Z-Wave Light Control

Posted by , , at 10:00 am

Affordable home automation has arrived at last: even some of the larger, old-school alarm companies are “bundling” these services with traditional intrusion protection to appeal to more homeowners. Makes sense – even ADT has entered the fray with its new Pulse platform. As I have written elsewhere, ADT’s offering leaves much to be desired: however, the simple fact that even the alarm industry’s 800 lb. gorilla is finally combining home automation with home security must be significant. But what’s the new technology that alarm companies are offering for connectivity and control of your lights, locks, thermostats, and other appliances? It’s called Z-Wave.

What is Z-Wave?

Z-Wave is a proprietary wireless communications protocol designed for home automation, specifically to remote control applications in residential and light commercial environments. The technology uses a low-power RF radio embedded or retrofitted into home electronics devices and systems, such as lighting, home access control, entertainment systems and household appliances.

What is Z-Wave Used for?

Many people have heard of X 10, an older (and less reliable) technology that works over your home’s electrical circuitry. For a good comparison: Z-Wave represents an improvement over X 10 in the same way that cellular communication is replacing “hard” copper phone lines. In other words, Z-Wave is the future.

By adding Z-Wave to home electronics such as lighting, climate and security systems, it is possible to control and monitor these household functions via remote control, based on manual or automated decisions. The control can be applied to a single device or group of devices, in a single room or zone or throughout the entire home.

Remote Lighting Control

The most basic usage of Z-Wave control is a plug-in device – like a lamp. And that is where the more advanced alarm companies often start their Z-Wave offering. Being able to turn on your desk or bedroom lamp (or a small appliance) when you are away is one advantage – and can give the impression that you are home, unlike the old-fashioned approach of “lights on timers” that most of us have seen.

But There’s More!

It gets better, because Z-Wave can be integrated with your alarm system to take you way beyond remote light control. For example, imagine doing the following with your plug-in lights:

  • Program a light to turn on or off, in conjunction with an alarm event.
  • Program a light to turn on or off, in conjunction with your alarm system being armed or disarmed.
  • Program a light to turn on or off, in conjunction with a door opening or closing – based on time of day.

As you can see, this device is about much more than just remote control of your lights. This is real integrated functionality to increase your security and peace of mindsave energy, and get the most value from your alarm system.

FrontPoint offers a Z-Wave light control module, and we include the ability to program and control this device remotely with our popular Interactive level of monitoring. Future posts will cover other Z-Wave devices, like locks and thermostats – and talk more about the technology. It’s only natural that FrontPoint, as the #1 ranked alarm company in the US for wireless, interactive home security, would be on top of this new technology. When it comes to systems that are safer, smarter, simpler, more affordable, and virtually to defeat, FrontPoint is the clear choice. And yes, we can keep the lights on – or off – for you!

 

Comments (16)

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  1. Cordless Desk Lamp

    thanks for sharing.

  2. Gary

    I am having trouble pairing my GE 12722 wall switch. It was paied before, but I made some changes and can’t pair it up again. It does recognize the switch when I cleared the device from the panel, but it does not find it when I try to pair it.

    • Katie Rynex

      Gary, it is important to us that you are entirely taken care of so we are going to have one of our Support Specialists reach out to you to help you with that wall switch. Thanks for your feedback and we look forward to speaking with you soon!

  3. Adam

    Will this GE light switch work with the Frontpoint system? http://smile.amazon.com/dp/B0035YRCR2

  4. Eric

    Will this work with the FrontPoint system: http://www.amazon.com/Aeon-Labs-Aeotec-Z-Wave-Edition/dp/B008VWAPU4?

    • Jamie Botzer

      Hi Eric, unfortunately we do not support that product. You can integrate a variety of Z-wave technologies with a FrontPoint security system. The full listing is available at http://www.alarm.com/overview/empower_devices.aspx. Thanks for asking!

  5. Eric

    Will this work with the FrontPoint system: http://www.amazon.com/Aeon-Labs-Aeotec-Z-Wave-Edition/dp/B008VWAPU4?

  6. Dwain Meyer

    Does Front Point accommodate z-wave lift switches such as the GE or Jasco 45609?

    • Gilbert Cho

      Hi Dwain! The GE 45609 is a light switch, so in that regard, Yes – FrontPoint DOES support it. If you have any questions about pairing it with your system, please feel free to contact us and we’d be happy to help you with that. However, if you were referring to a specific lift switch such as the LiftMaster garage door opener, FrontPoint does not support that item.

      To provide further assistance with your question, and answer any other questions you may have, one of our Support Specialists will be reaching out to you soon.

      Thanks for contacting us, hope this has helped!

  7. Dwain Meyer

    Does Front Point accommodate z-wave lift switches such as the GE or Jasco 45609?

  8. Alan

    Grrrr… iPad bad! “food” s/b “good” instead above!

  9. Alan

    Grrrr… iPad bad! “food” s/b “good” instead above!

  10. Alan

    Yes, I really love all my zwave modules.

    It really does create a system whose whole is far greater than just the sum of its parts.

    Too many features and possibilities to really describe in a comment or even a whole blog post, but you did provide a few food “illuminating” examples.

    Liked the playful Motel 6 reference at the end too! You always have fun with that type of thing :-).

    • Peter M. Rogers

      Well, it’s actually fun putting all this information out there – and a big part of our job is to educate and be transparent about what it takes to protect and control your home. Thanks, as always!

  11. Alan

    Yes, I really love all my zwave modules.

    It really does create a system whose whole is far greater than just the sum of its parts.

    Too many features and possibilities to really describe in a comment or even a whole blog post, but you did provide a few food “illuminating” examples.

    Liked the playful Motel 6 reference at the end too! You always have fun with that type of thing :-).

    • Peter M. Rogers

      Well, it’s actually fun putting all this information out there – and a big part of our job is to educate and be transparent about what it takes to protect and control your home. Thanks, as always!

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