How to Minimise Your Home’s Environmental Footprint
Your environmental footprint, or ecological footprint, is defined by some as something that “measures humans’ consumption of natural resources against the Earth’s ecological capacity (biocapacity) to regenerate them.” Yet, to others it is the sum total of the energy we use as individuals and groups in things like home heating and cooling, food supplies, and the effect that such consumption causes to the environment. No matter what size your environmental footprint, it is wise to look for ways to minimise it. One of the simplest ways to do that is with a smart home climate control system and other smart home solutions.
You may wonder why the term “smart” is used, and it helps to understand that these systems use an array of technology that allow the homes to adjust many settings and functions automatically. Going well beyond basic timers and pre-programmed settings, the smart home solutions can be interacted with at a distance, often through a mobile device, but can also adjust according to indoor and outdoor conditions such as heat, cold, night or day.
Simply put, a smart home climate control system is something that can automatically adjust specific zones of a home, or even the entire home, to ensure that things like cooling and heating are used only when needed. In that way, it maximises the energy efficiency of the home. Yet, these same smart home solutions also reduce operating costs of a home or any building.
Naturally, for any smart home climate control system to work best, the building itself should be assessed for its insulation, air tightness and quality of windows and doors. It makes little sense to utilize smart home solutions without also ensuring that the structure can keep out hot or cold air and retain the conditioned air within.
Of course, smart home climate control systems are not limited to heating and cooling alone. There are also options for integrating lighting, electrical outlets, and even water consumption with an array of devices. By relying on such automatic controls, you drastically reduce consumption of key resources such as oil, water, and electricity.
If you are hoping to leave the world a bit better than you found it, and spare it a little of the wear and tear that modern man seems to cause it, then the use of any smart home solutions is a wonderful way to reach such goals.
How to Convert Your Home to a Smart Home
Smart homes are the way of the future. The famous IoT, or Internet of Things, is part of the shift from “dumb” to smart homes, and yet many are still confused about the best ways to make the transition. The good news is that you do not have to do it all at once, and you don’t even have to get rid of some of your favourite household items. Instead, you can turn to devices like an AC controller, connected home lighting, and WiFi home automation solutions to make it happen.
To begin with, it helps to know just what a smart home actually means, and as one expert so adeptly defined it: “Basically it’s a house with integrated automation systems that offers us different possibilities thanks to the internet. By turning your home into a smart one, you are able to control appliances, lighting, temperature, multimedia systems, security, windows and doors, among a whole range of other functions.”
Of course, we still need to figure out the “how”. A good place to begin is with the idea of WiFi home automation. You are going to need to be sure that your home has the most reliable WiFi capabilities and you then need to determine the platform on which you will run the home. In essence, you’ll need some sort of electronic bridge that is supplied to you by the provider of your WiFi home automation.
Then, you can start to add other components and there are many more options than you might think. For example, one of the first that many want is an AC controller as this allows you to create zones throughout the home and keep them set to optimal conditions based on your needs or wishes.
There are also options for connected home lighting, and that can mean bulbs that are energy efficient can be controlled via the automated system. For example, time the lights to turn on and off at the most common hours, and even use a mobile device to turn on or off lights while away from home.
In addition to an AC controller to help with climate controls and a connected home lighting system, you can also automate with the use of smart plugs. Effectively turning any dumb devices into smart ones, it could be a first big step towards total home automation, without spending huge sums on new equipment.
Begin with that WiFi home automation from a reputable supplier and then find out how they can help you install essentials such as the climate and AC controller, switches and plugs, water system options and even connected home lighting.
6 Advantages of Having Climate Control Systems for Your Home
Have you ever stopped to consider how often you visit your thermostat? Maybe you even live with someone and the two of you are in the famous battle of dialling it up or down according to your liking? No matter what, if you pay a visit to the thermostat on a daily basis, it is time to consider smart home climate control systems.
In their simplest forms, climate control systems are a combination of technologies that keep your home at an optimal temperature at all times. However, when you rely on climate control air conditioning or heating, it does more than keep your living areas comfortable. In fact, once you understand the advantages of smart home climate control, the comfort factor may not be your favourite thing about climate control systems at all.
