(Please help) need an elderly alarm

Hi everyone I’m hoping you can help

An elderly family member is now having falls and having a generally bad time due health decline we are all worried

We have been thinking about adding an alarm system too there house something with a wearable button and a siren but these systems are £100+ and you have pay monthly fees after like 50p a day

Do you think openhab can do this for less

When the button pressed an alarm sounds in there house and sends text email ect too other family members who live other places

Is this a good problem for openhab to solve? What hardware would you use?

My setup ideas
Controller: RPI (small & cheap)
SIREN: HOME mini (small & semi portable) (only used for chromecast audio playback)
Button: flic button or amazon dash (small & cheap & portable)

This system needs to be extremely reliable

Any better recommendations lower price better hardware ect

My family member does not have openhab running it would have to be a completely new setup and this would be the only use for there system so no zwave ect they will never add smart lights or sockets ect so I would have to justify the price

I would try the Fibaro Button (FB01 - red version) and then use a rule to execute whatever you want (email, sound, etc)

Thanks for your reply dim I appreciate your help

The button needs to be wearable or easily modified to be wearable z-wave isn’t realy an option as there are no plans for adding more zwave in the future so the cost of a zwave controller is slight not worth it wifi or Bluetooth would be alot better

Yes that’s my thought I think I have got the rule part covered

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But here is there thing. Except for wired solutions, zwave is the most reliable. You have to decide what is more important to you, reliability or cost. The two usually lead in opposite directions.

But the first thing to decide is exactly what use cases you want to cover. If it is just a way to alert you on a fall, an Amazon Dash button may be sufficient. If you want to get an alert when there hasn’t been any movement after a time you need to look into motion sensors/multisensors or cameras with motion detection in the home. It doesn’t sound like you have to deal with memory issues so getting alerts when the stove is left on May be as lower priority, though smoke/CO alarms that can send you alerts could be important.

You also need to take into consideration range. WiFi will have the best range by itself, probably covering there full home. Zwave has impressive range and even better when you have a good message setup but without a mesh it isn’t going to necessarily convert the whole house. BT will have the worst range, maybe covering one or two rooms.

Once you iterate over the set of use cases you will be in a better position to choose a technology(s) to assist. I don’t know if you will get a response (there is some bad blood caused by the way the Nest 2.x binding was created so he has dropped out of participating in oh) but you can try to send a pm to watou. He set up OH to monitor his parents remotely. You can search on his postings as well and get some ideas.

What I do know about his setup is he used the MQTT EventBus to link the remote OH to his home OH.

Thanks for the detailed reply

the main purpose of the system would be for falls the person in question does not live alone she lives with husband

so on button press sound an alarm in the house to alert her husband if he in bath or otherwise busy sleeping ect that assistance is needed and after that send emails if she has not received a response say he is out

no motion detection needed at the moment i have noticed you used the dash buttons in the past are they reliable

I wanted to use them as garage door remotes. They were reliable enough but not responsive enough for that use. It took them just long enough to go through the WiFi negotiation process that the user starts to think that it didn’t work and press it again. That wouldn’t be a problem for something like this but it causes havoc with a garage door opener.

I don’t use them for anything at the moment. The garage doors were the only thing I needed to control but I’ve since got new openers with buttons that actually work and they work reliably when commanded from the phone (oh app and Tasker) so their user case went away. Everything else in the house is fully automated so no need for remotes.

Thats what i read too you replaced the buttons for a complete solution for your garage door with a sensor that stops it from closing if something is there

The way the buttons are added to OH is not official what do you think the chances of them patching and stopping this from working? do you know of any buttons that are similar ?

Zero. The buttons are WiFi and the detection works by sniffing for the packets the buttons must send out to join your network to send the message on to Amazon. The only way they can change this is to produce different hardware. Even if Amazon shuts down their servers, the Dash button will still be detectable in your lan.

They may make it so new Dash buttons no longer work in this way somehow but that can only affect new buttons, not old ones.

I see all sorts on Kickstarter and I’ll Indigogo and the like. I think one of the more successful ones is Flick. I don’t have a use case for them personally so I’ve not kept up. Search for “iot button” and I’m sure you will find a bunch of options.

Not so much a complete complete solution as replacing the whole opener. In the US it is illegal to sell a new garage door opener that does not have obsticle sensors and pressure sensors. Consequently I could not find a replacement remote for the opener I had which was the party that didn’t work. So I bought a new opener but it is still a dumb opener so I still have my DIY RPi relay system connected to it so I can control it from OH.

I will say that at the time, I also set up some Zwave minimotes and they worked a lot better than the dash buttons in terms of range (I had parts of the mesh network much closer to the drive way than my AP) and with a lot better response time.

But for now I just talk to my phone and my wife uses the remote it came with.

I use a Keychain remote paired to a Liftmaster controller connected to a Wemos D1 mini pro.
Pressing the button on the remote relays to the 850LM controller, then it connects a gpio pin to ground on the Wemos. The Wemos then sends a mqtt message to openhab. Openhab can have different rules for each button. Examples like: Turn on lights, unlock a door, and push a message using prowl.