A true smart home is all about an effortless, seamless experience where everything just works.
Yet behind that convenience is a host of interconnected technology and communication that quietly ensures everything functions as it should, in the blink of an eye and without second thought.
That’s just one of the major reasons professional installation and set-up of your smart home is paramount. When it comes to that set-up, the services of a Z-Wave Certified installer ensure you get the best technical capability out of your home, and a seamless operating experience now and into the future.
So, let’s start with the basics…
Smart home set-up
Setting up a smart home is not about connecting a host of appliances and hoping they just work. Instead it involves an understanding of the property’s layout, its internet capability and the best appliance language to suit the job at hand.
When we talk about language in the smart home, we are talking about the protocol that appliances use to communicate with each other and there are three major communication methods generally available today.
That’s why when you’re shopping for smart home appliances, you’ll see a host of symbols listed and chances are they relate to the following themes:
Wi-Fi – Which sees items communicate via a central router.
Z-Wave – Which is a low-frequency, high security mesh network where items communicate directly with each other.
ZigBee – Which is a higher frequency mesh network where items also network directly with each other.
At Lera Smart home Solutions our communication method of choice is Z-Wave, and here’s why…
A quick lowdown on Z-Wave
In technical terms, Z-Wave is a wireless protocol that establishes connectivity in the home. In other words, it’s the language that allows all those smart gadgets, sensors, activators and appliances to talk to each other.
First developed in 2001, Z-Wave is a known as a mesh or decentralised system where no central router is required. Instead devices talk directly to each other, with no need for a middle man and can even communicate with each other when an internet connection is not available.
Z-Wave is one of a couple of major technologies that powers the smart home, and it offers a host of benefits over other communication techniques including increased range, a high tolerance of interference and the opportunity to strengthen the network by adding more appliances.
In total Z-Wave has up to 232 nodes, which means it can handle up to 232 items chatting endlessly with each other.
Importantly, the Z-Wave network gets stronger as you add more devices, because each addition creates a new route for information to be transferred.
Z-Wave also operates at a much lower frequency than Wi-Fi but with a much greater range than Bluetooth, and has the added benefit of drawing very little power. Without exception, every single device running on Z-Wave can communicate with each other, and runs at such a low frequency it’s not subject to interference.
This is the major drawcard when it comes to its utilisation in the smart home. In short, Z-Wave has a much greater tolerance of walls, structures, solid objects and electronic signals, meaning even when items are positioned up to 100m apart, they will likely still be able to relay signals and cues.
Meanwhile, Z-Wave explains: “While Z-Wave signals easily travel through most walls, floors and ceilings, the devices can also intelligently route themselves around obstacles to attain seamless, robust, whole-home coverage”.
How it works
Although the technology behind it may be advanced, the premise of Z-Wave and its smart home capability is simple, as Z-Wave explains:
“Household products, like lights, door locks and thermostats are made “smart” when Z-Wave connectivity is added inside the product’s design, giving them the capability to communicate and perform the desired functions that you want.
“Z-Wave operates wirelessly and securely. The devices can be easily accessed and controlled remotely on your smartphone, tablet or computer so you can control your smart home from anywhere in the world! The Z-Wave hub receives a command from you via your smartphone, tablet, or computer and routes the command to the destination device.”
A mesh network
Impervious to interference from Wi-Fi and BlueTooth
Low communication latency
Ultra low power
The Z-Wave advantages at a glance
Wireless – Harnessing the power of Z-Wave does not require home owners or renters to alter their property and install additional wiring. Rather, Z-Wave devices connect to each other in a mesh network.
Affordable – Because Z-Wave does not require alterations to a property, installation is easy and affordable.
Flexible and scalable – All Z-Wave products have the capability of communicating with each other. As a new product becomes available you can simply add it to the home. That means you can start with the basics and add smart appliances, devices and products when you wish.
Reliable – The Z-Wave home automation products are not reliant on the internet to communicate. The upshot is, even if you have an internet disruption, devices within the home will still operate and perform tasks.
Available in a host of appliances
As smart home technology has become more commonplace, Z-Wave has become the communication protocol of choice for many appliances across the globe. Over 100 million Z-Wave based items are installed in homes worldwide, with over 2400 types of products currently available on the market.
Because every appliance using Z-Wave relies on the same proprietary technology, every single Z-Wave device has the capability of communicating with each other. Z-Wave further explains: “Z-Wave products are designed to work together even as new generations of products come to market”.
Critically, the fact the technology is licensed allows the security to be state-of-the-art. Z-Wave technology uses the same encryption as online banking making it the safe choice for your smart home.
Using Z-Wave is simple, reliable and secure, and installation does not require alteration to the existing wiring in your home.
Z-Wave products are founded on an ethos of being simple to deploy and easy to use. Most devices using the technology work on a plug and play basis, meaning adding features to your smart home is as simple as plugging an item in.
That said, the Z-Wave ecosystem works best when professionally installed to ensure items are positioned the optimum distance apart to enhance and strengthen the network.
Why use a Z-Wave Certified installer?
A Z-Wave Certified Installer is trained in the best practices and armed with the correct tools for successful Z-Wave installations.
Certified installers are schooled in the architecture of Z-Wave as well as how to add nodes, configure the mesh network and work with routers.
Their advanced knowledge includes education in building materials, signal attenuation, and other installer-specific issues, which ensures they are well prepared to design and implement Z-Wave networks in real life smart homes.
Using the professional services of a Z-Wave installer ensures:
- Devices are positioned at the right intervals to maximise communication capability and network strength
- Devices are omptomised and programmed to enact scenes
- Set-up can be tailored to suit your home, taking into account building materials, and eliminating signal interference
- Diagnostic tools allow for the identification of optimum device position
- Your system is designed and implemented effectively to undertake the specific tasks you want
What we do
Lera Smart Home Solutions is a Z-Wave Certified installer. That means we have been certified by the Z-Wave Alliance as a recognised expert when it comes to deploying, programming and using this technology in our smart homes.
We work with customers to create a smart home that meet their individual needs using our advanced Z-Wave knowledge to design and install an optomised Z-Wave ecosystem.
Our team takes a whole host of factors into account when doing this, including the types of tasks you want your home to perform, the type of building structure you have, and the further types of technology you may wish to deploy in the future.
Our ultimate aim is to offer a seamless, cost effective smart home solution that harnesses the power, convenience and security of Z-Wave.
Lera Smart Home Solutions is a leading installer of smart home technology in the greater Sydney region. Our team boasts over 20 years’ experience in IT networking, programming and the electrical industry.
We have sourced the most reliable and cost effective solutions from around the world to provide the very best in smart home solutions, and work with our clients to understand their needs.