Just about to start building a house

Discussion in 'HomeKit, HomePod, CarPlay, Home & Auto Technology' started by danny842003, Mar 2, 2018.

  1. danny842003 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 6, 2017
    So this week coming I’m about to start building a house. It’s an owner builder project so nothing is really set in stone yet beside the plans.
    I would like to incorporate some smart items and ideally HomeKit enabled, but I have no experience with smart devices previously.

    I would like smart lights in the master bedroom and open plan living/dining/kitchen area and also I would like AC to be controllable from the HomeKit app.

    I have looked at a few AC manufacturers and can’t see any listing HomeKit compatability, do you have to buy a 3rd party device for this?
    Lights colours would be cool but I don’t think I would really use them so white would be the key thing.
  2. jetsam macrumors 6502a

    Jul 28, 2015
    I assume you're talking about central A/C, not windows units. If so, you'll need to control your A/C with a HomeKit-enabled thermostat. A few of these are available from manufacturers (like the Bryant and the Carrier [which are basically Ecobees]); the rest are third-party.
  3. danny842003 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Jun 6, 2017
    Yeah central or as it’s called here ducted AC.
  4. CPTmom2wp macrumors 6502


    Sep 10, 2014
    The Ecobee thermostat has been great for us, with 2 Trane heat pumps, one for each floor. It can be controlled from the computer, iPad, or iPhone HomeKit, but mostly we just use Siri to change temperature. Scheduled temperature changes to save energy, e.g., lower temps at night and while at work, different on weekends have been pre-programmed so we don't even have to think about it.

    Lighting is more individual preference. Some people like to control their bulbs through switches and apps. Others, like me, prefer to just leave the switches alone and control bulbs individually or in pre- specified groupings through HomeKit, Hue App, or Siri. We also have our bulbs automated, on a schedule, in groups, to come on and shut off when we get up, leave for work, evening, bedtime,etc. You can also create "scenes" such as movie watching, tv watching, entertaining. I also like to be able to dim the bulbs by percentages, e.g., "Siri, set all lights to 50%". There are a lot of new options that are fun and surprisingly easy to start relying on.

    Recommend: White Ambiance type lights for the majority of fixtures with color saved for a few lamps, e.g., watching movies, entertaining. You might also want to consider some strip lighting for over and under cabinets. It really makes a huge difference in how nice things look. Don't forget smart lights outdoors. Best of all, they are LED and cost almost nothing to operate.

    Have fun!
  5. canyonblue737 macrumors 65816

    Jan 10, 2005
    I use Lutron Caseta light switches in the entire house to have HomeKit enabled lights EVERYWHERE. I have over 40+ of them and a fleet of cheap Amazon Echo Dots (and now two HomePods, our Apple Watches, and iPhones) that can all create 100% voice coverage throughout the home of lighting.

    The big advantage of switches is that there is a physical switch to use when you want, and for guests to use and understand. Limiting control of lighting to JUST voice is a big mistake IMHO.

    We also use two Ecobee thermostats for temperature control on HomeKit. For in-ground sprinklers nothing beats Rachio but for now due to HomeKit limitations it is controlled via app or Alexa. For whole house wifi we use eero and it makes sure we have 100% full speed coverage in every inch of our large home.

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4 March 2, 2018