Ask An Expert: How Do I Get “Smart Lighting?”
Q: It seems like the thing these days is to make your home “smart,” to be able to control its various functions from one place, even from your phone. How can I get started and add smart lighting to my home?
A: In the home renovation industry, there has been an increasing desire to control many technological aspects of our home. From our sprinkler systems, to our heat, and even to our lights, we want to control everything at a given moment. This has spurred the start of the “Smart Home,” a home equipped with lighting, heating and electronic devices that can be controlled remotely by phone or computer.
A common misconception is that a smart home must be expensive and difficult to program. On the contrary, the increased demand for these systems has influenced manufacturers’ goal to make setting up these systems more simple and low cost.
Usually these systems start with a few main components, with additional add-ons available if you want to expand upon your system. For example, the Legrand adorne smart lighting system has three main components: the Hub, the Lighting Control app, and the correct switches and dimmers. Most systems you look into for your smart home will require these components. Then you can control them from an app on your smart device or computer.
Installing smart home lighting is perhaps the easiest and best way to start giving your home a tech makeover. All you need to do is:
- Install your lighting Hub
- Install the Wi-Fi Ready switches, dimmers or outlets
- Download the Legrand Lighting Control app
- Customize your system
Each step is pretty easy to do on your own. But professional help may be recommended for installing the Wi-Fi Ready switches, dimmers or outlets. Here’s how to get started:
Installing the Hub
Legrand’s Hub acts like the receiver that connects the signal between you and your lights. The Hub connects to your home’s internal wireless network and is where your data is stored and transferred. The hub coordinates with each switch wirelessly and sends instructions on how to set your special lighting “scene” (more on that later). It also allows you to preset your lights with timers. Now you can program your lights to come on at the same time every day. How simple is that?
Installing Switches, Dimmers or Outlets
Before you buy, make sure you get the lighting control that’s right for your needs. Legrand has a variety of interfaces for you to turn lights on, off or dim. Models can have a simple, fluid on/off operation like the Whisper Switch, or you can choose a sleek new model like the sof-Tap or Touch. The sof-Tap device operates similar to clicking the mouse on your computer and the Touch has a glass-like front and operates similar to a touch-screen on your phone. All of the Legrand adorne Wi-Fi Ready devices are available as switches and dimmers. This way, you can control your lights how you would like and where you would like.
Once you’ve chosen your switch, the installation process is pretty much the same as installing a standard wall switch. All of the switches and dimmers work in existing electrical boxes and work as a 1-for-1 swap. Always remember to shut off the power to the switch from your fuse box or electrical panel and consult with your friendly neighborhood electrician if you have any concerns.
If you’re unsure about how to install a switch, Legrand’s installation guide will give you all the details you need. After installation is complete, turn the power back on–now you’re ready to connect your switch to the Hub and your smart phone or tablet.
Install the App
Next, you can install Legrand’s free Lighting Control app on your phone or tablet (available through the App Store or Google Play marketplace). Once you download the app on your home’s wireless network, you can add your devices to it. The app will guide you through the set-up process and will only take a few minutes.
Customize Your “Scene”
From there, you can create lighting “scenes.” This allows you to adjust the lighting in your home to meet your specific needs. For special occasions or just everyday around-the-house use, Legrand’s lighting system makes it easy to automatically set lighting moods throughout your home wirelessly with nothing more than your smart phone or tablet. Now you can have your outdoor lights turn on automatically a little before sunset and shortly after sunrise, or you can simply use the “All Off” selection when going to bed.
And that’s about it. Every smart lighting system is a little different, but all will include a hub, lighting controls and a remote/app of some sort. If you have any questions on how these systems work, feel free to contact your local electrician or a smart lighting expert on the YLighting team at 866 428 9289.