Using a smart switch has lots of advantages: convenience, works with voice commands, increases home security, helps lower electricity, automates multiple everyday tasks to make life easier, and easy to use. The majority of smart light switches are designed to replace traditional light switches. However, you may need to determine if your existing switch uses a neutral wire, or is connected to another switch, so you know to purchase a compatible smart light switch.

Unlike most smart home devices, which merely require you to plug them into an outlet, installing a smart switch involves replacing a current in-wall switch. Since few, if any, light-control products include professional installation as part of the package, you will need a basic understanding of electrical work, which includes turning off the circuit breaker. Smart switches are often bulkier than their traditional counterparts, however; so if they don't fit in the electrical box properly, you may need to get a new box, which is probably a job for an electrician. Similarly, some older homes don't have the right wiring, so an electrician is a good idea here, too. 

Understanding Different Types of Smart Electrical Outlets and Switches

The main difference between smart switches is the type of connection used to regulate them. All smart switches rely on radio transmitters for internal communication and network connections. Nevertheless, the "smart" features of switches enable them to communicate with each other, which can be managed through a variety of broadcast frequencies and protocols. Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Zigbee, and Z-Wave are the three most popular forms of connectivity for smart switches. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth smart switches are usually the easiest to install, as they do not require a smart home hub. As a result, they can quickly connect to your existing home network. Smart switches controlled by Zigbee and Z-wave communication must be connected to a smart home hub. The main advantage of this solution is that the switch does not consume Wi-Fi network bandwidth. If you want to install multiple smart switches in your home or have limited Internet data plans, then this feature may be essential.

Buying Smart Electrical Outlets and Switches to Consider

Just like a smart plug, you need a smart device to run the applications for a given smart switch. Unlike a smart plug, the installation of a smart switch requires more effort. You need to replace a non-smart switch by physically connecting the smart switch to your home's electrical grid. For those with experience in DIY home projects, this may not be much of a problem. If you are uncomfortable doing this work yourself, you can hire a professional electrician to do it for you. For professionals, this type of work is usually very quick and easy, so it should not be too expensive for you. The convenience of a smart switch will make the installation cost worth it.

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