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  • Originally posted by dxmnkd316 View Post
    Neat. I found out Xcel installed a smart gas meter sometime last year and now I'm pulling in live readings down to the cubic foot level (0.01 therms) using just a usb dongle*. I also managed to setup an automation to scrape Xcel's website for monthly gas rates to give me an estimated cost. Now I have live data showing how much gas we're using and the true cost of things like the water heater.

    they're going to be installing a smart electrical meter in about a month so I'll be grabbing that data too. I'm actually hoping to lower my energy bill by taking advantage of the demand rates that will eventually be coming.

    *same dongle that listens for the radio signal my water meter puts out. Which is cool.

    edit: I explained all of this to my wife and she cut right through the bulls_hit.

    me: *excitedly explained everything*
    her: so what's this do for us?
    me: well, we can find ways to be more energy efficient and lower our gas costs
    her: oh, so it's just a way for you to tell me to be colder.
    me:
    Dangerously smart. My sympathies.

    Comment


    • I’m going to be listing my house end of the month, but not too encouraged by this market.

      if this sale doesn’t go as expected I may not even want to own again. I’ve sold one home previously and somehow I managed to hit a down time when I sold my first house. Figured selling in spring this time would change it up, but no one thought rates would actually be rising and sounds like market is very mixed.

      I guess selling low means buying low, maybe.

      on related note- Woodbury may be out of my future locations. I spent more time waiting at stoplights in Woodbury yesterday than it took me to drive from Edina to Woodbury. Western burbs have more traffic but Jesus it moves

      Comment


      • Originally posted by dxmnkd316 View Post

        I have virtually everything automated now. I run Home Assistant to unify everything. AMA.

        (appliances need not apply. **** that.)
        Had to go way back for this. I have two smart switches (adding the smart switch to the porch/yard light switch was so great everytime I came home in the dark this winter and forgot to turn it on) and two smart outlets controlling various lights around the house.

        i am debating in dabbling with smart bulbs. I am well aware smart switches are best for dumb bulbs, and smart bulbs are best on always powered lamps/lights.


        Long story long, what is the best brand for smart bulbs?


        I have a grudge against Phillips after their outdoor LED Christmas lights (can retell that story in another post), and currently have Kasa smart switches/outlets. But could be convinced (also not a fan that their hub needs to babysit my router).

        Looking to not need eighty bazillion apps because I need to make it easy for my wife to control on her phone (we use Google Home to consolidate all our smart features because Google forced Nest products to use home (more accurately slowed supporting the Nest app)

        Currently have Kasa, Samsung Smartthings, and Google Home (as the unifier). No hubs, just wifi connections.
        “Demolish the bridges behind you… then there is no choice but to build again.”

        Live Radio from 100.3

        Comment


        • Originally posted by aparch View Post

          Had to go way back for this. I have two smart switches (adding the smart switch to the porch/yard light switch was so great everytime I came home in the dark this winter and forgot to turn it on) and two smart outlets controlling various lights around the house.

          i am debating in dabbling with smart bulbs. I am well aware smart switches are best for dumb bulbs, and smart bulbs are best on always powered lamps/lights.


          Long story long, what is the best brand for smart bulbs?


          I have a grudge against Phillips after their outdoor LED Christmas lights (can retell that story in another post), and currently have Kasa smart switches/outlets. But could be convinced (also not a fan that their hub needs to babysit my router).

          Looking to not need eighty bazillion apps because I need to make it easy for my wife to control on her phone (we use Google Home to consolidate all our smart features because Google forced Nest products to use home (more accurately slowed supporting the Nest app)

          Currently have Kasa, Samsung Smartthings, and Google Home (as the unifier). No hubs, just wifi connections.
          Philips hue is the undisputed king of bulbs.
          my only tip is watch Costco online gor them.

          they're the only smart device I haven't had a problem with. They don't need a hub. As long as you have a zigbee dongle of your own and something like home assistant.

