Home Automation Tips

The following articles provide specific tips to help you set up your smart home.

Comparison of Home Automation Protocols

Smart Home Protocol Logos

Home automation systems use a number of communications protocols to allow different accessories speak a common language. This allows products from different brands work together to make your life easier. We review the different protocols including Wi-Fi, Z-Wave, Zigbee, Bluetooth, powerline, Insteon, X10, and more.

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Thermostats - Do I Need a Common Wire (C-Wire)?

Thermostat Common Wire

A common wire provides a constant flow of power so your smart thermostat can maintain a Wi-Fi connection. The electricity also powers the display screen. Most smart thermostats require a C-Wire, but we'll help you with some options in case you don't have one.

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Smart Switches - No Neutral Wire?

Smart Switch Neutral Wire

Smart switches require a constant flow of power so that their radios can communicate with relays and hubs. A neutral wire connected to the switch completes the circuit and keeps electricity flowing to the switch. This article explains how to identify a neutral wire. We'll also give you some options in case your home is wired without neutral wires to your light switches.

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