„New smart Home“ - System to go for?

Hi all,
I have some parts in my house where I get some data via app. I will soon update my heating and with that I want some parts to be “smart”. I plan to uses OH raspberryPi Server but it is not a must.
The facts about my devices so far:

  • photovoltaic System with a SolarEdge SE9k inverter (The ZigBee module is not yet installed)
  • Netatmo station
  • fritzBox Router
  • Weishaupt Heat-Pump

Goal: in a first step I want to increase my power consumption from the photovoltaic system. Thus, some logic shall be implemented like
If production > consumption

  • switch on heat-pump
  • switch on power plugs

  • Next I want my radiators to follow some logic like schedules and so on. Probably I want to add window sensors to additionally control the radiator.
    Later I want to measure rain water reservoirs and use the information for watering the garden.

This is where I am at the moment. I thought my next step would be a controller for a smart home system and use it with the proprietary apps. Then moving to OH to integrate more and more. I think about using the AVM fritzBox system as basis, but I do not have much experience with the system.
Homematic could be an alternative as I see it.

Do you guys have any recommendations? Or anything I am thinking completely wrong?



I can only really talk about the Velbus hardware, which is a fully wired solution that is well supported in openHAB2.
(All the documentation is publicly available, should you wish to dive deeply into the protocol)

There are 4~20ma depth gauges that work with the Velbus VMB4AN, which can be used in your rain tank.
I’ve got one on test here and it’s working well.

As for room Thermostats and window sensing, that’s fairly easy to accomplish in Velbus too.

A channel of a VMB7IN for the window sensors, (with an action that forces the room Thermostat into Safe mode when the window is open, thus turning off the heating and / or cooling for that zone.)

A channel of a Velbus relay to open the radiator / UFH value etc

And lastly a room thermostat to suit your design needs.

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That is a damn complex task to take on and as the beginner you are, you mustn’t start with a tough goal like that. If you applied professional analysis and project management, this part would actually become the LAST in a long list of tasks.
While I understand that’s appealing, it’s a bad idea to start with that in mind. We have seen people fail on lesser challenges.

You need to get the basics right FIRST, that is:

  1. install an openHAB server, get it working to control basic stuff
  2. get familiar with openHAB configuration and rules programming
  3. choose control technology for your devices.
  4. evaluate a proper control logic
    This is even more important and more challenging than it seems to be at first sight.
    How to control your energy flow will depend on how well you can control your consumer devices.
    Are there readings and control mechanisms for your inverter, heatpump, other HVAC systems and major consumers like the washing machine and e-car ? How do they work ?
    Are there bindings for your devices and what sort of data and control do they provide ?
    Where do you measure consumption ? How do you do that, what sort of additional devices do you need for that ? What data to record ?

Also note that you should create a comprehensive picture FIRST of where your smart home needs to evolve to. Select your power plugs, window sensors, thermostats etc. only in concert with an overall smart home concept, you won’t want to end up having various actuators in different technologies like WiFi, ZWave and ZigBee and proprietary stuff.
Read more in the forum how others approach this before you decide on specific technology
Just one major hint: avoid proprietary technology whereever possible. It’s ok to integrate if devices exist already in your home but they’re always a bad idea to buy. While that may not be obvious to a starter like yourself, you’ll get to discover the value in this hint in the long run.
(translates into: no HomeMatic and no AVM devices).
Start with openHABian on a Raspi 4/2GB and then take your time to read up way more on the forum.