Smart Security Can Also Boost Efficiency

Let your clients know that new IOT-enabled security systems can double as energy watchdogs.
Sep 22, 2016 11:00 AM ET

These days, security systems can do more than just signal when an intruder enters a building. Today’s security systems can be integrated into other home systems to provide energy savings.

“When thinking about using an alarm system, we often think about the system only being used for burglar alarm capabilities,” says Tom Mechler, applications design manager for Bosch. “However, while these systems are monitoring doors or windows, why not use their capabilities for other things?” 

By integrating with a smart home system, homeowners also can use the security system’s ability to monitor open doors and movement to optimize other home systems, such as HVAC and lighting. For example, because the security system monitors movement in the home, a homeowner can program their smart home system to turn a light off 15 minutes after a person leaves a room. Or, if the home includes zone heating or cooling, the temperature can be adjusted based on whether a person is in a room or not.  

“Smart home systems are really expanding, especially as cost begins to decrease and ease increases,” Mechler says. “There’s no reason the alarm system can’t signal the smart home system through normal integration.”

In addition, a security system can be used to inform homeowners about doors and windows that are left open—and for how long. Bosch took this idea a step further and provides security system technology that alerts a home or business owner when a door has been opened for a prolonged period of time. As a security feature, it alerts homeowners if there’s a security vulnerability. As an energy saver, it prevents unnecessary heating or cooling loss and high energy bills. 

Bosch B and G Series security systems also integrate with the company’s surveillance cameras, which can email a video snapshot to the user when security events occur. That way, an intruder can be identified. In addition, Bosch’s video analytics capabilities can alert a business or homeowner when someone leaves a room or enters an area in which they may not be permitted, or whether too many people are in a building. 

Bosch security systems also can monitor whether window glass is broken, detect seismic activity and alert those inside the building to high carbon monoxide levels. 

To take these security and energy saving features a step further, Bosch offers a Z-Wave Home Control Gateway that integrates with its B and G Series security systems. Users can connect to Z-Wave devices from their wireless devices to control and automate lighting, heating and cooling. They can lock doors, turn on the security system, turn off lights, adjust the thermostat, and turn sprinklers on or off from their mobile device—whether they are inside the home or running errands around town. If a door is unknowingly left unlocked, the control panel will send the owner an email or text message alerting them to the situation.

Security systems like those offered by Bosch can help homeowners ensure their safety and save on energy costs inside the home. They can help homeowners develop more energy-efficient practices and avoid wasting energy—and spending too much on energy bills.