If you are reading this, there is a very good chance that you own a television. A modern television, to be precise. With a remote control. Chances are you also own a DVD player which also comes with a remote control. If you own a laptop with media center capabilities, there is a very good possibility it also came with a little remote control of its own. Which brings us to the question – since you have a remote control for everything, why cannot you have one for your household, too?
The answer, my friend, lies in wireless transceivers. And what makes them superior to the typical remote controls you are familiar with is the fact that they do not rely on LOS (line-of-sight) signals, but emit radio signals outward in a radial pattern, which means you do not have to point them at something to make it turn on or off. You can even automate the turning on and off of your appliances and lamps. Want that porch light to turn on by itself at 5:00 PM and shut off at the crack of dawn? Piece of cake – just program it into your transceiver and you are good to go. Sounds magical? Well, it does, but the wireless transceiver unit is not the only thing you need. In order to get results from your wireless transceiver, you need to obtain some more devices. However, do not be scared, they are not very expensive, especially after considering the comfort you receive through the use you can get out of them.
For controlling your household appliances, such as air-conditioners, fans, audio systems, televisions, dehumidifiers and coffeemakers (to name a few), you need an appliance module. They usually retail for less than US$ 15 each, and once it is linked to the wireless transceiver’s base module, will enable you to remotely control any appliance you connect to it without having to even get off your couch.
Lamps, on the other hand, require a similarly priced lamp module to be controlled using the wireless transceiver. It is compatible with most lights used in normal households, ranging from plain light bulbs to energy-saving lamps. However, halogen and fluorescent lamps are not yet officially supported, so if you want to use them, you must do so at your own risk. All you have to do is plug the lamp into a lamp module linked to the transceiver’s base. Now, if you are in the kitchen, and you suddenly remember that you have left the bedroom lamp on, without having to rush back to your room, you can simply flick a button on your wireless transceiver and turn it off. Yes, it is that simple!
The remote control and automation of your household appliances and lamps can be taken a step further through the use of enhanced wall switch modules to replace your existing wall switches, which not only allow you to have much greater control over them, but also provide additional features, such as the dimming of lights which could not be dimmed using the earlier system.
If there are lots of appliances and lamps you want to connect to wireless transceivers, you will need an equal number of modules. However, the best part is that most manufacturers of these units offer excellent discounts to customers buying in bulk, turning an already worthwhile investment into a seriously lucrative deal one would want to grab at first sight.
So, what are you waiting for? Wireless transceivers are available from most electronics dealers at very reasonable prices. X10 is a brand which you should look out for, since it offers excellent value for money. Consult an expert electrician if you want to find out more about wireless transceivers and receive brand recommendations.