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Post Christmas Home Automation Ideas

Post Christmas Home Automation Ideas

We all saw the videos and articles posted in December about how to automate lights for Christmas, right?  I personally saw my fair share and they were all awesome!  It is now mid-January and the holidays are well over.  You bought the home automation devices for holiday decorations and now they are just sitting in a drawer somewhere without purpose.  What do you with your Christmas home automation devices now?  See the article below for ideas and my uses.  Maybe it will spark some of your own automation ideas.

 

Christmas Lights And Decorations




Whether you celebrate it or another holiday during the end of December, it is always a great time of the year.  Friends and family gatherings means fun times for everyone.  There are plenty of gifts, treats, and other traditions.  Among those, decorating is one of the most fun.  Whether it is hanging stockings above the fireplace or placing lights inside and/or outside of the house, it always means Christmas time is near.  In my limited space, I placed lights over my fireplace mantle, on my balcony, and around my Christmas tree.  Once that was done, I knew there was a way to have some home automation fun.

Home Automation During Christmas

I saw all the videos about how fun it would be to automate all your Christmas/holiday decorations.  So that is what I did.  I used my VeraLite, a binary (on/off) plugin module, and a dimmer plugin module.  Together I had all the right Christmas lighting home automation hardware.  Then came the automation scheduling.

Automation Schedule

The entire reason for automating the Christmas decorations was to not have to manually turn them on and off.  I wrote a Tasker script to schedule the Christmas lights during specific days and times of the week.  I also wrote an IFTTT applet to voice control my lights outside of those specific times using my Google Home.  Since creating the voice commands, my girlfriend used it more than I did!  I even impressed my girlfriend’s parents with it while they visited for the holidays!  In fact, they had just as much fun turning the lights on and off using the Google Home.  See my video below of my voice controlled Christmas Lights using Google Home.

Post Christmas Home Automation

The Christmas home automation served it’s purpose perfectly.  They were also fun for everyone.  But sadly the holidays are now over, and the Christmas decorations came down.  With that, the so did the automation and scheduling with it.  I did not want my devices to go to waste so I repurposed them.  Below are a few devices I now automate, some from after Christmas and others I’ve had for awhile.  While some ideas are useful to almost anyone, some are specific to certain people.

Espresso Machine

I got an espresso machine for Christmas.  I love it but I am supposed to warm it up beforehand.  This takes time in my busy morning, especially on gym days when I am rushing to get out of the house.  I solved this problem by creating a Tasker profile to power the z-wave switch Upon alarm dismiss.  By the time I get out of bed and to the kitchen, my espresso machine is ready to fuel my workouts.

Tasker Event Context Used:

  • Alarm Done
  • AutoLocation Geofence:
    • Name: “Home”
    • Status: “Inside”

Humidifier




Again, it’s been a little dry for me lately over here.  I have woken up too many mornings to a sore throat due and dry mouth because the air has been so dry.  To remedy this, I bought a humidifier.  I used another binary plugin z-wave switch to automate when to turn it on and off.  I automate the humidifier power with my existing “home” geofence profile.  When I come home, it turns on and when I leave for work, it turns off.  It is simple and works every time.

Tasker Event Context Used:

  • Time:
    • From: “20:00 to 04:00”
  • AutoLocation Geofence:
    • Name: “Home”
    • Status: “Inside”

Space Heater

I live in Southern California and while it is not the coldest compared to other parts of the world, we still find a way to complain about it.  I don’t want to turn on the heater for the entire house when the space heater can do the trick in the bedroom every morning.  The space heater stays plugged into a binary plugin z-wave switch and turns on upon alarm dismiss, while at home.  It’s perfect and my girlfriend doesn’t have to be in the cold every morning!

Tasker Event Context Used:

  • Alarm Done
  • AutoLocation Geofence:
    • Name: “Home”
    • Status: “Inside”

Lights/Lamps

Lights and lamps are the first thing someone thinks about in home automation.  They are generally the first to become automated.  I installed in-wall dimmer switches inside most lights and lamps. While inside my “home” geofence, I have access to an AutoNotification notification.  It is populated with buttons to turn on or off all the lights.

Tasker Event Context Used:

  • AutoLocation Geofence:
    • Name: “Home”
    • Status: “Inside”

Other Devices

Hopefully I have given you some insight as to what to do with your extra Christmas home automation devices.  If I have not, check out the list below for even more ideas to spark interest:

  • TVs
  • Coffee Makers
  • Any Appliance
  • Any Light/Lamp
  • Fan

What did you think???