulate occupancy for security
- Have ‘things’ happen in response to events e.g. drive and porch lights come on when you open the gates
- Monitor energy usage and reduce waste
Whether you are building a new home from the ground-up, refurbishing an existing property or simply looking to improve your existing home, there is much to be gained from home automation technologies, both in terms of comfort and efficiency.
Wired-Up AV has the expertise and experience to offer a full turnkey home automation service, including design and installation of controls for heating and lighting, security systems, CCTV, access control/gates and media.
We can offer solutions suitable for new-construction or retrofit applications – including fully wireless systems.
Major benefits of automation technologies include:
- Comfort improvements – optimised lighting and heating in every room
- Energy savings – avoid wasting heat and electricity in unoccupied rooms
- Safety and security – easily monitor status of alarms and control entry systems
- Ease of use – fewer switches and apps
For overall control we typically use Control4, Crestron or RTI. These control systems can then integrate with common third party systems such as Lutron and Heatmiser to provide fully customiseable environmental control.
Home automation isn’t just about putting all the buttons in one place – systems can interact or even work autonomously. For example, you might like to have a ‘welcome home’ scene activated when you drive through your gates when it is dark; or have a single button to turn off all lighting, stop music, close the gates and set the alarm. All this and more is possible with a well-designed and well-programmed automation system.
The exact figures varies depending on the reports you read, but studies show that (on-average) heating accounts for 25-35% of your annual energy bill. This could be significantly higher in older properties with poorer insulation.
Most homes in the UK are fitted with a single thermostat and the system is balanced with TRVs. Unless you turn the TRVs down when rooms are not in use, this means that the whole home is heated unnecessarily.
With an intelligent heating system, the temperature of each room is measured individually and heat only supplied to that room when required. This means that you don’t have to pay to heat 4 bedrooms when only the study, hallways and kitchen really need to be heated, for example. The result can be a huge saving in fuel costs and a significant carbon footprint reduction.
The most popular solution for heating control in the UK at present is Heatmiser. Wired and wireless version of the system are available and temperature sensors can be fitted discretely to rooms, whilst the thermostats are hidden in a plant area. Other solutions include Lightwave RF and Honeywell Evohome. For large or complex systems, we can interface with a building management system (BMS) to provide automation and a user-friendly interface.
Dimming lights saves energy in almost direct proption – for example, do the lights really need to be at 100% at 8pm on a summer evening? Occupany detection (PIRs, microwaves and logic) can help to ensure lights are not left on when rooms are not in use. Maximum dimming levels can be capped. Combined, these approaches can result in a noticeable cost saving.
Modern LED fittings often do not dim reliably with standard in-wall dimmers. Systems such as Lutron offer ways of dimming LEDs to low levels without flicker. Scene dimming allows presets for e.g. cooking, dining, entertaining to be recalled at the press of a button or according to an astronomical clock. Combined with an automation system, functions such as ‘welcome home’ and ‘all off’ are easily implemented.
BLINDS AND CURTAINS
Integrated blinds and curtains offer the ultimate touch of luxury. They can be controlled by lighting keypads, touchscreens, astronomic clocks and even with reference to weather or temperature, and operate not only with minimal effort but quietly and in perfect synchronisation.
INTERCOM AND ACCESS
We can provide high quality audio and video intercom systems from 2n. The Helios range is customiseable to include:
- Touchscreen contact lists
- Smartphone or keyfob proximity readers
And we can integrate the intercom with touchscreens around the home, an internal phone system and even your mobile phone/tablet.
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