Turn on your Christmas lights the smart way
Are you tired of crawling under your Christmas tree to plugin the lights? Or wish your Christmas lights would turn on and off by themselves at certain times? Well you’re in luck as we will show you exactly how you can do this without breaking the bank.
Indoor Christmas Tree Lights
You can easily turn on/off your Christmas tree lights by using a smart plug from HBN. What are Smart Plugs? These are inexpensive devices that plug into a normal household receptacle and can be turned on or off using your phone/tablet , by setting timers or by voice commands (if you have Alexa or Google Home).
Making the HBN Smart Plug work on your phone
Installing the App on your phone/device will allow you to manually turn the smart plug on/off or have it controlled by the time of day. For example, turn on at 6pm and turn off at 11pm.
Before you begin make sure your phone/device is connected to your 2.4GHz Wi-Fi network.
The following instructions are also available in a video.
- Install the Smart Life App from your App Store. This would be Google Play or the Apple store depending on the type of phone/device you have. The App you need is called Smart Life and will have this icon Note: You can also use the HBN app found in the same app stores. The setup will be almost identical to the Smart Life App. Either will work great but in this tutorial we have chosen the Smart life
- Open the App and it will ask you to log in or sign up. Login if you already have an account or select Sign Up to create one.
- Next you need to read the user agreement and select Agree.
- On the next screen Register by providing your Country and Email address then select Get Verification Code. They will then send you a code by email. Enter the code on the space provided once received. Getting the code should only take a minute or less.
- You will then be asked for a Password. Enter one and select Done.
- We are almost there! Select the Add Device button to add your new smart plug.
- You will then be prompted to allow the App to access your location. Continue then Select “While using the app“.
- A list of devices will be displayed. Select the Socket (Wi-Fi) under the Electrical section.
- Next you need to provide your network name and password. This is needed to enable the smart plug to communicate with the App.
- Select Next and you should be presented with a screen asking you to reset the smart plug (if already plugged in first unplug for 10 seconds then plug it in). Press and hold the reset/power button on the side for 5 seconds. The button/light should start flashing to signify that it’s in the pairing state.
- Select Next then confirm the indicator is Blinking Quickly.
- The app will then begin searching for your smart plug on your network. This could take a minute to complete. When done you will get a screen stating your device was added successfully. Select Done to finish
Congratulations you are now connected to your smart plug and able to control it with the App. You should see a screen with a power button. Pressing this button will turn your smart plug On or Off.
Setting up a Timer for your smart plug
Let’s set a daily On/Off timer for your new smart plug.
- Select the Timer button/link at the bottom of your screen. The Schedule screen will be displayed.
- Select + Add Schedule
- Select the days you want the smart plug to be switch ON.
- Select the time (hour/minute)
- Select the Save button. You should now see the new ON schedule for the smart plug. You can disable this schedule at anytime by sliding the slide switch to Off
- Select + Add Schedule again to add the OFF schedule.
- This time you need to change the action to OFF. Select the ON link and choose OFF from the available options.
- Now set the Days and time as you did in the ON schedule for the OFF times/days. Then select Save.
- You should now see both the On and Off scheduled listed in the schedules list.
- Select the Back arrow at the top left of the screen to return to the main screen.
Naming your Smart plug
When you added your smart plug it was automatically given a default name of Switch 1 or similar. We need to change tis to something more appropriate for your switch.
- To name your new switch select the Edit icon on the top right of your screen.
- Select Device Information
- Enter a new name by selecting the current name then Save
- Select the Back arrow to return to the main screen. Your new name should no be display.
You are now done with the setup. Enjoy your new smart plug. Remember if you run into any problems you can always visit our Community form at https://senexhome.com and post your question.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
The most common cause for this is that phone is not on the same Wi-Fi network as the smart plug. In order for the smart plug to communicate it must be on your 2.4GHz network. I will not work on a 5GHz Wi-Fi network. You phone must also be on this same 2.4GHz Wi-Fi network.
When there is a power outage in your home, the smart plug will reconnect to your wifi network automatically and will retain all schedules and information configured. However, the plug will remain OFF when the power restores for safety reasons.
not exceed the maximum rating of what the timer can handle. Which is rated: 1875W Resistive / 15A, 625W Tungsten / 5A, 1/2 HP
Yes. This smart plug works with alexa.
It’s a small device that plugs into a standard home receptacle. You then plugin items like like lamps, appliances into the smart plug. You can then turn the device On and Off by using voice commands, time schedules or manually through a smart app.
Link Philips Hue to Google Home
In this tutorial we will be showing you how to link Philips Hue to Google Home Assistant. This will allow you to control and monitor your Hue Lights with Google. If you are looking to connect the Hue Motion to Google then you would be out of luck as Google Assistant does not support this sensor at this time.
If you are the kind of person that prefers videos over written articles then check out our video on our YouTube channel here. It contains the same information found in this article but in a easy to watch video format.
How to link Philips Hue to Google Home
To start we will need to open the Google Home App on your phone or tablet. Using this App we we will link Philips Hue to Google Home. Linking is the process of establishing a communications link between both online services. This linking is done over the Internet and will require your authorization to perform the link.
- To connect Philips Hue with Google Home select the Plus + button on the top of your Google Home screen.
- In the Add to home section select the Set up device.
- Select the Works with Google link to start linking Philips Hue.
4. A list of Linked services as well as a list of available services will be displayed. At this point you can scroll to find the Philips Hue service or a better option would be to use the search function.
5. Select Philips Hue from the list
6. After a few seconds you should a Log in screen for your Philips Hue account. This is the account you created when you installed the Philips Hue App. If you have not yet installed the Hue App then please do that before continuing with this tutorial. Enter your credentials and select Continue.
7. Because you are linking accounts using the Google Home App Philips Hue knows this and presents a Permissions screen. It is asking for your authorization to let the Google service communicate and control/monitor your Philip Hue devices. Select Yes to provide your permission.
8. At this point Philips Hue and Google Home will communicate and make the connection. You will then be brought back to the Set up a device screen. Use the Back navigation button ← to return to your Home screen.
9. Your Philips Hue devices should now appear on your Home screen. Scroll down until you locate your new devices.
10. You should see your Philips Hue devices. In our example here we had two devices configured in Philips Hue named Driveway and Hot Tub Lights.
11. You can now control these devices from within Google Home by using the App as shown below or by simply saying “Hey Google Turn on the Driveway Light“. You can also set the light level by saying “Hey Google turn Driveway light to 50 percent” and turn off the light by saying “Hey Google Turn off the Driveway light“.
Google Home Rooms
As you can from the above example when the devices were added to Google Home they were added as separate Rooms. This may be what you want but in many cases you want these new devices to placed in an existing or even new rooms. This can be done by changing the room through the Device settings.
To change your devices room:
1. Open the device screen by taping on it.
2. In the top right select the Settings icon to open the Device Settings screen.
3. You can see in our example the Hot Tub light is shown in a room called Hot tub which was created during the linking process. Tap/click on the Room link/title. A new screen will appear allowing you to select an existing room or to create a new one.
4. Choose or create a new room then hit the Save button. In our example we chose Living Room as the new room for the Hot tub light
5. Return to your Home screen to see that your device/light has changed rooms to Living Room.
In this article we showed you how to link Philips Hue to Google Home. We would love to hear what you have to say about this article so please leave a comment below. If you have any questions or need help you can post your question using the Ask Phil or the Community forums. If we don’t know the answer we will help find it.