How do I automate an existing house

Retrofitting a smart home in existing houses

(pk) Home networking is primarily determined by the desire for more security, higher energy efficiency and increased comfort. Ultimately, the needs of the residents decide how intelligently the building services, including lighting, sun protection, alarm and security systems or even the power grid, can be controlled.

Retrofit Smart Home with cables

During a complete renovation of the building, there is the option of laying a widely branched cable network in addition to the conventional power line in order to be able to integrate all the necessary sensors and actuators. Even with inexpensive technology, the home can be transformed into a smart home. Sensors and actuators for automatically opening the windows and for controlling the heating system can often be installed by homeowners with a basic technical understanding.

Modular radio technology

Various systems have proven themselves for retrofitting buildings and differ from wired systems in that radio technology is also used for data transmission. However, this does not send permanently; A transmission only takes place if the sensor transmits impulses to the actuator via radio, for example when a light switch is operated. Most radio systems have a modular structure and can also be tailored to user needs in old buildings. As a rule, data can only be transmitted via radio if there is a certain proximity between the sensor and the actuator. Radio systems are also suitable for new buildings.

Standardized components recommended

Whether new build or renovation: Smart home systems cannot always be combined with one another. It is all the more important to choose expandable modules and standardized components.

A widespread standard for radio data transmission in the home comes from EnOcean, for example. With the HomeKit, the IT group Apple also offers products for the smart home that can be used via WiFi and the mobile phone network.

On the other hand, those providers who make the existing power grid fit for the transmission of electronic data take a pragmatic approach. One such technology is “Powerline”: with the help of an adapter, every socket becomes a data connection that can be used for devices with an Ethernet hub. An alternative to this is the “Digitalstrom” system, for which the mains adapter is already built into the household appliances themselves.

Expandable functions

If a smart home system is being considered, an expansion of the automation functions can also be considered. The building automation allows, among other things, a needs-based and timely control of heating, lighting, ventilation and air conditioning systems. Preset lighting situations can be activated as required by pressing a button.

Energy consumption (heat, electricity, water and gas) can also be displayed and recorded. In addition to energy savings, the residents also benefit from greater comfort. The fear of switched on hotplates or energy-intensive electrical appliances is thus superfluous. In addition, there is the need for more security within your own four walls. The latest systems have, among other things, an absence or holiday function, which enables the light to be switched on randomly or the shutters to be opened and closed.