Home Assistant Home Automation Z Wave

Home Automation…. reinventing the wheel

A few months back I had a catastrophic failure with the Raspberry Pi that had been running my Home Automation Platform (Home Assistant). Long Story short, I reached the physical limit of writes available on an SD Card. Who knew you could reach that limit on less than 2 years if you are running an a Home Automation System, Logging Location Services, Temperature monitoring, well as an MQTT Broker on the same box?? 

Unfortunately my schedule did not allow for me to rebuild my Raspberry Pi sooner, and I am kind of glad that it did. During the time of being Home Assistant-less, I learned that I was really not using it to it’s fullest extent and that overtime most of the features that I depended on it for had been transitioned over to my Google Home/Smart Things Hub, or my kids ended up reprogramming (more on this later).
I started to think about what I really needed Home Assistant for, well besides turning on my Z Wave Controlled office lights for me (that was very handy). I also thought about how my Google Homes had been taking over my life. Then it occurred to me. 90% of what I use my Google Homes for is Voice controlling my lights. That is not Automation, 4 times out of 10 I have to repeat myself to get it to work, and the effort of turning on a light switch with my hand is not very taxing. 
Really, I am just being lazy….. End of Story!
Just kidding….
In all seriousness I decided to get back to basics and figure out what I had going on in my house that could use Automating and here is a list of projects I have come up with that I will do blog posts about in the future.
  • Install Philips Hue Lights (the wife bought me these about a year ago, Time I put them to work)
  • Automating Dehumidifier – using a Z Wave humidity sensor and a WEMO Outlet
  • Automating Basement Space Heater – Same concept as above
  • Automating Office Fan – Now this one is going to be tricky. I am not sure if I want it to turn on when I open the door, or at a certain temperature. 
  • Automating my Bearded Dragon’s Lights – Using a WiFi Enabled power strip
  • Automating Exterior lights – Using Presence of all family members and time of day
I have other lists of things that I would like to do down the road, but for now, this should keep me busy. 
Just so you are aware, I do have vanilla Home Assistant running on my Raspberry Pi 3 B+ and I am still trying to figure out what I am going to do about an MQTT Broker to communicate with my Smart Things Hub. I have been playing around with Docker and I am thinking that is a good place for it to live, as well as hosting it on a separate Pi or Linux machine. 
Come September my schedule will be going back to crazy, if not worse with some additional things I am putting on my plate which I hope to talk about soon.