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What's The Difference Between Home Security and Home Automation?

Posted: October 14, 2014

Despite the name similarities, home security and home automation are not the same thing. Home automation can include home security, but there’s actually much more to it than that. If you’re considering getting a home security system (or updating your current system), you’ll likely hear a lot about home automation. While researching and before you purchase anything, it’s best to understand the terms that salespeople and security professionals are going to use. Here’s the difference between home security and home automation:

Home Security

Home security refers to many different things, which all have something in common: they help protect your home from unwanted intruders. Home security is usually used in reference to things like door and window locks, a security system that monitors doors and windows, security cameras, motion-detecting lights, safes, and really anything that helps keep your home, or the possessions inside your home, secure. Remember: home security doesn’t mean home automation.

Home Automation

Home automation is literally the automation of the technology in your home. It usually includes things like your thermostat, security locks, smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, lights, and security systems. It can also include things like your oven, refrigerator, garage door, TV and entertainment centers, blinds and curtains, intercoms, automatic pet feeders, and much more. Home automation is usually controlled from a smartphone, tablet, or computer, but some automated home systems simply run on a preprogramed schedule from a control panel on the wall. The more technology advances, the more mobile-based home automation becomes. Home automation is a part of a bigger idea of the “Internet of things,” meaning that all electronics will be connected through a system. So, home automation can, and should, encompass home security. If you’re currently shopping for a home security system, consider setting up home automation technology. Keep in mind that you don’t have to connect everything if you don’t want to. Automating your security system and thermostat doesn’t mean that your TV and door locks need to be automated… it just means you get to pick and choose what’s automated and what isn’t.

What’s the Benefit?

Home security benefits are obvious in the fact that your home should be safer. Home automation benefits, on the other hand, might not be so obvious. You’ll know what’s going on in and around your home anytime of the day. You’ll be able to know if you locked all the doors that morning, or if your thermostat is set too high, and you’ll be able to make changes to your home remotely. Knowing you left the back door unlocked is one thing, but being able to lock it from your phone is another. Home automation may also save you money in the long run. It allows you to turn off anything you left on or are not using while you’re away. You’re not going to be home for six hours? Don’t heat an empty home. With home automation, you can turn down the thermostat from your phone when you leave the house, which may save you quite a bit of money over the years. The differences between home security and home automation aren’t glaring, but it’s worth knowing that the two work really well together. Your home automation and home security systems can work perfectly well on their own, but when connected to one another, chances are good that you’ll be able to increase your home’s protection significantly. More importantly, home automation is about choices; so even if you choose to combine the two forces, you still have full control.