Colin Galloway is no stranger to home automation as he has been running Indigo on his Mac Mini for several years. For Colin, Indigo was easy to setup, use and had a variety of plug-ins at his disposal. He had a number of X10 devices in his home for lighting, motion detection, door and window sensors and he even integrated his swimming pool pump and lights.
"I had always been interested in automating my home but it always seemed too complicated and expensive"
Why choose Z-Wave?
Colin really liked his Indigo software because of the reliability, support and development but he was having issues with his X10 devices not communicating and were unreliable.
When Indigo added the Z-Wave protocol to their fantastic software, he wasted no time in getting on the phone with Vesternet and changing out his old X10 devices with brand new Z-Wave ones.
A few of the reasons that Colin chose Vesternet was they had videos and detailed information on installation along with support before and after the sale that is hard to find anywhere.
Colin’s System Details
Colin decided to jump straight in to work on the heating of his home. He originally wanted to do this with X10 but it seemed too daunting a task.
He purchased 9 Danfoss Living Connect Radiator Thermostats, a Secure Timer Controlled Wall Thermostat and a Secure Boiler Receiver, with help from Mark from Vesternet. He went to work installing and integrating with his Indigo, testing set points on his radiator valves..
The Danfoss Living Connect Radiator Thermostats can be turned up or down depending on the temperature readings from his EZ Motion Triple Sensors.
Colin also recently built a log cabin in his garden and controls the heating with combination of an Everspring Temperature and Humidity Sensor and Everspring On/Off Sockets to control the electric heaters.
Now he is able to regulate the temperature in his home and log cabin from anywhere in the world via his iPad & iPhone.
Colin loved the idea of the Philips Hue bulbs so when he discovered an Indigo plugin, he started to replace the existing lights. He can now turn them on/off and change the colour from his iPhone or iPad or via the Aeon Minimote. They are also set to come on late at night in the hall or landing to light the way and if a motion sensor is triggered, it will dim the light and change the hue to blue so as not to wake anyone up.
He also added the RFXtrx433E USB 433.92 MHz Transceiver and together with a plugin he can raise and lower his Somfy blinds for better use of natural light and also help with his heating.
He also uses it along with iTach Flex IP and iTach TCP/IP to IR modules to operate his home cinema. At the press of a button, the blinds are lowered, lights are dimmed, the 8 ft electric screen comes down and the projector and AV equipment are turned on for a movie with the family.
He originally had his security system set to turn inside and outside lights to a blue hue, flash them on & off, sound the Z-Wave Everspring Siren and send him an email if a door/window/motion sensor went off..
Colin purchased 2 Aeon Labs Multisensors for outdoors and 9 EZ Motion Triple Sensors for inside of the home so he could monitor the temperature, light levels & motion.
All of these levels get reported back to Indigo to make adjustments accordingly for his lighting and heating and it also sends an email/text when this has been triggered.
Colin also added Aeon Labs Door/Window Sensors & Everspring Door & Window Detectors to all doors in his home. If the alarm is triggered it will turn on the Philips Hue lights that he has in and outside the house to a red colour and flash them on and off. This is one of over 100 great plugins available with Indigo.
The alarm system can be set from his iPhone/iPad or via the Aeon Labs Key Fob. Indigo will check to see if any doors or windows are open and talk to him via speakers plugged into the Mac mini.
If any of the doors or windows are open, he will receive a text and security cameras will turn on. These camera images can then be viewed within Indigo Touch on his iOS device or Mac mini.
Everspring Smoke Detectors are set to turn on all the lights in the house, sound the siren and send a text message to his phone in case of a fire. This was recently put the test when he was away in London and got a notice on his phone that both the smoke detector and siren had gone off. Colin quickly opened Indigo Touch to check the camera in the hall and could see that it was filled with smoke and his wife and son opening the front door. Fortunately, it was just a pan that had boiled dry and was quickly dealt with but was relieved to know how well this system works.
The Aeon Labs Multisensor on the porch will turn on the light and send a text to tell him someone has come to the door in case he is away or in another part of the home.
Colin also purchased an Aeon Labs Panic Button for his elderly mother that will send an email or text straight to his phone in an emergency.
Finally, Colin installed a Fibaro Flood Sensor under the sink and will turn off the washing machine and dishwasher if triggered and send him a text message.
The list of tasks that Colin wants to automate keeps getting longer, among which is installing a Z-Wave doorbell that fits his needs. He also keeps a close eye on the plugin list at Indigo for new ideas.
If you have a home automation system that you think would be a good case study to show others what’s possible, we’d love to hear from you - email us at firstname.lastname@example.org