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Travel for the holidays? Here's the smart home list, which you'll need to double-check



The appeal of the Smart Home is partly due to the management and monitoring that takes place during work or during the evening. Your smart home can work just as well with you for several days or even weeks, with the right guidance from you. If you hit the road this weekend, we have the tips you need to leave your home smart home with confidence.

Thermostats

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Adjust the thermostat thresholds to save the most energy during your absence.


Chris Monroe / CNET

If you have a smart thermostat, most realize that you are gone and provide a way to remotely change the thermostat. After all, you probably bought that thing. It is a nice advantage if you are traveling for a few hours or a working day. For longer periods or for thermostats that contain a vacation mode, it is advisable to check the threshold settings before a long absence. Sure, you can remotely adjust, but the whole idea here is to set and go. Before you go, set the temperature ranges of your thermostat so you can save money while keeping your home safe.

High and low temp thresholds save the most energy when they are closer to the outside temperature than at home. However, you should still be safe enough for your home.

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Light and Shadow

My parents always turned on the TV when we were away, so people would think we were home. I thought it would be a strange game to pretend that you were a kid, but as a homeowner it makes sense. Lighting is not a fail-safe protection against intruders, but a light or TV that mimics human activity is a good place to start. Smart switches and schedules can do just that.

A good rule of thumb is that the outdoor lighting should be switched on and off during the day, while the interior lighting in different rooms should be switched on and off. If you are using smart switches, you should create a schedule based on the time of day that replicates what you would normally do at home.

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If you have shade or window coverings, it's the best lower it in your absence.


Tyler Lizenby / CNET

If you have automatic blinds installed, you should set them to stay off during your absence. Turning on the lights could prevent crime, but leaving the blinds open can make your living room a holiday window for a burglar.

Cameras, Doorbells, and Security Systems

Recently, several new smart home security systems have come on the market. While they do most of the work for you once they're out of the box, it's important to give them a quick status check before you leave. The security settings depend on which products you have. Regardless of brand, it's a good idea to make sure motion sensors, cameras, locks, and doorbells have new or fully charged batteries and notifications that are properly activated to get the right emergency contacts.

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Make sure your doorbells and cameras have a clear Have a view of your front door that is not obstructed by debris or decorations.


Tyler Lizenby / CNET

When it comes to cameras, make sure the lens is free of dirt, cobwebs, or decor that could obscure the view. If you've reduced your sensitivity to movement or your camera has ignored movement in some areas of your home, it's time to bring those features to maximum alertness. Finally, make sure all notification settings are set to notify the appropriate people at the appropriate times.

Environmental Detectors

Leak, smoke, and carbon monoxide detectors provide peace of mind every day, and more when you're out of town. Make sure that all of these batteries have a fresh Wi-Fi connection, updated apps or firmware, and correct notification settings before you set off.

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Make sure that detectors and sensors are turned on and can notify you in the event of an incident.


Chris Monroe / CNET

If your detectors are not connected to a live monitoring service, it's even more important to send a notification to the right mobile device. This will allow you to ask a friend or neighbor to check suspicious notifications.

Robotic vacuum cleaner and other small appliances

There are several robotic vacuum cleaners with one version of a planning option. If this feature is used frequently, turn it off while you are away. When nobody is at home, the vacuum does not have to run. If you have increased the sensitivity of the motion detector part of your safety system (as I suggested), a robotic vacuum could trigger false alarms.

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Some devices, such as robotic vacuums, may not need to run their normal schedule while you're away.


Patricia Puentes / CNET

You save battery life and wear your vacuum by making sure it does not run when it's not needed. The same is true for other small devices that can run on an intelligent schedule or with smart switches. Run the list of managed devices to make sure that everything is turned on or off appropriately.


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