How to Plan Your Home Automation Installation
A sound home automation installation must be evolutionary. You don’t need to do everything at once, but during the work, it is essential to anticipate to avoid having to do it again later. What are the steps to follow? What is the budget for a home automation installation? Let’s see closer below.
Which steps to take to anticipate a home automation installation?
Your budget may not allow you to finance both the pre-wiring and the purchase of your home automation equipment in one go.
Determine your needs and desires
Home automation offers wide possibilities: comfort, energy savings, home maintenance, remote control, multiroom… The first step is to ask yourself the right questions: what is the objective of this installation, what benefits do I expect from it, and what are my priorities in the short, medium and long term?
The best thing to do is focus on the infrastructure if you consider integrating home automation functions later.
The pre-wiring step must be done as soon as you build or renovate your home to avoid additional and more important work later on. Even if wireless home automation has made great progress, it is essential to provide a wired power supply for the equipment and good network coverage (ideally wired, possibly carrier current or at least a good Wi-Fi coverage of the whole house).
Buy the devices
You can then buy (or just put in place) the home automation devices. The hardest part will be done, and everything will be ready for your heating system, lighting, appliances, etc.
What should be planned for the construction phase?
In the case of a new project or a complete renovation, it is possible to opt for wired home automation solutions, choose connectable equipment (boiler, roller shutters, household appliances…) and deploy a very high-speed wired computer network. In light renovation, it is necessary to adapt to the existing and find the right compromises.
Before installing any home automation system, remember to leave enough space to accommodate the electrical panel and the Voice-Data-Image communication box with enough room to accommodate the home automation modules and the router, for example.
If you want to control the shutters via the home automation system, plan an additional empty shaft to power each motor.
Study the possibilities available to run the cables: lining, slab, crawl space, attic… To anticipate the wiring that will be necessary, you can have them embedded behind the baseboards. This system has the great advantage of keeping the cables always accessible.
Good to know: to avoid tedious work during renovations, many manufacturers have come up with alternative systems to wired solutions, some using the existing electrical network (carrier current), others wirelessly using radio frequencies or infrared.
What is the budget for a home automation installation?
The budget for a connected home varies according to the level of installation you want and its scope. Programmable outlets, for example, are very affordable (between $20 and $50).
You can opt for a custom installation for a complete system that covers the entire house or almost. Since professional help may be required, the budget can quickly climb to $300 for a simple starter kit (remote control of outlets, etc.) and $5,000 for a complete kit that controls the entire house.
It is, therefore, important to anticipate these costs before embarking on a home automation installation. To do this, list your needs and compare the prices of materials and devices in stores and on the Internet. Get several estimates if you wish to have the work done by a professional.
Good to know: you should know that there is a directory of home automation specialists who can assist you in the design of your project and ensure the best possible quality/cost result for your installation.