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Aug 22, 2012

Automated Home Lighting Controls

Automated Home Lighting Controls
Automated lighting systems can help reduce home energy consumption costs quite significantly via energy management. Homeowners can use these systems to automate the control of individual lights, a whole set of lights, and even appliances such as fans and dimmers. A home lighting control can be used to turn lights on and off automatically on a set daily time schedule, or they can be set to turn lights on and off depending on the time of day or the lighting conditions inside a room or building. Many lighting control systems also allow homeowners to automatically turn lights on only when a room is occupied, and to dim or shut them off when the room is unoccupied.

Major Cost Savings

Lighting systems represent a major portion of home energy costs. In fact, some studies show that lighting systems account for close to 60 percent of the total energy consumption costs in a home. A home lighting control system can reduce this cost substantially by enabling timed control of all interior and exterior lights in your home, and by eliminating unnecessary use of lighting systems. According to some estimates, an automated system can help reduce home energy costs by up to 10 percent per year and increase bulb life by up to 150 percent on average. Some vendors of home lighting systems claim that automation can save homeowners between $8 and $10 per bulb per year.

Convenience and Comfort

Remote control lights are a fundamental component of most smart home automation systems these days. Many vendors offer automated lighting control systems that can be integrated into new buildings as well as existing homes. In addition to cost savings, remote control lights also add an element of convenience and comfort for homeowners. Most modern lighting systems can be remotely controlled through a central console. Often, these consoles are accessible via the Internet and smartphones. So, homeowners can control their lighting systems even when they are not at home using their mobile devices or Internet-connected PCs. With many smart home systems, the console that is used to control lighting can also be used to control other systems, like the heating and air conditioning system, and the residential security monitoring system.

Types of Lighting Control Systems

Lighting controls can come in different formats and with different functions. Entry-level systems, such as Skylink’s $38 SkylinkHome and SkylinkPad, allow homeowners to remotely control the lighting in their home using a basic push button remote. The system consists of a remote controller and a plug-in dimmer that goes into any standard AC outlet. Using the system, homeowners can turn on, turn off and dim their home lights from a distance of up to 500 feet away.

Mid-Range and High-End Systems

Most mid-range and higher-end systems are typically based on Z-wave wireless technology and allow homeowners to control their lights through the Internet or their smartphones. One example of a mid-range system is Leviton’s $197 Vizia RF 600 scene capable dimmer technology. The IP-enabled product features adjustable fade rates and functions that allow homeowners to preset lighting levels based on the type of activity that is going on in a room. Other products, such as Lutron’s higher-end Maestro Series, support features such as room occupancy and vacancy sensors, motion sensors and timed controls that automatically calculate sunset and sunrise times each day in order to turn interior and exterior lights on and off. Such high-end lighting controls can cost thousands of dollars to purchase and install.

Installing a Home Security System?

Did you know that installing a security system is not only a great way to help minimize risk of a break-in or burglary, but it may also lower your home insurance payments? Insurance companies recognize that homes are indeed more secure when they have a home security system installed by one of the top alarm companies.

TopAlarmCompanies.com offers quotes from only the best, most well known business and home security companies. By working with leading providers like FrontPoint, Vivint, GE, Protect America, and, of course, Protect Your Home - ADT Authorized Premier Provider, we can assure you that we are providing quotes from the highest rated security companies in the business.

Not to mention, these six companies use state-of-the-art technology to keep up with the changing market. Features like wireless alarms and touch screen control panels are what consumers want, and these companies offer them along with expert technicians and a skilled customer support staff.

Protect America has been given a five star rating for four years in a row by TopConsumerReviews.com. With their line of affordable home security packages starting at about $30 and free installation, Protect America is offering home security at a price most Americans can afford.

Vivint is one of the most modern, high-tech home security companies. With services that integrate your security system with energy management and home automation, Vivint makes a compelling, "green" option for people that want a top home security company.

Protect Your Home - ADT Authorized Premier Provider - ADT is certainly the largest and most well known security provider.

Protection 1 trails only ADT in the number of customers it has in the US. And, with 60 branch offices, Protection 1 also has locations in nearly every US state, making them a home and business security company that you can even contact in person if need be.

FrontPoint Security touts that their wireless security systems are "virtually undefeatable." The company also notes that it has no hidden fees, all the while providing modern, high-tech home security features like a security app for your smart phone.

Security Networks boasts an A+ Better Business Bureau rating is just one indication of the great customer service they offer. Making use of services like WeatherNet for alerts on dangerous weather, and IDnet for identity protection, Security Networks truly strives to make all aspects of your life more secure, not just your home.