          I use the hub because there's nothing a smart bulb can read that I care about data being snooped. If you're really concerned, put them on an isolated vlan.
          Last edited by dxmnkd316; 03-07-2024, 07:29 AM.
          Code:
          As of 9/21/10:         As of 9/13/10:
          College Hockey 6       College Football 0
          BTHC 4                 WCHA FC:  1
          Originally posted by SanTropez
          May your paint thinner run dry and the fleas of a thousand camels infest your dead deer.
          Originally posted by bigblue_dl
          I don't even know how to classify magic vagina smoke babies..
          Originally posted by Kepler
          When the giraffes start building radio telescopes they can join too.
          He's probably going to be a superstar but that man has more baggage than North West

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Deutsche Gopher Fan View Post
            I’m going to be listing my house end of the month, but not too encouraged by this market.

            if this sale doesn’t go as expected I may not even want to own again. I’ve sold one home previously and somehow I managed to hit a down time when I sold my first house. Figured selling in spring this time would change it up, but no one thought rates would actually be rising and sounds like market is very mixed.

            I guess selling low means buying low, maybe.

            on related note- Woodbury may be out of my future locations. I spent more time waiting at stoplights in Woodbury yesterday than it took me to drive from Edina to Woodbury. Western burbs have more traffic but Jesus it moves
            Yeah some Woodbury lights are tremendously bad

            rhe only way to win the housing market is to sell and rent at peak hoping you timed it perfectly. Otherwise you're just wasting money on a landlord.
            otherwise buy bigger when prices are depressed. Yeah you take a hit on the tail end but you hope you can make it up on the next one when it appreciates.

            renting is almost always a bad financial choice when you can afford to own.
            Code:
            As of 9/21/10:         As of 9/13/10:
            College Hockey 6       College Football 0
            BTHC 4                 WCHA FC:  1
            Originally posted by SanTropez
            May your paint thinner run dry and the fleas of a thousand camels infest your dead deer.
            Originally posted by bigblue_dl
            I don't even know how to classify magic vagina smoke babies..
            Originally posted by Kepler
            When the giraffes start building radio telescopes they can join too.
            He's probably going to be a superstar but that man has more baggage than North West

            Comment


            • Originally posted by dxmnkd316 View Post

              Philips hue is the undisputed king of bulbs.
              my only tip is watch Costco online gor them.

              ...
              Not so much worried about the Chinese Governement accessing my data via smart lights. Haha. Just moreso annoyed that I'd have to have the Philips Hub ethernet connected to my router instead of conspicuously placed out of the way and closer to where the lights would be.

              I also dont want eighty smart bulbs directly connecting to my wifi (just seems like overkill), but was originally leaning toward Kasa since I'm already in their ecosystem with plugs and switches.

              The more I dig and ask, it seems Kasa is good if I want a cheap smart bulb to dabble with, without going outside the ecosystems Im using. But Hue seems to be the one I should get looking ahead at future options (syncing with Razer gaming hardware the wife currently uses, syncing with my Samsung TVs)

              So I'll probably just wait for the Hue bundles to go on sale. It's not something I need to add right away.

              *edit* Hue also has smart bulbs for specialty lamps like the GU10 spotlights (reading lights in my Ikea lamps, and candelabra /narrow base bulbs (like my Ikea nightstand lamps use).
              Last edited by aparch; 03-07-2024, 12:48 PM.
              “Demolish the bridges behind you… then there is no choice but to build again.”

              Live Radio from 100.3

              Comment


              • Backstory of my wariness of Philips products.

                Four years ago, (fall 2019) I bought about eight boxes of the Philips Illuminate Smart LED outdoor Christmas lights, and two starter kits (two locations to control in my yard). Installed them around the eaves of my house and garage. They worked great for about two weeks. Then after a wet snow/freezing rain, most of the strands became unresponsive in the app and defaulted to a solid blue color (with no way of changing the color).

