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The smart way to find your Tradie

Home Automation

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Home automation is on the rise. Also referred to as structured cabling and smartwiring (TM), these systems can accomodate many options

  • Intercom
  • Multi room audio
  • Multi room TV
  • Computer networking
  • Security
  • Video monitoring
  • Automated options (lights, security, blinds & curtains, retic, air con....the list goes on)

To explain how it works, in a very basic sense, newly constructed homes are wired with coaxial cable and communications/Ethernet wiring. This then allows enormous flexibility with how the appliances in your home can be utilised. The cable is capable of carrying much larger amounts of data and can allow for music from one stereo to be played through speakers in any room and DVD’s or TV from one cable box can be played on any TV in the house. Appliances can be controlled with thermostats, timers or remotely from your computer. You can check the security camera at your front door from the security channel on your TV or on a secure internet site. There are so many options available that you will need to sit down with a professional to discuss your requirements.

Basic systems start from about $2000-$3000 but as the system is modular you can add more components as your requirements change. However the wiring must be installed at the construction stage, retrofitting is costly and time consuming, so if you think you want it........get a quote ASAP. Depending on your wishlist full home automation can cost in excess of $100,000. 

What can you get?

Home Automation can involve

  • Home Theatre/TV/Movies
  • Pay TV
  • Networking and Telecommunications
  • Security Indoor (window and room sensors, full CCTV monitoring, remote access)
  • Security Outdoor (lighting, CCTV, monitoring, remote access)
  • Keyless Entry
  • Multiroom Audio
  • Lighting
  • Garden Automation
  • Heating and Cooling

If automating your home consider the positions of the following

  • Audio jacks (phone)
  • Data jacks
  • Keypads
  • Speakers
  • The hub (this is where all cabling terminates) is normally placed in the basement/ service area or garage.
  • Siren system with sensors on windows and in rooms
  • Monitored alarm system
  • Fully monitored CCTV system with remote access

Helpful Hints

Check that your installer offers a couple of follow up visits. As with any new complex appliance it may take you a little time to work out how to integrate the system into your lifestyle and take full advantage of its capabilities. If you can have a technician come out to answer your questions once or twice over a couple of months you should be able to make the most of your purchase.

Old school security systems used the phone line to do a system check about once a week, with the roll out of the National Broadband Network, alarm systems can now use the internet and can relay information on an almost continual basis. 

Ensure there is a couple of meters between your networking system hub and the electrical breaker box. The electrical box can interfere with the networking system and cause fuzzy TV reception or breakdown in communication technology.

Wireless technology is another option, however the wireless systems can have interference problems with multiple signals and multiple hardware systems may be required which can really add up in cost. Also with the NBN rollout, wireless systems won't allow you to take full advantage of the new speeds available.

Related Topics

Planning your Electrical