Every room is set to your preferences
While climate control air conditioning means rooms are always kept cool, even at the peak of summer’s heat, it also means that every one in the house as well as every room is kept at a more regular level. This saves a tremendous amount of energy since a smart home climate control only begins to cool or heat a room at the precise times and when controls are needed.
No more tweaking
Using sensors, climate control systems keep temperatures regulated rather than allowing thermostats to engage and disengage on a constant basis.
No more wasted energy
The teenager who turns the air conditioning to full blast and then leaves is foiled by those sensors. However, climate control air conditioning also ensures that no energy is wasted in any room.
Lower operating costs
Using a smart home climate control system ensures that you no longer have out of control energy bills and operating costs. You can see what it takes to regulate a fixed temperature in each room and enjoy a more balanced use of energy.
Another of the advantages of climate control systems is that most are adjustable via a smartphone or mobile device. Forget to set the temperature a bit higher for that cool day? Just use the phone to do it.
As the sun rises, the heat goes up, and because you have climate control air conditioning, your home remains comfortable. Without those sensors and smart gear, the temperatures might rise and become uncomfortable indoors.
There are so many advantages to climate control, and it is a good idea to explore how they can help you.
6 Awesome Ways an Automated Home Can Improve Your Life
The IoT or Internet of Things has many people excited. This is due to the fact that WiFi home automation can make our lives easier, healthier, safer and just plain better. Let’s look at six of the most impressive and awesome ways that home automation improves our lives:
1. It usually uses a home automation app and that means that you can access most of the technologies inside of your smart home from anywhere. Imagine what that could mean. You can turn off lights you may have left on from anywhere, open and close the garage door, adjust the temperatures, and even turn on appliances. That is a huge stress reducer for almost anyone!
2. It lets you cut operating costs with options like connected home lighting. Lighting can consume around 30% of any home’s energy supplies, but with connected home lighting and WiFi home automation, that cost can be slashed. Smart lights can be cued to turn on and off on a set routine and even feature sensors that learn your patterns, enabling the least amount of energy used to provide essential lighting.
3. It cuts energy use. A home automation app is good for many things, and so is connected home lighting, but a WiFi home automation system can also be used to handle any home’s biggest energy consumer – heating and cooling. You can use it to automatically adjust temperatures up or down and in almost any area of the home. Turn off the AC and reactivate it only when you are headed home.
4. It ensures security. A home automation app can be connected to the garage door. As this is one of the most common entries through which house breaking crimes are facilitated, it is wonderful that you can use your phone to secure your home!
5. You can cut back on water consumption. Some WiFi home automation options include things like automated irrigation – this controls the time and amount of water used in your landscaping. Use of IFTTT such as iZone’s irrigation systems can help in that regard. For example, if it rains on a watering day your system will not run and it will delay it to your next scheduled watering day to save you money. Not only is that a greener way of life but it also promotes healthier gardens.
6. You don’t even have to invest. Though you can use connected home lighting and other connected systems, a home automation app can also be paired to smart switches and plugs. That means you can control “dumb” devices via the app if they are plugged into the outlets that speak to the WiFi system.
Are you ready to experience an automated home? It is the way of the future and sure to improve your life.
5 of the Latest and Greatest Smart Home Products
Has this ever happened to you? You are about 30 minutes away from home, and on the way to work. You have no time to turn around, and you realized you may have left the iron on. What to do? In the past, the answer was that you would have to be late or run the risk of a disaster in your home. Today, with smart home automation and the wide array of smart home technology products that worry is a thing of the past. Let’s take some time to look at five of the very latest and greatest of these products.
1. Lighting solutions
A smart lighting system is not only about the most energy efficient bulbs, though that is an important component. It is also about bulbs that do not generate heat and cause your home to use more energy for cooling, as well. One example is the iZone LED lighting control – every light in your home is thermostatically controlled, meaning as conditions in the roof space heat up, light adjusts its temperature to maintain optimal efficiency. They are so smart you can maximise energy efficiency by covering your LED lighting with insulation – unlike other lights with no thermostat, these can’t be covered meaning where every light is installed, you are losing thermal efficiency in your home. Imagine a home with 50 lights – that’s 50 holes in your insulation in your roof to let the warm or cool air escape. Of course, a smart lighting system can be integrated with an array of smart outlets and switches, which we’ll learn about below.
