When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission.

Do Smart Plugs Work Away From Home?

Smart plugs are a popular addition to many smart homes, allowing you to control appliances with voice commands or through smartphone apps.

You might be wondering if these nifty gadgets work away from home, especially when integrated with digital assistants like Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa.

image 57

The good news is most smart plugs can indeed be controlled when you’re away from home, as long as they have an internet connection.

These devices typically connect to your home’s Wi-Fi network, enabling you to manage them remotely from anywhere, anytime.

It’s important to note, though, that certain smart plugs, especially budget options, may require you to be connected to the same Wi-Fi network as the device itself. In such cases, you won’t be able to control these plugs while you’re away.

So, when choosing a smart plug, it’s wise to look for one that supports remote connections for the best out-of-home control experience.

Setting Up and Controlling Smart Plugs Remotely

image 58

Using the App for Remote Control

To set up and control your smart plug remotely, you’ll typically use an app provided by the plug’s manufacturer. After connecting your smart plug to your Wi-Fi network, and downloading the app, you can then use the app to control your plugged-in device from anywhere with an internet connection. You can also schedule specific times for your smart plug to turn on or off, which is great for managing your energy usage or making it look like someone’s home when you’re away.

Voice Control with Smart Assistants

Like many smart devices, smart plugs don’t stop at app control. You can also utilize voice assistants, like Alexa, Siri, or Google Assistant, to manage your devices. To do this, you’ll need to connect your smart plug to your preferred voice assistant through their respective apps. Once set up, you can simply say commands like, “Alexa, turn on the living room lamp” or “Hey Siri, turn off the coffee maker,” and your smart plug will swiftly respond to your command.

As long as you’re properly connected to your home base, you can even use this function while away from home.

Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Connectivity

Most smart plugs use Wi-Fi to communicate with your phone, tablet, or smart speaker, allowing you to control your devices while away from home. Some smart plugs also offer Bluetooth connectivity, which can be helpful for controlling gadgets within a shorter range.

Keep in mind that if you’re relying solely on Bluetooth you won’t be able to control your devices remotely when you’re away from home. You’ll need a Wi-Fi connection to make that happen.

Smart Plugs Integration with Home Automation

image 60

Compatibility with Smart Home Devices

Smart plugs can be easily integrated with various smart home devices, including Alexa, Google Home, and Ring. These devices not only work with their own branded smart plugs, but are compatible with many third-party options. Both Alexa and Google Home, for example, support Zigbee and Z-Wave smart plugs, which are popular wireless communication protocols used in home automation. While it isn’t necessary to have a smart hub for all smart plugs, some smart plugs do require a hub, such as the Hue Bridge, for seamless operation.

Here’s a breakdown of smart plug compatibility with popular smart home devices:

  • Alexa: Works with most Zigbee, Z-Wave, and Wi-Fi smart plugs
  • Google Home: Compatible with a majority of Wi-Fi, Zigbee, and Z-Wave smart plugs
  • Ring: Supports a limited range of Z-Wave smart plugs

Using With Home Automation Platforms

Smart plugs can be easily incorporated into your overall home automation system by using platforms like IFTTT. IFTTT (If This Then That) is a popular automation service that allows you to create custom automated actions, or “applets,” which trigger your smart plugs based on specific events like entering or leaving your home.

You can create an IFTTT applet that turns on your smart plug connected to a lamp, for instance, when your Ring doorbell detects motion. This adds an extra layer of security and smart control to your home.

With IFTTT, you can also set timers or schedules for your smart plugs to turn on or off at specific times, ensuring your electrical devices only consume power when necessary.

Monitoring and Scheduling With Smart Plugs

Energy Monitoring and Consumption

With smart plugs, you can easily monitor your home’s energy consumption and cut down on wasteful usage. Some devices, like the Wemo Insight, offer built-in energy monitoring features that provide real-time data on energy usage. This information allows you to keep track of how much energy your appliances are using and make informed decisions to save on electricity costs. By closely monitoring your consumption, even while away from home, you’ll be able to identify energy-intensive devices and adjust their usage patterns as needed.

Benefits and Uses of Smart Plugs Away from Home

image 59

Smart plugs can be a great addition to your home security and automation setup, especially when you’re away from home. They allow you to control lights, lamps, and appliances remotely, giving you peace of mind while enhancing the convenience of managing your home.

You can use smart plugs to create the illusion that someone is at home, deterring potential intruders. Schedule your lights and lamps to turn on and off at various times, making it look like your house is always occupied. Some smart plugs even have “away mode,” which randomizes when the lights go on and off – a perfect feature for added security while away.

Taking control over your home appliances can save energy and prevent potential accidents while you’re away as well. Imagine you left your home in a hurry and can’t remember if you turned off the oven or not. With a smart plug, you can check its status and turn off the oven remotely, ensuring your home’s safety.

By choosing the right types of smart plugs, you can also keep an eye on your home’s environmental conditions. Some plugs come with built-in sensors for temperature and humidity, while others work seamlessly with compatible systems. You can monitor these conditions from your smartphone and make adjustments if needed, like turning on a fan, dehumidifier, or heater, all without actually being at home.

Along with all of this, using smart plugs while you’re away from home can contribute to a more eco-friendly lifestyle. You can track the energy consumption of your appliances, allowing you to better understand your usage patterns. With this knowledge, you can make small adjustments for more energy-efficient habits in your day-to-day life.

Remember to select the smart plugs that best suit your needs and are compatible with your devices, whether they’re indoors or outdoors. And always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and recommendations for safe, efficient use. This way you can enjoy the benefits and conveniences smart plugs offer, even when you’re away from home.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.