How to Choose the Best Smart Home Lighting

How to Choose the Best Smart Home Lighting

With so many options these days, it’s easy to lose track when considering what would be the best smart home lighting to get for your home.

The following questions will guide you on how to make the best choice when it comes to smart lighting:

  • Do you have a hub yet?
  • How would you like to work on your lighting?
  • Smart lighting bulbs, plugs, or lighting switches?

If you can answer these questions, you will quickly find the lighting system that is perfect for your Smart Home.

I could recommend the Philips Hue Starter Kit if you are just starting to equip your house with bright lighting. It comprises the required standard unit (hub) and a few smart light bulbs that offer a lot of features. In this piece, you’ll discover what to think about when choosing lighting options. 

At the end of this column, you will be convinced about which is the best smart lighting system.

Do I Need Smart Lighting?

The smart light is just one of the things in a home.

It’s possible to place your lamps to turn off automatically when you leave the space, or simply just work with a voice assistant like Amazon Alexa to operate them.

Many systems supply the feature in which the lamps can be switched on and off automatically based on an existing location. So they can go on when you come home and go out when you’re leaving.

With smart lighting, your lifestyle can be mimicked when you are not home. For those who find the security of their home critical, this is a good argument for lighting.

In order to simulate your own presence, you should orient the established program as soon as you can after the lamps have been lit.

Once we went on a brief holiday and I witnessed its capacity for the first time. We were gone for a weekend and told our neighbors. I had adjusted my light to switch on in the day. On our second day, I got an email on my smartphone with the question: “You are still home — has something happened?

Not only was it very amusing, but additionally, it showed me that lighting may actually make your home safer.

Do I Need a Smart Home Hub?

Even if you never desire to convert your entire house into a wise home, you can improve it using smart lighting and also add security and comfort when saving money.

If this really is the case, then you don’t necessarily need a smart Home Hub, as you can control your smart lighting directly.

So if you simply want to make your lighting smart or simply want to try out something new, look at the Philips Hue light bulbs.

You schedule them and are able to get a handle on them. In the event that you’d like to obtain more associated with Smart Home later, you are still able to add a hub or your Philips Hue Hub. If you know that you will be adding different things to your Smart Home, such as for instance thermostats, video security camera systems, etc., then you will require a Smart Home Hub.

Our favorite is the Samsung Smart Things Hub.

It’s virtually compatible with all Smart Home goods, so you are always going to be nicely placed no matter what you would like to add to your own Smart Home. 

3 Strategies to Make Your Lighting Smart

There are 3 ways to get your light smart. There are smart bulbs, light switches, and plugs.

With these three variants, you can get a grip on your light with your smartphone with a voice assistant.

Which of the three ways you choose depends on your own circumstance and your own preferences. Do you only want to manage the light in your home or also the ones in your garden? Can you replace the bulbs of every lamp with a smart one, or maybe you have replaced it with an energy-saving LED and don’t want to reinvest?

Every one of those three variations has its own advantages and disadvantages. But let us get into the subject matter!

Smart Bulbs

Smart bulbs replace the light bulbs in a lamp. They can then be attached directly to the Smart Home Hub and operated via voice and smartphone assistant.

You should start small and maybe perhaps not directly replace all your lighting bulbs with smart light bulbs. Maybe it’s your aim to only replace a few essential lighting bulbs using smart light bulbs in order to schedule important places in your house or fake your presence.

If this is the case, I’d begin with the Philips Hue smart bulb collection which comprises a few smart bulbs at an excellent price.

This way, you can find out if you enjoy the principle and equip your home with even more smart illumination.

For instance, I started with the lamp. I desired to turn it on and off at peak times and after adding Geo-Fencing such that it always lights up once I return home in the day or leave in the daytime.

As soon as I became familiar with how smart light bulbs work, I implemented the things I learned in my living room and equipped with smart light bulbs. I have different commands by which Alexa can place different light modes.

Smart Light Switches 

Smart light switches are an innovative solution for a variety of circumstances. They transform all connected lamps to smart lamps.

For instance, if you’ve just replaced your old bulbs with fresh, energy-saving LEDs, you do not want to invest directly into fresh lighting bulbs.

Or have you got quite special lamps for which there are no great smart light bulbs? Smart lighting switches* are all great for such scenarios!

Therefore, in the event that you would like to make your lighting smart, quick and affordable, this is one of my favorite solutions. The single disadvantage is, if you want to do just a bit more than turn a bulb on and off, you’ve got to dismantle your old lighting switch and install the new one. Nevertheless, it’s fairly simple — you only need very few tools and the manuals explain everything very well.

So in the event that you have not had much training related to electronics installation yet, don’t be deterred from installing a new light switch.

In my basement and garage, I had many lamps that cannot be replaced directly with a smart light bulb. A smart light switch was the perfect solution because I did not want to invest in new bulbs to be able to execute smart lighting.

There are also dimmable smart lighting switches, that may dim your lamps if they don’t really have the ability to do so by themselves.

Smart Plugs 

With a smart plug, you can make specific lamps, which have to be powered with a plug, smart.

