Where's the best place to buy smart home products for heating and energy usage?

  • 26 April 2021
  • 6 replies
  • 47 views

Hello everyone,

I am building my house, I want to turn it into a smart home. To be called a smart home, there must be smart devices and products, but I don't know where to buy it. So I want people to be able to tell me where can I buy smart products for my home?

Thanks everyone.


6 replies

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Hello everyone,

I am building my house, I want to turn it into a smart home. To be called a smart home, there must be smart devices and products, but I don't know where to buy it. So I want people to be able to tell me where can I buy smart products for my home?

Thanks everyone.

I think others may know more about this, but you need to start from what you want to achieve, and then look at potential technology that matches your needs. 

So is your driver? Smart heating, smart electricity use, home security, comfort functions, entertainment? 

Maybe the most important decisions is what kind of central unit or hub you want to use, and how it interfaces with your devices. There are a number of competing protocols, and the hub may support more than one, but probably not all of them. 

A lot of these can be bought on Amazon or Screwfix. I am not sure I would recommend specialist suppliers unless you have something quite unusual in mind. But you have to remember that you will probably need a system integrator who sets it all up, and they may have a preferred supplier. 

 

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Welcome @MarianneVargas .

Yup, indeed. @MrPuds is very much correct.

You can definitely do a basic level of Smart Home stuff with something like Google Nest. Amazon Echo or Samsung SmartThings devices being the central hubs and then integrate other stuff that works with those to get some result. That sort of thing isn’t too difficult or expensive to do. You may also want to check out something called ZigBee as well, which is a protocol commonly used for this sort of stuff.

However, to get a truly Smart Home level with total home automation “home of the future” style level… That’s going to require an awful lot more kit and a LOT of spare cash to play with. Not to mention stuff like professional installations (meaning more money!) and probably some pretty solid home networking to get it all working. You may even have to upgrade to professional grade network kit from vendors such as Ubiquiti, Ruckus or Extreme Networks in order to have enough capacity and control to run everything. Most “free” ISP Routers are too underpowered to handle such heavy workloads and would either collapse under the pressure, or create such a huge bottleneck that it actually chokes the network to the point of being unusable.

It’s very difficult to even give any pointers without knowing what you’d want to do however. So as MrPuds mentioned, we’d need to know a bit more about what your ideas are before being able to make any suggestions.

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I should also mention that if you’re going for the total “home of the future” level Smart Home stuff for a newly built house, it’s MUCH easier to start integrating and building it out right from the start of the entire project, as you’d have much easier access to the main structure to run cabling, pipework, sockets, cabinets, racks and all the other stuff that would form the fabric of such setups.

It can be done later and even retrofitted to an existing building, but it’s easier, faster and slightly cheaper to get in there early and have it in place from day one.

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Hive is also a good option and provides a lot of different products you can use simply in one app without having to worry about different apps for heating, lighting etc.

Have the smart thermostat and smart trv valves which work well.

British gas own the brand but you don't need to be a customer to buy/use their products:

https://www.hivehome.com/products

 

 

Userlevel 7

Great first question, @MarianneVargas!

 

As ever there’s already been some great suggestions from @Blastoise186 and @MrPuds.

 

There’s also some great threads already discussing the benefits of some of the devices mentioned - Click to find out more about Smart thermostats like Hive and Tado.

Were these the type of products you had in mind or are you able to elaborate further? With a bit more detail I’m sure our resident experts will have plenty of helpful advice to give!

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Yessss I agree, the Tado is a great option if you have smart meters and you’re with OVO. It works out a lot cheaper getting it via your online account:

 

 

I’m still keen to hear from members who have this Tado installed. @Karlb1 did you get yours fitted in the end? 

 

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