Let Machines Do the Work! Clever Automation Ideas for Your Home

There are many simple tasks around the home that could be taken care of by modern technology.  You could free up your life to do more enjoyable things and save yourself a lot of time and hassle.  Options like gate automation can make your life so much easier and really improve the functionality of your home.

Automated Timing Switches

Timing switches can be a great way to automate a variety of different devices and gadgets around the home.  You can buy these switches and plug your electrical items straight into them.  You will then be able to program in a schedule of times when you want these appliances to turn on and off.

For example timing switches can be used for electric heaters.  The switches will automatically turn heaters on and off at the programmed times.  This enables you to heat rooms in advance so that they are nice and warm for when you get home.  This will also save you money as the heaters switch off again automatically so you never need to worry about leaving them on wasting energy.

Timing switches can also be used for other tasks like pumps for fish tanks.  You will be able to program when you want the pumps to turn on and off automatically and this saves you a lot of hassle.

Automated Washing Cycles

Many modern washing machines can now offer scheduled programming.  You will be able to load washing machines and then program what time you want them to come on.  This can save a lot of time as you can load the machine the night before and program it to automatically start the next morning.  No more rushing around before work trying to get the washing on!

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Automated wash cycles can also save you money as you can program machines to wash at the cheapest tariff point of the day even if you are out and about.

Automated Gates

Gate automation can offer a practical way to secure your home whilst still making it accessible to you and your family.  These gates can also add style to properties and have a certain upmarket appeal.  The great thing about automated gates is that they can be opened remotely.  This means you don’t have to get out of your car and open the gates to access your property.  The gates can either be opened by someone inside the property or you can have a wireless controller in your car that triggers the gates to open for you.

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This offers an incredibly convenient way to secure your property without making access difficult for you or your family. There are many benefits to installing automated gates on your property including:

  • Increased Security – locked gates offer a powerful visible deterrent to opportunistic criminals. Automated gates have specially geared motors that make it very difficult for someone to force them open.  For additional security electromagnetic locks can be installed which power up when the gates are shut.  These exert a very powerful force that makes it incredibly difficult to force gates open.  Automated gates make it much easier for you to control who enters your property.
  • Increased Convenience – automated gates enable you to enter and leave your property with ease. Some remote controller devices can be used up to 20 metres away.  This means you can ensure the gates slide open just as you approach so that you don’t have to stop your car and wait.
  • Long Lasting and Durable – quality automated gates are available in a range of robust materials. Metal gates offer a tough and lasting option.  You can also get wooden electric gates for those that prefer a more traditional, natural finish.  Whatever material you choose with a little careful maintenance your automated gate should last for many years.
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Ward Off Unwanted Attention From Your House With These Ideas

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Your home will be your castle, so there is no wonder that you just want to retreat into it at the end of a busy day at work or with the kids. The last thing you will want is any unwanted attention aimed at your house or yourself! So, how do you deal with people trying to get to you when you are supposed to be relaxing in your own home? Well, here are my top tips for warding off all that unwanted attention from your home.

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Burglars And Intruders

One of the main forms of unwanted attention will come from potential burglars and intruders. Under no circumstance will you want these people anywhere near your home! Thankfully, there is plenty that you can do to deter intruders and burglars from your property. One of the best things is equipping your home with either a burglar alarm or a CCTV camera system. Once a burglar spots either of these on the exterior of your home, they will instantly be put off from attempting to enter your house as there is just too much risk. The alarm could go off, which would bring attention to the property, or their faces could be caught on the CCTV. One mistake that many homeowners make is that they leave their spare set of house keys somewhere outside in case they ever accidentally lock themselves out. That spare set of keys is basically an invitation to intruders to let themselves in! One way to make sure your keys don’t fall into the wrong hands is to switch from a traditional lock to a key fob style lock, such as the ones from Keycard Ninja. These types of locks can’t be picked like traditional ones, and rather than leaving the key fob outside in a hiding place, you can simply give it to your neighbor for safekeeping.

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Pests And Vermin

Not all unwanted intruders in your home are going to try and steal your expensive tech and valuables. Some may try and make their own home in your house! Of course, I’m no longer talking about burglars anymore – I mean pests and vermin! These little creatures will try and make their way into your home no matter what. Thankfully, there are plenty of things that you can do to keep them well away from your property. One of the most obvious ways is to keep a very clean and tidy home. Most pests and vermin will make their way into your home to try and find food and water. So any leftovers or fresh ingredients that are left out on worktops in your kitchen are going to attract all these little critters into your home. So make sure that you clean up well after any cooking and baking. You should also regularly check the frames around your windows and doors. Small gaps can develop in these, which can provide entryways for small insects, rats, and mice. If you notice any new gaps, you should repair them as soon as possible.

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Teenagers

Do you have some troubles with your neighbors’ teenage children? Or maybe you live in an area where teenagers regularly congregate and hang out. Even if these children aren’t targeting your house directly, their presence can still be very annoying and, in some cases, even intimidating. If your main issue with these kids is that they are hanging out in your area and demonstrating unsociable behavior, then you should speak to your local police about it. They will be able to disperse any gangs who meet up and move them on. If things get particularly bad and the teenagers get exceptionally rowdy, then the police can always escort them home. Unfortunately, sometimes teenagers can be extremely unruly and target certain properties for no reason. They might cover part of your home in graffiti or, even worse, cause damage to your house or garden. If this happens, you should contact the police who can then work at catching the culprit. If they are caught, they can then be forced to pay for any repairs and cleaning that is required. Depending on the severity of their crimes, they may even be convicted and forced to pay a fine. To make sure that you don’t become the target of any local teenagers, though, you should endeavor to speak to their parents at the first sign of any bad behavior. This should nip things in the bud before things escalate.

