I’ve just bought a Gardena smart control system to automate my water irrigation.
I chose this, because OH has a binding for it. Is it a bad thing that openHAB decides what I buy?
And I come to the same conclusion I had in the past with my Bosch lawn mover. Will I use the (smart?) schemes of the manufacturers?
How do you guys do/see it?
Just go the easy way, and rely on the manufacturers?
Guess (hope?) they put a lot of things in scope we don’t think about?
At least, they’re paid for it, no?
Things like temperature, timings, humidity, plant grows, forecasts…
Put (more) intelligence in it with OH?
How do you guys start with this?
Look around on the internet what/how/…?
Start with block diagrams (I really need start doing this to keep an overview)?
In general I usually skip the features of the devices which has an official app (I mean almost every has one, but I usually change their firmware like Sonoff switches - so it loses it’s original app). So I don’t really use them I rely on openHAB.
Mainly because openHAB has all of my devices, so I can build better rules for it.
I can’t really think of anything useful for irrigation, but I’m sure you can find some example for this, like do something differently with irrigation when you are away or home (your irrigation system usually don’t know when you are home, but openHAB does).
Only if you cannot spend the time but that’s apparently not the case.
First, manufacturers first and foremost are manufacturers and not garden experts although their marketing wants to make you believe.
Second, their settings are - if at all - optimized for an abstract, average instance of a “garden” because they don’t know the gardens of those to buy their products.
As always, there’s no hidden magic. It’ll only work out if you invest time and dedication. If you have a brown thumb, no product will turn it green.
In short: #2
As the answer would be with almost any other housing related technology, too (even HVAC stuff).
I tend to not integrate everything into OH, even when it’s possible. I run Plex, have a Rachio, figured out how to interact with Roku, have Wyze cameras, etc. With the exception of Wyze, all of them could be integrated with OH. But I don’t have a use case so I’ve not done so. I’ve only recently integrated Chromecast so I get an alert when my kid starts streaming stuff on the Nest Hub. My new drier even has wifi and an API (and I think even a binding) but I’ve not and probably never will connect it to anything.
So I tend to just rely on the manufacturers unless/until I need it to work with other technologies instead of stand alone. Take the Rachio for example, which controls my irrigation. There is a binding in OH for it but I’ve yet to come up with a reason to integrate it. I can already control it by voice from Google Assistant. I get alerts from it. It is weather aware and is finely tuned to the type of plants and the output of the sprinkler heads/area covered. It does everything I need it to do on it’s own. I don’t gain anything by having it integrated with OH, so I haven’t done so.
I’m not one of those users who tries to make OH do everything. If it works just fine stand alone, I let it be stand alone.
I think there are two (maybe three) main reasons for integration into openHAB
- Just because it’s possible
- your usecase cannot be handled by the supplier app
- you can manage it cheaper (but spent more time) with openHAB
Sometimes it’s something between
In my case I use some mi flora moisture sensors for the Gardena system but I could also buy another few sets of sensors/contollers from Gardena…
But I also have an option not to activate the sprinkler system if somebody is at home and in the garden (garden door open). Same for the mower, at the beginning the mower was only active if somebody was at home.
Not sure which feature I really need, there is always the kid in me loving to play…
Quick word of warning about the Gardena - has a small amount of early frost last year, and the Gardena watering device broke in such a way as to send water shooting everywhere. Fortunately caught it before it caused any problems…
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