The idea started back in 2014 when I attempted to install a programmable outlet switch for my front lights. I was unsuccessful with a couple different products.
Fast forward to just this past holiday season. I was in San Diego and was coming home. I sent a message to my cat sitter to leave the light on throughout the day but she had already left the house by the time I she noticed the message.
I began to look into the idea of automating the house. I figured that if I couldn’t control my outside lights, I could do the next best thing and control the indoor ones without a stand alone timer.
I did quite a bit of research and ended up installing a Wink Hub in the week between Christmas and New Years. One of the qualities I looked for was whether or not it would be compatible with my Nest thermostat and smoke detectors. This one was and the bonus was it wasn’t all that expensive.
I started with a light control and an outlet before adding a light switch. On a whim, I decided to add the switch to control the front lights and figured if it didn’t work, I would use it for another part of the house, like the kitchen lights. To be honest, my expectations were pretty low that it would work but I just had to try.
I was surprised when I flipped the circuit breaker on that I saw the blue light. Even more pleased when it actually connected to the Wink and I was able to control the lighting from my phone!
Since then, I added one more to the backyard. It wasn’t by choice. I replaced the existing light because I thought it had gone bad. Once the light was up, I still couldn’t switch it so it was back to getting a light switch that could accomodate LEDs. (I figured that was probably the reason for it not working.)
The only thing I saw that was not a dimmer type switch was a smart switch so I installed it and now it too, could be controlled remotely.
I don’t know what else I’ll end up doing… maybe adding some security features or something. For now, it is enough.