Another innovation in smart home automation is the use of smart switches. These can be for lighting, climate controls and more. They have sensors that allow you to keep temperatures and lighting controlled easily, and with the flick of a switch. The iZone lighting switches even have a light intensity mode that can adjust automatically to changing light conditions, much like the latest Qantas Dreamliner jets, this saves vast amounts of energy as well as improving your feeling of wellbeing.
Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to replace every appliance with new smart home technology products? The good news is that you don’t have to because smart plugs allow you to turn almost any appliance into a smart one. Through the plug you are able to control devices, turning them on or off and even control lighting that might be connected to a smart plug.
4. Garage doors
Did you leave it open? Oh no! Actually, those days are gone thanks to smart home automation and the advent of garage doors that can be controlled from anywhere via the mobile phone.
5. Air purification
Though climate controls are some of the greatest smart home technology products, automated air purification for the entire home is a marvel. Eliminate allergens, dust, and even viruses with the best options.
With options in a smart lighting system and so many other smart home technology products, it just makes sense to start to make your life easier, safer and even healthier using the many solutions in smart home automation.
IFTTT Home Automation
Airstream Living Technology allows you to control your Air Conditioning and Smart LED Lighting from anywhere with your Smartphone, Tablet and now IFTTT!
Airstream has teamed up with IFTTT (If This Then That) to give you a free service for iZone and iLight. IFTTT allows you to create chains of simple conditional statements called “Applets” which are triggered based on changes to other web services such as Weather, Gmail, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.
Creating Applets is very simple and can be done on your phone in a few seconds! With up to 30 triggers and 42 actions, iZone and iLight have you covered with endless possibilities!
IFTTT is available on Apple and Android.
iZone Smart Lighting Release
iZone win makes plans for new ecofriendly house a breeze
Rose Sheridan from Bicton is the lucky winner of the iZone + Panasonic ducted reverse cycle system worth up to $15,000. The Airstream competition ran for six months, starting in October last year. Rose however only came across the competition about a month ago and decided to try her luck.
“I saw a program on A Current Affair recently about a lady who had a lot of success entering competitions online so I thought I would have a go too. That’s when I saw the iZone competition and immediately thought how fantastic that would be for our new home”
Rose, her husband and two children aged 18 and 15 have lived in their Bicton family home for the past 15 years and considered demolishing it and rebuilding for the past five years, “the house is old, it’s falling apart. We’ve done bits and pieces over the year, but it has now got to the point where it’s not worth the upkeep”
Airstream owners Mike Temple and Walter Kimble empathised with Rose’s situation and agreed to hold the prize until Rose and her husband were ready to build their dream home.
“My husband is an Environmental Scientist, so it has always been our dream to build an ecofriendly house. Winning this prize has made such a difference to the realisation of our dream home and we are very thankful to Mike and Walter. We are looking forward to utilising all the cool features, especially iSave which will help reduce our carbon foot print”.
Reduce leakage and save on energy costs with Airstream
Following on from the huge success of Airstream’s Clip-in duct board spigots comes a range of patented Clip-in zone dampers.
Flexible duct is taped to the spigot and then the damper is simply clipped into the duct board hole. The dampers can be easily removed if required.
Airstreams Clip-In dampers are available in standard sizes from 200mm to 450mm diameter and in low profile versions from 200mm to 400mm diameter. The low profile clip in damper range was designed for tight roof spaces where standard round barrel dampers are not possible. The dampers are 24V drive open drive / closed and come complete with a 12 meter RJ11 power cable.
The plastic construction helps to prevent cold bridging in humid areas and a rubber gasket fitted to all spigots ensures an airtight seal under all conditions. In addition a foam gasket and gramophone rings on the damper blade reduce leakage to a minimum when the damper is closed.
For more information contact email@example.com or learn more about Airstream”siMaxi range here.