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Spam Callers

There are some forms of attention that could even affect you inside your own home. And one of these types of annoying attention comes from spam callers. These days, many sales companies employ telesale employees who call random households to try and sell their products and services. This can be extremely annoying for people on the receiving end, and many homeowners feel that it is a breach of their privacy. Especially since the sales company has somehow got hold of their home phone number without their knowledge! But thankfully, you don’t need to deal with these annoying spam calls for too long. There is plenty that you can do to stop them calling. One of the best ways is to add your phone number to a do not call registry. The companies are not allowed to contact any of the numbers in these registries. Another way for dealing with these calls is to not hand out your phone number so freely. When you are filling out forms, leave the contact number section blank whenever possible.

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Door To Door Salesmen

Back in the fifties and sixties, door to door salesmen were very common. However, over the past few decades, they have started to be seen as a nuisance, and fewer companies send them out. However, there are still ones which do. If you don’t want to be bothered by these salesmen, you can place a sticker in your home saying that they aren’t welcome. Otherwise, see if there is an online registry to which you can add your address to which will blacklist it for sales companies.

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Unavoidable Steps To Keep Your Home Safe

One of the main important things in the home is safety. There are many things that you can let slip, but you can’t reduce the safety of the home and still be happy calling it a home. The truth is, this is the primary concern of anyone who wants to feel at home in their house. But not many people are actually as safe as they want to be; there are many homes out there which do not get the proper kind of attention in regards to their safety levels. In this post, we are going to try and rectify that. We will do this by taking a look at some of the unavoidable aspects involved in keeping a home safe. Without further ado, let’s take a look and see what can be done.

Don’t Advertise Anything

One of the major threats against any household is the possibility of a burglar breaking in. It goes without saying that this is not something you want to experience, and yet so many homes seem almost set up to encourage burglars in. It is vital that you pay attention to the kind of signals your exterior to the house is giving off. If you are keeping your curtains open the whole time, then people will be able to scout out your living room and see if you have anything worth stealing. Burglars are known to do this, so you would be wise to make sure you are not advertising anything in your home. Being burgled is the last thing you want; it can cause a huge amount of destruction and loss.

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Protect Your Home Against Disaster

Something much less common, but still hugely important, than burglary is natural disasters. There are many kinds of natural disaster, and it is important to try and protect your home against as many of them as possible. Depending on the area you live in, some kinds of disaster might be more common or more likely than others, and it is worth protecting against those first and foremost. You never know what might happen, and it is always worth protecting your home as best as you can. You might decide to install roll up shutters to protect against hurricanes, for example. Or perhaps you are keen on protecting against water damage from storms. Whatever it is, make sure you don’t delay it any further.

Internal Risks

Not all threats come from outside the home; some come from within. One perfect example of such a threat is the risk of fire. Fires are relatively common, and nobody ever expects to start one in their own home. It is a good idea to only use electrical equipment which is in perfect working order, to make sure the home electricals are not kept on the whole time, and to make sure that any smokers do so outside. Fire can damage and badly hurt you and your possessions, so make sure that you put every effort into minimizing the possibility of it happening in your home.

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Going On Holiday? Don’t Leave Your Home Vulnerable!

So, it’s that time of year again. We are all starting to dream of our summer holidays – maybe even our spring holidays! If you’re anything like me, then you probably can’t wait just to get away from it all and soak in some sun. One of the parts of going on holiday that is less fun, however, is the worry that can come with it. It can sometimes be difficult to leave the home behind, even if it is only for a week. You might find that it can be a bit nerve-wracking, especially if you are taking your entire family with you. While leaving the house unguarded is nobody’s dream situation, you have to make certain sacrifices if you want that dream holiday! But don’t worry – I’ve got you covered. Next time you are due to fly off somewhere exotic, just bear these essential points in mind.

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Windows & Doors

Probably the most important part of the whole operation! It is imperative that you check and double-check all of the windows and doors of your house before you leave for a holiday. You want to check any potential point of entry. While it may not be very likely that you will be burgled while you are away, it is worth doing, just in case. Imagine if the worst happened, simply because you had left a back window open! Go around each window and door, one by one, and make sure they are shut and locked tight. Better safe than sorry!

Check the Plumbing

You might not have thought to test the plumbing before you travel, but it is one of the more important items on this list. It is surprisingly common for plumbing to malfunction while families are holidaying. For that reason, it is advisable to check that everything is in good working order before you go. For this, it’s probably best to just get the professionals in.

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Pests

The last thing you want is to come back from your vacation, only to find your home infested with unwanted visitors! Next time you go away, make it easier on yourself: check beforehand. Any pest control company would be happy to give your house a once-over and look for any signs of infestation. A lot of people don’t want to do this, just in case they find something. But think about it: would you rather have pests and not know it, or know it and do something about it? For me, it’s a no-brainer.

Plants

It is also a good idea to give your plants a little bit of love and attention just before you leave. There are few things more annoying than returning home to find all the houseplants dead. It doesn’t take much – just give them a bit of water the day you leave, and they should be okay.

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Odds & Ends

There are also a few little tricks for keeping your house secure. If you have a neighbour whom you trust, then the whole process is much easier. You can just tell them that you are going away, and they can keep an eye out for you. Otherwise, it is a wise idea to put a couple of lights on timers, so it looks like someone’s home. While you’re at it, consider cancelling any grocery or milk deliveries you might have planned.

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