An Automated Home Helps Keep Contractors HonestBy Robert Siciliano Apr 5, 2011 | 10:10:00 amPosted in:
I’m in Mexico, but by the time this is posted I’ll be manning the watch tower at my fort. While I want to detail every adventure and post it as a status update (this country is very interesting), I haven’t, and I’ll never post in social media, that’s just plain nuts.
So anyways, while I’m gone I’m having a considerable amount of work done to the castle such as floor sanding and painting. It’s all stuff that’s better off being done while I’m gone because it’s somewhat unhealthy (and very inconvenient) to live around. Painting and the dust and polyurethane fumes generated from floor sanding is just too much for babies. Plus I’m a delicate flower.
I have no less than half dozen workers in and out of my home over the course of 2 weeks and lots can go wrong when the homeowner isn’t there to observe.
Mistakes can be made and stuff can be stolen. I locked up most of what’s valuable, but things like desktop PCs are just too difficult to remove and relocate.
But no fear, thanks to my automated home system I’m able to monitor every detail of the process. My home security cameras can be accessed from my laptop and iPhone to monitor where the contractors are supposed to be and more importantly where they aren’t supposed to be in the home while I’m away.
The first contractor was the floor sander. And, did that process need my involvement from thousands of miles away?! When they first got to the home they needed to access the fusebox to tap into it so the sander wouldn’t constantly pop a breaker. They never told me they needed to do that. Anyway, I directed them to the fusebox from afar and monitored the bosses’ activity through my home and from my mechanical room camera. It’s a good thing too because he ran his power cable out the window and when he was done he never shut the window. I knew this because my ADT Pulse™ home automation system alerted me that the window was open because of a sensor installed on it. It rained and snowed that night and if I didn’t call him back to shut the window, it would have been a wet mess that would have caused interior damage.
Prior to leaving, I had shut off the heat because you don’t want the forced hot air furnace blowing dust around or sucking dust into a return air when sanding. But when he applied the polyurethane it was too cold inside and didn’t dry enough for him to complete the job over the two days allocated for the project. If he had to come back again on a third day he was going to charge me extra he said.
I was able to avert an extra charge and turn my home automated heat back on from Mexico via my iPhone and even raise the temperature to a toasty 75 to quickly dry the floor. Problem solved!
And then, there were the painters. Oh boy. That’s another story.
Robert Siciliano personal and home security specialist to Home Security Source discussing ADT Pulse™ on Fox News. Disclosures
How to Keep Contractors from “Going to Work” on Your Home
How to Prevent Home Contractor Fraud
Home Repair Scams Are In The Air
Snow Removal Scams Plague The Elderly
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