                Turns out, when one of the LEDs in the strand goes bad, the smart lights aren't so smart and the rest of the LEDs also stop responding.

                Took the lights down and found out Philips (whom I had respected and their name is why I bought these) sold the rights to use their name to a small company in Minnesota named "Seasonal Specialties."

                To be fair, Seasonal Specialties customer service was fantastic, but they're obviously a small company just doing their best, as their response was "send the light strings in, we'll replace them."

                But thanks to the pandemic, it took almost eight months for the replacements to arrive. Reasons for the delay started with "well, we have low supply of replacements currently," to "We can't send replacements until we get unsold merchandise returned from the retailers despite the season being over," to the pandemic, to "we still haven't gotten unsold merchandise back from retailers."

                Finally got replacement strands shipped to me before October 2020. Tried them, they all worked, great!

                Left them in the box until the beginning of November. Hung them on the house where they lasted all of one week before having the same blue light error.

                E-mailed Seasonal Specialties customer service again and asked for resolution to again having broken lights Their response? Just box them all back to us and we'll refund you.

                So I did just that. Boxed everything up and got sent a check from them two months later.


                You know what Christmas lights haven't given me any troubles? The dumb GE LED lights from Lowes. I do miss the ability to change their colors or set patterns like the Seasonal Specialties ones promised.
                Last edited by aparch; 03-07-2024, 12:43 PM.
                “Demolish the bridges behind you… then there is no choice but to build again.”

                Live Radio from 100.3

                Comment


                • Originally posted by dxmnkd316 View Post

                  Yeah some Woodbury lights are tremendously bad

                  rhe only way to win the housing market is to sell and rent at peak hoping you timed it perfectly. Otherwise you're just wasting money on a landlord.
                  otherwise buy bigger when prices are depressed. Yeah you take a hit on the tail end but you hope you can make it up on the next one when it appreciates.

                  renting is almost always a bad financial choice when you can afford to own.
                  But the world is sorta built for dual income now, or at least it certainly feels like it. Imagine buying a home now- not a decade ago- now- and only having one income. And what if you get a 30k home maintenance surprise? Harder to cover that on one normal income.

                  in terms of insurance, changes are coming. Likely no more full roof replacements, no more replacing a few pieces of siding for tiny storm damage so color matches, properties with large trees near home will get more expensive to insure

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by aparch View Post
                    Not so much worried about the Chinese Governement accessing my data via smart lights. Haha. Just moreso annoyed that I'd have to have the Philips Hub ethernet connected to my router instead of conspicuously placed out of the way and closer to where the lights would be.

                    I also dont want eighty smart bulbs directly connecting to my wifi (just seems like overkill), but was originally leaning toward Kasa since I'm already in their ecosystem with plugs and switches.

                    The more I dig and ask, it seems Kasa is good if I want a cheap smart bulb to dabble with, without going outside the ecosystems Im using. But Hue seems to be the one I should get looking ahead at future options (syncing with Razer gaming hardware the wife currently uses, syncing with my Samsung TVs)

                    So I'll probably just wait for the Hue bundles to go on sale. It's not something I need to add right away.

                    *edit* Hue also has smart bulbs for specialty lamps like the GU10 spotlights (reading lights in my Ikea lamps, and candelabra /narrow base bulbs (like my Ikea nightstand lamps use).
                    Do not use WiFi. For the love of god.

                    zigbee, thread, or caseta (433 mhz)*. Do not use WiFi. It works until it doesn't and when it doesn't it REALLY doesn't. Especially for hardwired switches. I have a couple that work pretty well. But when they don't, you're basically down to turning off breakers.

