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Thread: which wireless window contact/sensors for DIY Home Automation system?

  1. #11
    Automated Home Sr Member b_weijenberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yesyes View Post
    This looks also quite good so far, though I can't find any info on the SDK.
    Chris
    The DS90 is an X10 security sensor and is received as Type: Security1, Sub type: X10 security door/window sensor.

    Another option are the HomeEasy (AC) door/window sensors. These are cheap but have a problem that they transmit RF packets for about 3 to 5 seconds. During this period no other RF signals can be send. If you want to switch an RF module in response to this sensor it will be delayed.
    To know why, read this http://www.domoticaforum.eu/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=7337
    Another advantage of the X10 DS90 above the HomeEasy sensor is that the DS90 transmit every 2 hrs an alive signal and it reports the battery status (full/empty).

  2. #12
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    Another thing to be aware of is that some of the cheaper wireless door / window sensors will only give you an open signal, not a closed one, and also most are not of the type that can be polled. You will need to listen all the time and track the state of the sensors yourself.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris_j_hunter View Post
    >a lot more research needs to be done ...

    do you have some overall objectives - or is it going to grow ad hoc ??
    The objective for the window / door sensors is for me to be able to see at any time for each individual window / door whether it is open or closed (I'd prefer locked / unlocked, but open / closed is good enough). A few seconds delay for any state change to "propagate" through the system is acceptable. Basically, when I leave the house or go to sleep I want to see if everything is closed and if not, which window / door is still open. In my case this has to be wireless between window / door and "the system" as I cannot run cables to each window / door.

    The whole system is growing in an ad-hoc fashion depending on what ideas my friend or I come up with. So far we have temperature and humidity sensors in every room (well, almost, I'm still building a few more sensors), we have RGB LEDs we can control remotely (most of them in the form of cove lighting with those RGB LED strips), IR transmitters and receivers that act like IR remote controls, mains switches (relays) to switch non-dimmable LED lights on and off and a device that reads my friend's wired window / door contacts (he built a new house, so he was able to run wires and have the sensors integrated inside the window frames). Those are all designed and built by myself and based on Arduino Minis and 433MHz RF transceiver modules. All these devices communicate with my software (basically a data packet router) running on my HA server using a protocol I came up with. I also added support for Current Cost energy monitors reading and parsing the XML stream they send via serial port. Support for other devices / protocols can be added easily by writing a new "port DLL".
    The main objectives of this whole system are:
    - develop as much as possible ourselves (because we can and because it's fun and cheaper) ;-)
    - all the communication and data storage is local, not on some manufacturer's servers. We don't want any 3rd party to (potentially) collect our data.
    - web front end with LCARS (Star Trek) interface (yeah, we're both Trekies)

    Everything else we basically make up as we go along and have new ideas. We've been developing this for just over 2 years now...

  4. #14
    Automated Home Jr Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnwharrison View Post
    Another thing to be aware of is that some of the cheaper wireless door / window sensors will only give you an open signal, not a closed one, and also most are not of the type that can be polled. You will need to listen all the time and track the state of the sensors yourself.
    That's a good hint, thanks. it would be no problem to listen all the time (I already do that with the other devices I developed) and keep track. I could build in a "manual sync" function in case I lose communication and miss some state changes. However, if they don't send a closed signal, how would I know when the window has been closed again? Would the absence of an open signal mean that it is closed?

  5. #15
    Automated Home Legend chris_j_hunter's Avatar
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    >when I leave the house or go to sleep I want to see if everything is closed and if not ...

    we did that with our set-up, too, but also with the intercom speaking the information - seemed a good idea at the time, but we've found it better than that ... very convenient check, plus we also use them for telling us when doors have been left open for more than seems appropriate (larder door, doors to the outside, etc, depending on circumstances), when children are going where they shouldn't, when visitors let themselves in, etc, etc ... ie: way more than we first envisaged ...

    >temperature and humidity sensors in every room ...

    how about light-level & motion sensors, too ?
    Last edited by chris_j_hunter; 18th May 2014 at 10:07 PM.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris_j_hunter View Post
    how about light-level & motion sensors, too ?
    maybe later... ;-)
    I might install a motion sensor in the hall to switch the lights on.
    There will definitely be an outdoor light level sensor. That would allow me to trigger certain actions when it gets dark or light outside. I don't think it makes sense inside.

  7. #17
    Automated Home Ninja Andrew Millne's Avatar
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    I've got a few estimote beacons as a developer preview. The windows in my room would make good locations for trilateration so I'm considering dual purposing these as they have an accelerometer built in. Probably no good for determining open close state but could work for security purposes to detect an opening window. If you're listening Idratek folks I have a second set of 3 you can loan PM me if interested.

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