Smart home technologies like light switches, thermostats, and Amazon Echos are becoming more common in households. There are several different ways for smart devices to communicate with one another. Typically, smart devices are controlled from an app on your phone or tablet. But how is the app able to tell different devices what to do?
One of the most common methods for connecting smart devices is by using something called Z-Wave.
Z-Wave is a wireless communications protocol that’s used primarily for home automation.
That sounds extremely complicated, but it’s not. It’s a wireless form of communication, using the same principle as Wi-Fi. Basically, Z-Wave is how your smart home devices can communicate with one another. Like Wi-Fi sends and receives information, Z-Wave sends and shares information and commands between devices.
There are currently 1,700 certified products that can be used with Z-Wave. Currently, 9 out of 10 home security companies rely on Z-Wave products.
Why Z-Wave Instead of Wi-Fi?
If your Wi-Fi is connected to all of your devices, including your phones, tablets, computers, televisions, or smart technologies, your Wi-Fi is pretty crowded. This means that the more devices that are using the Wi-Fi connection, the slower the connection will be. By using Z-Wave, you’re not slowing down your Wi-Fi connection.
Another feature that sets Z-Wave apart is that it’s more secure. Wi-Fi is more susceptible to hackers. You definitely don’t want someone to be able to unlock your doors or turn your lights on and off.
Z-Wave operates by assigning each device a unique ID within its network. A Z-Wave hub interconnects and commands the entire network. Because of each device’s unique ID, it’s extremely difficult, if not impossible, for someone to access and control your smart devices.
Z-Wave In Your Smart House
You can use Z-Wave technology with smart devices for the following:
- Control your thermostat and schedule the temperature for when you’re home or away
- Turn your lights on or off or adjust brightness
- Control your security system and lock or unlock doors
- Connect your Amazon Echo to your smart devices and give her commands
- Adjust and set timers for window shades
- Receive alerts when motion sensors are activated
One of the most reported homeowner’s insurance claims is water damage. There are devices that can alert you if a pipe burst so that you can address the situation immediately.
Z-Wave technology can help save your family’s lives by detecting fatal carbon monoxide or smoke.
By using a monitoring service like Alarm Relay, you can manage your home and all of your devices with an app. Alarm Relay will also notify you if anything is out of the ordinary, which can save you money and keep you secure.
Alarm Relay, Honeywell, and SecureSmart all have apps that are compatible with your Z-Wave devices. If you’re in need of an alarm system, the Helix security system is Z-Wave compatible, as well.