As we move forward in the smart-home world, numerous products are becoming available and are adopting multiple platforms which creates competition. This is great news for us everyday consumers hoping to lower the barrier of entry in the the once thought of as “luxury living.” It also pushes the technology to become more secure, more feature rich, and more stable. With that being said, one company has designed a product that I have observed for nearly seven months now with absolutely zero flaws. That company is Lutron and the product is the Caseta line.
At first glance, I hesitated to add this product to my smart home. The reason was that the products require their own “Hub” which was something that I feel would add another layer for malfunction opportunities. Common sense says that more channels of communication between products and controllers would create more chances of simple errors. After reading much into the product, I decided to give it a shot anyway, and I am sure glad I did.
Lutron Caseta uses its own communication protocol they call “Clear Connect Wireless,” and whoever designed it should be awarded the symbolic “Smart Key to the World.” In roughly seven months of use, through wifi restarts, power outages, OS updates, and normal wear and tear, I have not had to reset the “Clear Connect Hub” once. Furthermore, triggering each switch via HomeKit, Alexa, Lutron’s Application, or manually on the switch or remote switch has not failed me one time. It’s responsive, intuitive and very well integrated.
-3-way, 4-way or more-way installation options (without buying expensive hardware or another whole switch) more on this a bit later.
-Integrations with Google Home, Alexa, HomeKit, SmartThings, and much more.
-A full comprehensive line that offers in-wall dimmers, in-wall switches, plug in lamp dimmers, and remotes. As well as a full line of accessories that offer, pico remote wall mounts, remote pedestals, visor clips (for your car), and in-wall mounting bracket for remote. Lutron also offers Serena, remote controllable window shades that can be integrated with Caseta control.
-The Application offers the ability to create scenes, as well as incorporate and adopt control of other devices like Nest Thermostats. It also offers a “Smart Away” mode that uses your location to know when you are away. With this knowledge Caseta can randomly control lights and window coverings helping to deter break-ins by creating the illusion that someone is home.
The most important part of the installation procedure is making sure you have the correct hardware and tools for the job. This may sound silly, right? I mean, a switch is a switch, right? I rate this installation as Easy/Medium as you will need to do some simple wiring. Always make sure you cut the power in your breaker box before working with wiring. Using the simple installation guides that Lutron provides with the product or on their website, I feel confident that most people can do this on their own. However, if you are concerned about it, call a local electrician, and he or she can have these installed for you in a snap.
Questions to ask yourself
Here are the things that you will need to know before selecting the correct product for your application.
- What lights do you want to control.
- How many switches operate the lights that you want to control. (single pole, 3-way, 4-way)
- What type of bulbs are you using? (CFL, LED, Incandescent)
- Do you want to be able to dim your lights or just control on/off?
Below is a chart showing estimated cost to set up one light in single gang set-up situations. It should be noted that additional costs will apply for multiple gang installations. If you need to swap out other switches in the box, use a decora style (Square Switch) cover or a specialized switch cover. It should also be noted that Lutron sells packages that can save you money on your initial set up. You can check these and more out at Casétawireless.com.
Below are imbedded videos directly from Luton that will aid you in your installation process.
In closing, Lutron Caseta makes the perfect smart-home switch to add to your home. In my opinion, it is the most affordable, user-friendly, secure, and reliable option on the market today. This alone makes it a standout. If you add in its vast integrations and customer support, I would say Lutron Caseta products are the first products you should look at to start or grow your own smart-home. Officially today (and I don’t know why it me took so long), Lutron Caseta is being added to the “Average Joe Certified Products.” Yeah, its that good!