The smart plug serves as an adapter between the normal plug and the lamp.

Obviously, you may even control all the electrical devices using a smart plug. Exactly like the smart light switches, this version is particularly worthwhile for lamps in which you either cannot or do not wish to replace the bulb.

For example, I have a special reading lamp using a bulb that emits daylight. I needed to allow it to be smart, however, not replace the special light bulb with a fresh bulb.

In the long run, I decided to get a smart power stripOpens in a new tab. I can use to restrain all the additional electric devices attached to it with Alexa and my smartphone.

Besides the innovative Philips Hue light bulbs, the smart plugs were my entry medicine to the Smart Home topic. There are so many things that you can do with them!

They may be employed to conserve a great deal of money and pay for themselves after just a month or two (see my article about how just how much smart lights cost and how much you can save for yourself with them).

It is possible to get a handle on most of the smart plugs with your smartphone and lots of them work with a voice assistant such as Amazon’s Alexa.

You address it individually and then present its name to each plug. As an example, I will order Alexa to turn on my reading lamp in the family area. 

The smart functions behind it have made it feasible for it to automatically transform again after a particular amount of time, in case.

Things to Know Before You Buy Smart Lights 

The control system is going to play a significant role. You want to know which lights you want to control. For instance, will it be indoor or outdoor lighting or do you simply want added security lighting? Considering these things can allow you to decide the type of control system that you need. Is there any light that can’t be attached to a plug? For more details, you will need to do some research on the home plug options.

Best Smart Home Lighting – Beginner Sets

If you are only beginning to equip your Smart Home with lighting, starter kits are most likely the ideal choice for you.

The beginner sets listed offer all the features you need from smart lighting and therefore are appropriate for the many common Smart Home systems and voice assistants.

Beginner sets of smart lighting are no longer as expensive as they were. This allows them to pay for themselves more quickly, which usually signifies that the price could be recouped after only about a year by reduced power expenses.

Up next, I’ll show one of the finest starter sets to obtain smart lighting from. I have tried myself and can recommend each of them.

Philips Hue Starter Sets – Bulbs and Lighting Switches

It all began with Philips Hue. These certainly were the very first to ever make smart light bulbs and are still the best in my view.

You do not necessarily require the base channel, the Philips Hue Bridge*, to begin. You definitely won’t be able to use the whole range of features, but still, make your first experiences.

Here are the beginner sets from Philips Hue:

Philips Hue Starter Set incl. HubDecisionOpens in a new tab.

With this collection, you can jump right in and utilize all the functions of this Philips Hue light bulbs. In addition, with the Philips Hue Bridge, it is likely to expand the system. So if you are quite certain you want to add more lighting into a Smart Home (e.g. light strips* or exterior lighting*), this could be the right place for you personally..

Philips Hue Lamp Starter PlaceOpens in a new tab.

Should you merely wish to test the smart bulbs, to begin with, you should purchase several bulbs using this particular set for an excellent price. If you enjoy the principle of those smart bulbs, you can still buy the Philips Hue Bridge separately* and enlarge the device like that.

Philips Hue Dimming KitOpens in a new tab.

This is most likely the smallest and most economical starter set with which you’ll be able to experience smart lighting. It comprises a smart switch with a design function and a lightbulb.

Smart Plugs 

If you would like to get into the specifics of clever plugs, you should take a look at this post: 10 Best Smart Plugs For Google Home & Alexa [Buying Guide]

The Best Smart Plug on the Market

Tp-Link Kasa Smart PlugOpens in a new tab.

To boost your hunt, I could already tell you directly which the best smart plug is – the Tp-link Kasa Smart Plug.

It has an enormous assortment of simple operations and functions, integrated into a Smart Home resulting in an ingenious package.

Features 

Create schedules: You can place this Wi-Fi plug to turn on/off at different times. When you are not at home you can not only minimize your electricity costs, but in addition, mimic your presence.

Alexa and Google Assistant: Your TP-Link smart plug might be connected to Google Home or Amazon Alexa and be controlled via voice controls.

Simple installation and operation: Together with the Kasa Program and also the simple integration into Alexa or Google Home, you can compare the installation of the TP-Link smart plug. When you have attached it to your own voice assistant, you can control it. The program is very intuitive to use and offers features that are more useful.

High maximum loading: Using a power of 16 A, you can even connect devices to this plug without worrying as to whether it will burn.

Consumption display: Considering that the smart plug can be found between the user and the power grid, you may use it to capture the power consumption of one’s devices. This enables you to track the current power consumption inside the Kasa app and identify the devices that use power most and optimize their usage. If this feature isn’t important for you, you can even get the plug without a consumption timer to get it a little less expensive *.

Bottom-line 

There are many services and products, when it comes to smart lighting, that you could easily lose track of and get confused.

I trust that this guide has given you a synopsis by which you now know what to purchase.

Profzubby

I am a tech enthusiast. Since the Smart Home tech came out I fell in love with it and have been following it ever since. I decided to use this platform to pour out my knowledge and experience I've had overtime to guide your decisions. Hope the experience is worth your while.

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