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How to Automate Your Existing Motorized Window Shades

Automate Existing Window Shades

Motorized and Smart Shades

Shades and blinds have come a long way. From simpler times, shades were operated with the help of cords and that’s the way these functioned for a long time. The last few decades changed our outlook on the way we interact with our homes greatly. They witnessed rapid technological advancements that significantly influenced the functionality of home devices and appliances, including window treatments. Window blind operation was gradually motorized and cords came to be replaced by remote-controlled mechanisms. A press of a button on your remotes was all that was needed to raise and lower the shades. No more unruly cords pooling over the floor causing health hazards for kids and pets.

Motorized window treatments are beneficial to all, residential or commercial. The customers feel great to know that they can control individual or multiple shades with a simple touch of a button. They are particularly perfect for the high to reach windows which are a pain to control manually.

If motorized shades were a revelation, automated shades can be called a revolution. The smart automated shades are integrated into your home network which allows them to be controlled from your smartphones or through home assistants like Amazon Echo and Google Home.

We all know that smart shades can be expensive and replacing each one of them in the house would be quite an undertaking. Given the cost involved you would be tempted to continue with the existing shades. So is there a way out? Can you keep your existing motorized shades and enjoy the benefits and features of automated shades? The good news is that there are a few ways to automate your existing shades, however, its availability may depend on what type of shades you currently have.
Smart Motorized Roman Shades

Somfy’s RTS Motorized Shades & ZRSTI

Graber’s Somfy RTS motorized shades offer a fantastic experience for its users. They come pre-programmed with upper and lower limits and you can set an intermediate position. The controls are also programmed by the manufacturers to operate your shades.

Graber offers motorized shades and blinds that use Somfy motors, accessories and controls. The components use Somfy’s exclusive Radio Technology Somfy (RTS) radio frequency protocols. RTS allows you to select the combination of controls that is required to suit your needs. The motors can have multiple or single control programmed into them.
Graber offers a number of interface devices that can be added to existing or new motorized shades to help them integrate seamlessly with your home automation system. This brings us to ZRTSI or Z-Wave to Radio Technology Somfy Interface (ZRTSI). This is a Z-Wave bridge controller that is equipped to receive Z-Wave transmissions, translating them into motor control commands for Somfy’s RTS motors. A ZRTSI inhabits your Z-Wave Network as a bridge controller and becomes a recurring node in the mesh network. It has one base node and 16 virtual nodes. And these 16 virtual nodes can correspond to 16 RTS channels. A ZRTSI can be inserted into any standard outlet and requires 110V AC.

A ZRTSI has to be paired with RTS motors. To do that:
1. ZRSTI base node has to be included into Z-Wave network.
2. ZRSTI virtual nodes has to be then included into the Z-Wave network.
3. The next step involves RTS programming. The RTS motorized products must be fully operational from independent RTS control when they are being programmed with ZRTSI.
4. One they are programmed the RTS channels must be tested to see that they are functioning.
Once ZRTSI and RTS motors of Graber shades are paired, you can use your smart hub app to access the shades from your smartphones or tablet.

Upgrading your existing motorized Somfy shades to automated ones is now easy as a pie with ZRTSI. Plug in ZRSTI, follow few simple steps and bingo you can operate your shades from phones. Pair them up with home assistants like Amazon Echo and Google Home and use voice-commands.
Somfy Motorized Shades

Comfortex Smart Controller

The Simplicity Smart Controller is driven by NEO Smart Blinds App and is a device that can be installed at home. It will allow your shades to automatically open and close and also set raising and lowering times for all Simplicity motorized shades of Comfortex. You can download the app and control it from your smartphones or tablets. It is an easy and hassle-free way of upgrading motorized shades to smart ones.
Remote Control Shades

Smart Hub for Crown Motorized Shades

We are always working to make your experience with our products the best. We have seen how you can upgrade your existing Somfy RTS and Comfortex motorized shades to automated ones to be able to enjoy smart features and benefits. There is good news for those using Crown Motorized shades (or our Zebra Sheer Shades), as we are coming out with a smart hub for them. The Smart Hub will allow your Crown motorized shades to enjoy the benefits of automated shades with ease. Simply pair your shades to the hub to gain control using a phone app, allowing you to set scheduled operations.

So now that you know what you have to do, waste no time! Get yourself the devices that you need today to give your existing motorized shades a functional makeover and bask in the glory of your new smart shades. The above options are great ways to get the benefits of automated scheduling without replacing your shades entirely.

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