If you want to upgrade the technology in your Shakopee home without doing something too drastic, consider adding smart plugs. These plugs can help transform a variety of simple devices into connected and intelligent appliances. Explore the various elements of smart electrical plugs to see how you can incorporate them into your house.

Smart Plug Basics

Also referred to as Wi-Fi plugs or smart outlets, smart plugs are a type of compact device that goes into your home’s standard electrical outlets. They allow you to automate and control non-smart, traditional devices because they provide a layer of intelligence. These plugs have Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connectivity so that you can remotely manage the appliances that you connect to them via voice commands or dedicated apps.

Create timers or schedules with the plugs to automate device operation. This helps improve security and efficiency in your home. You can use voice assistants such as Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa or Apple HomeKit so that you can control devices hands-free. There is an energy monitoring ability built-in to the smart plugs. This tells you how much power your connected devices are consuming. If you already have a smart home platform, you can integrate these plugs into the system. This allows you to create automation routines and scenes.

Choosing Smart Plugs

If you have a smart home system, make sure that your chosen smart plugs are compatible. You should also verify compatibility with the devices you want to connect and to any voice assistant that you wish to use.

Pick between Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. The Bluetooth plugs are generally best for specific use cases since they have a limited range. If you want remote control and broader compatibility, the Wi-Fi plugs are a better option.

Check the smartphone app that comes with the plugs to make sure that it has what you need. Explore the scheduling options, scene setting options, user-friendly interfaces, energy monitoring abilities and automation routines.

These plugs come in different designs and sizes. Some of them will not block adjacent outlets, so if you have limited space, this is a consideration.

If you want easy access to USB ports, make sure that your chosen plug has them. This makes it easy to charge your devices without needing to use an outlet since the USB port is in addition to the primary outlet.

When you need to connect several devices in one specific area, check out smart plugs that have multiple outlets or those that can go into a power strip. This is ideal for certain spaces, such as a workstation or an entertainment center, since there will be multiple electronic devices to plug in.

Smart Plug Setup

If you are unfamiliar with setting up smart plugs, it is best to have an experienced electrician do it. This will ensure safe and proper installation since there are several steps in the process.

The first step is putting the plug into your standard electrical outlet. Make sure that your Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connection in that area is stable. Next, you download the app and create an account if you do not already have one. Use the instructions in the app to add your smart plug to it. You will also usually need to connect the plug to your home’s Wi-Fi network.

Configure the device settings and customize them to your preferences. If you are using a voice assistant, connect it to the plug. Lastly, test the remote control abilities to ensure that your connected devices and appliances respond to your commands.

Smart Plug Uses

Use smart plugs with your automation routines. For example, create a morning routine that will turn on your coffee maker and lights with a simple command.

You can create a schedule to help save energy in your home. For example, when there is inactivity, have the plugs turn off certain devices.

These plugs are ideal for holiday lighting because you can set festive lighting schedules. You can also use the remote control features to turn the lights off or on.

When you are away from home, turn some lights on or off to make it look like someone is home. This helps increase the security of your property.

Control your entertainment system without needing to get up and do it manually. For example, switch between your gaming system and your television by using the associated smartphone app.

Have more control over your home’s indoor air quality and temperature. You can connect heaters, fans and air purifiers to the plugs so that you can control them easier.

Optimize your home office so that you can get it ready before you even step inside. Turn on your computer and other devices so that everything loads and is ready for use as soon as you start working.

If you have any electric pet care items, you can use smart plugs for these. Remotely control your pet’s heating pads and automated feeders so that you can care for your pets even when you are away from home.

Common Issues

You might experience connectivity issues with your smart plugs. Make sure that the plugs are within range of your Bluetooth or Wi-Fi and that there is no electronic device interference causing a problem. A recent change in your Wi-Fi network will also require you to update the plug with the new network name and password for it to work properly.

If a device is not responding, make sure that the device itself is not malfunctioning. You might also need to update the firmware via the app or restart the smart plug.

Sometimes, adding a new smart plug to the app may not work right away. If you are carefully following the manufacturer’s instructions with no luck, reset the smart plug and try again.

When you give a plug a voice command and it does not respond, make sure that it is correctly linked. You might also need to update the firmware for the voice assistant.

There are times when the scheduling might become inconsistent. Check the schedules that you set and make sure that they have the correct configuration. You should also make sure that none of the schedules are overlapping as this could result in inconsistencies.

If none of the above solutions solve the problem, talk to an electrician. They can come in and test the plugs giving you trouble to let you know if they can fix them or if you need to replace them with a new one.

Electrical Experts in Shakopee

Smart plugs are a way to bring efficiency, convenience and automation into your Shakopee home. Our team can help you learn more about these plugs and aid you in determining how they will most benefit your home. We can also assist with your other electrical needs, such as rewiring, lighting upgrades or installing a new electrical panel. Call Finch Home Solutions in Shakopee to learn more about smart plugs and how they can benefit your home.

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