Tame Old Man Winter with this Simple Z-Wave "Hack"

Now that Thanksgiving is officially over, most of the US focuses on some type of cold(er) weather that puts us in a good holiday mood. But what about your furnace? Does it keep running even with the doors open? As guests, children, and deliverymen conspire to keep your doors ajar, there's an easy automation setup that will help tame those energy bills. And this setup will also allow programming of your thermostat to account for changing holiday schedules; work, vacation. You can even manually monitor the temperature from work or while on vacation.

This setup will run under $220 and allows you to automatically turn the heat off when the door is opened for more than a pre-set amount of time. Like everything with Z-Wave devices, you can modify this as needed to fit your lifestyle. And while this is a great start, for a nominal additional cost, you can add more temperature sensors to get notifications of freezing temps that may bust your pipes while you're away.



The 3 pieces of this project are a WINK 2 hub, a GC-TBZ48 Z-Wave thermostat from Go Control, and a ZW120 Door/Window sensor from Aeon Labs.

Replace your existing thermostat with the Go Control (instructions on how to do that are here) After downloading the free WINK 2 App, setting up the WINK 2, add the stat and sensor to your network. Check out my blog WINK 2 OVERVIEW for a few tips.

Something new regarding sensors that wasn't in my previous entries, you can select the type of door for the best calibration of the device (you'll see this screen when you're just about done adding the sensor).





By this point you'll be able to control the stat from your smart phone, but that's no fun. Let's create a simple Robot (the WINK word for scene, or automation) to keep that warm air inside.

First, create a new robot by selecting the Robot at the bottom of the main screen, then selecting the + for "Create a New Robot".

You'll have a few choices, including schedule, device, or geocaching. We're going to have the sensor drive this Robot, so choose Product or Sensor.



You have many choices to set up the Robot. In this example I chose, if Any Entry Door Sensor, at any time of day, is open for more than 10 minutes, then turn the thermostat from Heat to Off, and notify me via push notifications from my WINK 2 App on my phone.

Having a grace period (in this case, 10 minutes) to allow the kids or pets to enter or exit the home allows the heat to run for a little while.

    

You can create a similar Robot to turn the heat back on after all the doors are closed for more than 10 minutes. This system will work with windows too; you just add as many sensors as your home needs and add those sensors to the Robot.

Do you want a notification if your crawl space or basement is experiencing flooding or freezing temps?  There's a host of sensor that can help out here as well.  Check out the Fortezz Water and Temperature Sensor and Fibaro Flood Sensor with Temperature Monitoring

Did I get it right? Do you have any questions or issues?

In the bottom right corner of this website is a link to Leave me a Message.

Alternately . . . Ask An Expert by filling out this form, and one of our experts will get back to you with an answer.

I hope this was helpful. Please share this, and check out my other blogs!

 
 

Recommended Topics


 
0