Make sure your air conditioning is Airstream tight this summer!
A range of patented duct board spigots developed by Airstream allows flexible duct to be taped to the spigot and then simply clipped into the duct board hole. And they are removable too!
Available in standard sizes from 200mm to 550mm diameter and in low profile versions for tight installs from 300mm to 450mm diameter.
The plastic construction helps to prevent cold bridging in humid areas and a rubber gasket fitted to all spigots ensures an airtight seal under all conditions. Clip-in spigots can be used on fittings, starters, cushion heads and take-offs.
Airstream spigots can be supplied in “knock down form” for ease of transport and storage and can also be fitted with manual balancing dampers if required.
For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or find out more about iMaxi here.
iZone – Individual room temperature control for every home
Airstream have recently increased their range of iZone temperature control options to include individual room sensors.
Sensors are available in both wired and wireless versions. Occupants can conveniently switch their zone from closed to climate control via an illuminated button on each sensor. Up to 12 sensors can be incorporated into an iZone system in any combination.
These stylish controllers are available in White, Black or Ocean Mist to compliment the Clipsal Saturn range of light switches.
More than just your basic sensor, iZone sensor can be configured to act as the master controller for your Daikin, Panasonic, Toshiba, Mitsubishi Electric, Temperzone, or Fujitsu unit. Better still the sensors can be configured to “auto select”, the zone furthest from set-point to control the aircon unit. All sensors can be easily calibrated or off-set in 0.1oC increments if required.
For more information contact email@example.com.
iZone 310 talks Panasonic’s language, so you don’t have to.
iZone 310 provides integrated control over your ducted Panasonic® air conditioning unit, as well as your zoning system. You can now fine-tune home-wide air distribution and your air-conditioning unit’s modes and fan speeds, automatically or manually, from any iZone touch screen in your home. With up to 12 consoles and zones throughout your home, that means maximum control, efficiency and savings.
Master control and temperature-controlled zones
Unlike other systems that aggregate temperature across your home, resulting in wide variations, iZone 310’s master control functionality means you can manage the temperature of your home and the zones within it holistically. What’s more, with temperature sensors on every controller in your home, you can take that control to an even higher level – every room will be at the temperature you want, all the time.
Easy on the eye, as well as your pocket
No ugly wall sensors. No bulky control units. iZone 310 is an elegant touch screen console that you can customise to suit your home’s interior design. Changing the background colours on your screens is as straightforward as choosing the precise temperature you want.
Simple scheduling for set-and-forget use
Create nine ‘favourite’ schedules with the easy-to-use seven-day timer, activating and deactivating modes and the four-setting sleep timer at the touch of a screen.
Future proof, for even more flexibility
Already packed with unique functionality, iZone 310 is also future-proof, ready for a host of future innovations, including our new iPhone app that will turn your phone into a controller. You’ll also have WiFi, 3G and web-based system control, as well as the option of integration with home automation systems.
For more information download the full iZone brochure here or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Panasonic is a registered trade mark of Panasonic Corporation of Japan
iZone and iSense team up to reduce running costs
- Temperature sensing and set point adjustment
- Open, close or climate control of the zone
- Air volume adjustment to the zone in 5% increments
- Activate or deactivate the iSense control feature
An economy cycle for residential ducted air conditioning systems
Airstream have released “iSave”, an integrated night cooling /economy cycle system, for small ducted reverse cycle systems. iSave makes use of cool outdoor temperatures in the evening to assist in reducing energy consumption and associated running costs. Its half way between an evaporative system and a reverse cycle system but you still get the full benefit of ducted reverse cycle when you really need it.
Particularly effective on cool summer nights, this simple concept allows occupants to introduce 100% outside air to assist in cooling their home via their touch screen or smart phone App. Being fully integrated with the iZone 311, the system automatically switches to vent mode, preventing the compressor from running when iSave has been selected.
At the heart of the system is a patented return air box containing all the required dampers and filters. This allows filter maintenance to be undertaken via the return air grille inside the home without the need to climb inside the roof void or onto the roof itself for filter cleaning or replacement.
For more information contact
or find an Airstream dealer now.