A longtime interest of his, Reid noticed in his research into the growing smart home trend that the term “Z-Wave” kept coming up in his searches. One day he saw the Samsung SmartThings Hub online and decided to jump at the chance to begin building out his connected home.
Reid Allerheiligen’s journey into the world of smart home started with his love for discovering new technology. In his free time, Reid enjoys looking for new technology trends and noticed that home automation was beginning to become more popular. A longtime interest of his, Reid noticed in his research into the growing smart home trend that the term “Z-Wave” kept coming up in his searches. One day he saw the Samsung SmartThings Hub online and decided to jump at the chance to begin building out his connected home. Reid says that he chose SmartThings because it integrates with a lot of the Z-Wave smart home devices he kept seeing online and the price point fit his budget. From there, Reid says his initial interest “just sort of snowballed into a full home automation project,” purchasing sensors and switches to begin automating and monitoring existing devices like lighting in his home.
Reid’s home now includes lots of different devices that serve a variety of control functions.
Door Lock – Reid uses his smart door lock on his front door to easily allow access to the home and monitor activity from work or on the road. “Being able to know who is punching in a code to the front door allows me to narrow down who exactly came in and at what time,” Reid says. The lock is also perfect for unexpected events where Reid needs to let a friend or neighbor into the home that may not have everyday access. “If I wanted to, I can give a friend a code that will be immediately deleted after using if they need to run in and grab something.”
Water Leak Sensor – A water leak sensor on his home’s sump pump allows Reid to receive notifications if water is detected in this important plumbing device.
Garage Door Open/Close Sensor – A sensor on Reid’s garage door allows him to note when his garage door is opened or closed, which serves as both a monitoring tool and security function. Also in his garage, Reid installed a Monoprice door sensor between the garage and mud room to further track activity in and out of the garage. A momentary switch controls the garage door to automatically close behind him in the garage, as noted by the door open/close sensor. Choreographed together, these devices making coming home and leaving simple and secure for Reid and his family.
Smart Lighting – Reid uses a multitude of smart lighting products to illuminate his home’s interior and exterior. His product roundup includes: smart light switches to turn on/off outside lights, three outlet switches and a motion sensor in both the living room and basement to trigger lights on or off when movement is present. During the holiday season and for exterior lighting, Reid uses the outlet switches to plug in his lighting and then control or set scenes that turn the lights on day or night. That means that lights aren’t left running unnecessarily during the day and are illuminated in the evenings for his family to enjoy.
“There are so many things that can be done with home automation,” Reid says on his experience. “I enjoy explaining what everything does at my house to my friends and family. Just knowing that my outside lights are always going to come on at sunset and turn off at sunrise and if it's after sunset and no one is at home when someone arrives, it'll turn on a light inside the house gives me peace of mind.”
Reid now recommends a similar setup to friends and family, and has even helped them build out their own smart homes. “My experience with the simple and easy to use and setup Smart Things hub and Z-Wave products has been excellent,” exclaims Reid. Everything works when they need to and they have all lasted a really long time in my home. I’d recommend a Z-Wave smart home to anyone.”
See more of Reid’s journey with smart home tech on his YouTube channel: DIY Reid.