The Functioning of Electric Shades
Do you remember watching old Science Fiction movies? Robots that followed instructions? A supervillain’s den where doors used to open and close with the snap of fingers or with simple voice instructions? Sending voice commands to an AI to do your bidding? While all this was too outlandish to be taken seriously a few years back, it has become a reality now. A reality that has reached the confines of our living space. Artificial intelligence defines our way of living, and this is the new normal.
Today, smart homes are operated via products such as Amazon Echo and Google Home. Whenever you want to turn off the light bulb, you need not flick off the switch. All you say is, “Ok Google, turn off the light in my bedroom.” If you want the Alexa to entertain you, you just instruct, “Alexa, play me the latest Taylor Swift song.” There are few things these devices do not do.
The arena of window treatments with respect to the home automation system is slightly different. In order to synchronize the window treatments with smart technology, you need the additional support of a Z-Wave hub. By integrating it, you stand to enjoy a multitude of benefits that the electric shades bring to you.
1. Smartphone Access: After installing the Z Wave app, you can have any window shade in any room operated through clicking the button for not just the basic opening/shutting of blinds but also to schedule their timings. You can do this stuff from anywhere: you just need to be well-aware of which shades are installed in which room. You wouldn’t want the shades to open in a room facing the sun in the middle of the afternoon when you have a child or a pet inside.
2. Skylight Shades: Do you think you can afford to get a ladder to operate a skylight shade at different times of the day, or during different seasons? If you enjoy physical work, it’s another story. However, when you have electric shades in place, why bother with hard-to-reach windows when you can merely “instruct” your Z-Wave enabled technology to do the job for you? This feature can be equally applicable in case of hard-to-reach or taller windows in the living room, attic, bedroom or bathroom.
3. Unattended Home: Sure, you’re a busy person. You spend most of your time at work or while travelling around the country. There are times when you need to leave your home unattended, and this is when it becomes prone to intruders. It might be even more troubling when you have a helpless pet or a child at home. What do you do? Schedule the timings of your shade beforehand. Set them up to close at, say, 7 every evening and open at 8 in the morning. To the outsider, this will give the impression that the home is occupied at all times, thus keeping it safe and protected.
4. Safe Against Damage: Remember the time when your kid couldn’t resist the temptation to pull the cord of your favorite blind out of shape. Or when your dog chew on the blinds that you had spent a fortune on. Now if you decide to have electric motorized shades installed, it would be an added advantage to get them in places that are out of reach for both of them. Because a) you don’t require cords that run the risk of being destroyed, and b) they can be operated from a distance.
The Major Types of Electric Shades
If there is one brand that has introduced motorized shades to the consumers, with a wide variety of window treatment options replete with a multitude of features, it is Graber. Offering solutions that provide the perfect blend of form and function, it boasts of products that are in line with consumer trends and experiences. So there are window shades for standard and bay windows, sliding doors and French doors, as well as skylights.
I had smart motorized cellular shades at my bay window in my living room, before moved to a new apartment. That bay window had a sitting space right next to it, where I often read morning newspapers and enjoyed my snacks between meals. It overlooked my front verandah and I heard birds chirping every morning. That was a most pleasant sight, and despite the area facing temperatures that dipped to under four degrees during winters and above 45 degrees in summers, I never felt uncomfortable. This was because of the structure of the blackout fabric of the double-cell shades, which trapped both hot and cold winds and made the room warm during winters and cool during summers.
Besides, I never faced any problems during their operation, as they did not have the dangling cords which become faulty over time. I had my smartphone connected with the Z Wave automation system, thus allowing myself to control their movement from a distance, multiple times a day.
Currently, in my newly furnished apartment, as mentioned earlier, I have the Z-Wave Solar Shades, and I don’t suppose I will ever part with them. Besides their excellent functionality and sophisticated design, they’re a treat to behold. They easily cover the large dimensions of my tall and wide windows and offer an unhindered view of my front lawn even when they are drawn all the way down. They make my days worthwhile, and as I am working from home most of my days, my living room is one area I perpetually inhabit. Coupled with my smartphone, my voice assistant allows me effortless control over their movement. Before settling on my favorite color (Vanguard Cortina) and the ideal opacity level (3%), I had a variety of options to choose from in various styles and openness levels.
It’s not rocket science, and you don’t need to be an expert to operate these shades. User-friendly instructions and an easy-to-understand setup has ensured that electric shades are basically plugged and play and can be operated by anyone in the home. You still have the option to call your manufacturer in case you face any roadblock in using them. With video tutorials and knowledge of anything even remotely related to Z-Wave enabled shades widely available on the internet, you’re in safe hands.