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Thread: Newbie, House Renovation, Suggestions pretty please?

  1. #21
    Automated Home Jr Member
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    Hi guys

    I've had a few days where we've been that tied up in the renovations I haven't had a huge amount of time to spend on this, but I have researched all your suggestions. I've come to the unfortunate conclusion that whilst Idratek would've been perfect, my other half will quite likely kill me if I go channelling into all the nice new plaster, and get him running more wires... So, I'm going to have to stick to the more 'standalone' technologies.

    Because what I was looking for was quite muddled, I created a 'spec' sheet of what I actually want to achieve, short and long term, and it has helped narrow my thoughts a little.

    Most immediately, I would like to see if it is possible to use HA technology to fix the strange lighting setup, without running more wires. Having looked at various options, I actually think Kevin's suggestion of HomeEasy might work best - though I hate going for the 'consumer' option! I think it has the potential to sort out the immediate issues, with potential down the line for xap/xpl control, to integrate it into other things. Also, I have some vouchers entitling me to about 30-35% off the range in B&Q...if I buy before August 1st! I just spent 30 minutes in there getting familiar with the range, and understand it much clearer now.

    However, I'm struggling to work out exactly how it would work - I'm going to post the questions on the HomeEasy manufacturer forum, but there have been no posts for over a week there, so hoping someone here is familiar with the range?

    I have done a 5 minute mockup of the layout downstairs, to show how the lighting works currently - walking through the house, the double switch by the lounge door controls the lounge and dining room ceiling (this one doesn't really need to control the dining room light, so we could potentially close this off).

    As you walk into the dining room, the switch by the door turns on the under cupboard lights in the kitchen half of the room, and by the back door is a double switch that controls the dining room light and the kitchen light. Basically, it's a bit awkward.

    In an ideal world, the lounge switch would control the lounge, and maybe utilise the wireless remote technology to control a lamp also. The switch inside the kitchen/diner door would control the dining room light, kitchen light and under cupboard lights (could be 2 switches, if one of them was one of the battery-powered remote jobbies), and the switch by the back door stayed as it was.

    Apparently for a 2 way switch you have to have a Master switch, bought from B&Q, and a slave, bought online. Also, there are 2 types of switches - remote battery powered ones, that can be installed anywhere, and need pairing up with a HomeEasy receiver, or ones that replace the conventional light switches, and control the light via the mains. So, I do know more than I did...

    But, I'm not sure what I'd need and where to control the lights like this. Any ideas? Dimmable would be nice in the lounge, but not a pre-requisite. In the kitchen/diner on/off would be fine.

    Off to post in the HomeEasy forum too, just in case. Thanks in advance if anyone has an idea!

    (PS - the rest of the project is still 'active', just need to get this bit sorted asap, due to the vouchers expiring)


    Image Link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/firsttechhome/4837881686/
    Last edited by Steelercaz; 28th July 2010 at 04:26 PM. Reason: Edited to add pic

  2. #22
    Automated Home Legend chris_j_hunter's Avatar
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    another option, maybe, for the immediate problem :

    http://www.mkelectric.co.uk/Document...logue/Echo.pdf

    http://www.mkelectric.co.uk/Document...rs%20guide.pdf

    the technology used is by EnOcean (a fairly recent off-shoot of Siemens)

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
    In my sisters newbuild they even managed to put switches behind the opening door as you enter teh room...

    Take a look at that B&Q stocked HomeEasy range... does have both xAP/xPL possibilities later down your path. Switches are just stick on with batteries. Dimming is a little weird on some models (press to start and again to stop). There is an LCD remote that also allows scheduling.

    http://www.homeeasy.eu/home.php

    K
    Hi Kevin / Everyone else

    As posted previously, I've 'had' to go down a more aftermarket solution, though I'm most annoyed at myself for not sorting this all out earlier - and thus being able to install Idratek.

    I've committed to Home Easy, at least for the lighting downstairs, however, their products/peculiarities are giving me a couple of headaches, so I was wondering if you could expand on how I could potentially go down the xAP route with these devices, and therefore what other ranges would open to me to integrate into 'one' system?

    There's a lot of talk on the Home Easy forums RE xPL, but nothing RE xAP. Would it be a similar setup? (i.e. an RFXCOM transmitter/receiver setup?) I really would prefer to go down xAP if possible - and not just because I'm determined to use your Joggler app! ;-)

    Any advice on potential routes to xAP control, and therefore the other technologies that opens up would be gratefully received!
    My fledgling blog about the technology side of renovating our first house: http://firsttechhome.wordpress.com/

  4. #24
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    good luck with your project.
    I'm also thinking of using the home easy product range but not for a couple of months so i'm holdding back until i see what you make of it all, see if its any good.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steelercaz View Post
    I actually think Kevin's suggestion of HomeEasy might work best - though I hate going for the 'consumer' option! I think it has the potential to sort out the immediate issues, with potential down the line for xap/xpl control, to integrate it into other things.
    Ok, so I went with the suggestion that Kevin made some time ago, and have used Home Easy switches and remotes for my lighting control. I've solved all my problems, albeit some of them with switches that don't quite match the others looks-wise and will need some DIY'ing at a later date, but I'm still confused as to the xAP integration that Kevin and others have said is possible with this range.

    Anyone have any thoughts?

    As it stands, the switches can be controlled via remote switches, remotes, PIRs, dusk-dawn sensors and magnetic sensors. I've used a mix of switches, remotes and PIRs for mine. They can also be controlled from anywhere via the SMS hub, which I haven't purchased as yet. Also, there are talks of a couple of other ways to control them on the Home Easy forums with a Tellstick USB device and also iPhones (though this is still being worked on).

    However, I would really like to look at a system that I could integrate other technologies on, as per the first suggestions mentioned - for example X10, heating control and a security system, as well as appliance control (not as keen on the Home Easy for this purpose, sticking more to lighting control, although I do have the remote sockets in the kitchen and one in the main bedroom).

    xAP sounds perfect for this, and I've heard xPL mentioned, but I can't find anywhere any details of how I would integrate the Home Easy products, or any for that matter, into an xAP controlled system - even on the xAP site.

    Am I missing something really obvious??
    My fledgling blog about the technology side of renovating our first house: http://firsttechhome.wordpress.com/

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