                    *Everything I've read is that despite the upfront cost of the hub, Caseta is the best solution. It's on its own frequency that's fairly open at 433 MHz. Zigbee sits between the primary WiFi channels. They're subject to interference but generally very reliable. Never had an issue with ANY zigbee in the slightest except for the garage light that's the furthest from any other device and has three walls between its nearest neighbor. ANYWAYS....

                    stay away from WiFi. Make sure you get UL or FM stamped devices.
                    Code:
                    As of 9/21/10:         As of 9/13/10:
                    College Hockey 6       College Football 0
                    BTHC 4                 WCHA FC:  1
                    Originally posted by SanTropez
                    May your paint thinner run dry and the fleas of a thousand camels infest your dead deer.
                    Originally posted by bigblue_dl
                    I don't even know how to classify magic vagina smoke babies..
                    Originally posted by Kepler
                    When the giraffes start building radio telescopes they can join too.
                    He's probably going to be a superstar but that man has more baggage than North West

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Deutsche Gopher Fan View Post

                      But the world is sorta built for dual income now, or at least it certainly feels like it. Imagine buying a home now- not a decade ago- now- and only having one income. And what if you get a 30k home maintenance surprise? Harder to cover that on one normal income.

                      in terms of insurance, changes are coming. Likely no more full roof replacements, no more replacing a few pieces of siding for tiny storm damage so color matches, properties with large trees near home will get more expensive to insure
                      That's a really good point and I hadn't considered that. Things have changed since I was single and had a mortgage. **** was cheap back then.

                      We could stand $5-10k but $30k would **** anyone. Not sure that's a reasonable What If number. If that's the case you take out a HELOC or you sell.
                      Code:
                      As of 9/21/10:         As of 9/13/10:
                      College Hockey 6       College Football 0
                      BTHC 4                 WCHA FC:  1
                      Originally posted by SanTropez
                      May your paint thinner run dry and the fleas of a thousand camels infest your dead deer.
                      Originally posted by bigblue_dl
                      I don't even know how to classify magic vagina smoke babies..
                      Originally posted by Kepler
                      When the giraffes start building radio telescopes they can join too.
                      He's probably going to be a superstar but that man has more baggage than North West

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by dxmnkd316 View Post

                        That's a really good point and I hadn't considered that. Things have changed since I was single and had a mortgage. **** was cheap back then.

                        We could stand $5-10k but $30k would **** anyone. Not sure that's a reasonable What If number. If that's the case you take out a HELOC or you sell.
                        My foundation fix was about $15k two years ago. We took out a 0% loan if paid within the year, otherwise 20% APR. We lived very cheaply for a year, beat the clock my two weeks.
                        "The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command." George Orwell, 1984

                        "One does not simply walk into Mordor. Its Black Gates are guarded by more than just Orcs. There is evil there that does not sleep, and the Great Eye is ever watchful. It is a barren wasteland, riddled with fire and ash and dust, the very air you breathe is a poisonous fume." Boromir

                        "Good news! We have a delivery." Professor Farnsworth

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                        • I'm also on the learning journey and would love to know what's guiding you. Also please visit this for more information https://rainguardroofs.com/

                          Comment


                          • No, i will not make out with you!
                            "The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command." George Orwell, 1984

                            "One does not simply walk into Mordor. Its Black Gates are guarded by more than just Orcs. There is evil there that does not sleep, and the Great Eye is ever watchful. It is a barren wasteland, riddled with fire and ash and dust, the very air you breathe is a poisonous fume." Boromir

                            "Good news! We have a delivery." Professor Farnsworth

                            Comment


                            • Of course two weeks before I list my house, the dryer craps out.

                              it’s a Samsung. So even if I wanted to try and service, no one services them. I curse the person who was dumb enough to purchase Samsung appliances

                              Comment


                              • Totally agree. House repair costs can be a real concern, especially when unexpected issues arise. From fixing a leaky roof to updating outdated plumbing, the expenses can quickly add up. It's essential to budget carefully and prioritize repairs based on urgency and affordability. I recently decided to change some furniture. I'm glad I found gardner white where I was able to buy a lot of items for reasonable prices.

                                Last edited by akerry; 03-23-2024, 06:03 PM.

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