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Protect Your Family with the Best Home Automation System…SmartThings

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by Jeff Patterson in Interior DIY Projects
The Best Home Automation System

I love my family.

They are everything to me.

And: I’d do anything to keep them safe.

If you feel the same way, then you’ll love today’s tutorial.

I personally tested Samsung’s SmartThings home automation to see if it can make our house safer.

What I found out is pretty cool…

Why I LOVE Samsung’s SmartThings Home Automation

You can monitor your home from your smartphone!!

Why’s this cool?

You can get notifications on your phone if

  • someone enters your home
  • someone triggers a motion sensor
  • there’s a water leak…and more

I like this because we’re not home all the time.

Sound familiar?

It makes me feel more secure about our biggest asset (our home!!).

PLUS: I can tell when my daughters get home from school or a friend’s house.

Meg and Kate

How does this work?

With the Samsung SmartThings App and Home Monitoring Kit (These Amazon links help support HRT).

Home Monitoring Kit

Why should you care?

Most home security systems charge a monthly fee.

Which totally sucks.

I already get nickeled and dimed by our cell phone company.

But SmartThings doesn’t have a monthly plan.

You buy the system and it works via your WIFI and smartphone.

WIN WIN for the little guy (you and me).

How does the SmartThings work?


How I Use SmartThings in Our House

When we go away I like pretending we’re still at home.

One way I do that is with a smart Outlet.

Smart Outlet

Simply plug it into a standard outlet.

Then any light you plug into the smart Outlet can be controlled on your smartphone

Jeff and Smart Outlet

Controlling lights with motion sensors is really awesome.

We hardwired a motion sensor light switch a few years back…it’s in our laundry room.

Now, I expect all lights to automatically turn on when I enter a room.

You can avoid the hardwiring part by using the SmartThings Motion Sensor.

Motion Sensor

Simply pair it with a light that’s plugged into a smart Outlet.

Now your lights can turn on when you enter the room.

Doesn’t get an easier.

BUT my favorite SmartThings invention is the Multipurpose Sensor.

They tell you when doors or windows open or close

Multi Purpose Sensor

I strategically use two of these on our sliding glass door and garage man door.

When someone opens and closes these doors I instantly get notifications on my smartphone.

This comes in handy when I’m running late on a school day.

The Multipurpose sensor lets me know my daughters got into the house safely.

I’m also testing Samsung’s SmartCam HD Pro.

SmartCam HD PRO

The SmartCam works over your WIFI network.

You can use the SmartCam app to setup all sorts of notifications.

AND: watch LIVE video from your smartphone.

Smartphone Security Video


How cool is that, LIVE security video footage on your smartphone?

I love technology.

Check out my video tutorial to see SmartThings in action.

PLUS: I mention a sweet surprise giveaway at the end…I think you’ll love it.


What’s Next

Now I want to hear from you.

What do you think of the SmartThings home automation system?

Let me know in the comments.

I’d love to get your take on it.


Jeff Patterson





P.S. If you’re doing a DIY bathroom remodel in 2018 check out Bathroom Repair Tutor, you won’t be disappointed with the videos and one-on-one support.

P.P.S. Our online store has a ton of supplies for homeowners doing a bathroom remodel. You’ll find wedi shower systems, KBRS shower pans, tiling tools, and more.

  1. Jeff, I love the video. I live 30 miles west of Detroit and home security is key and I have been looking into it. I really glad you did this video because I was looking at other systems. thanks again!!!

  2. David says:

    Looks like a great product. I’ve been considering a system like this. The first sensor I would install would somehow be on the garage door. I’ve turned around to go home to check the garage door way too many times. This way, I would know without having to make a u-turn.

  3. Benita says:

    When I am home, I have the best home monitoring device in the world…my dog. However, when he and I are out and about or visiting elsewhere, I have nothing. I would love to have this. I cannot afford a monthly charge for a service. Thanks for this opportunity.

  4. Jim B says:

    So cool home security has come a long way in a short time

  5. Sanjay patel says:

    Hi Jeff, I like the home monitoring system, as me and my wife both are working n its important for us to monitor our home when kids come back from school, also it saves money monthly I am paying to security company to monitor my home.

  6. Matt Palazola says:

    Hi Jeff, I love the multi purpose sensor for my garage door to protect my tools!

  7. I too am very interested in a modular alarm system that does not require any monthly monitoring fees. This is something that would stay with me wherever I might live. Great product.

  8. Shelby says:

    I love the video. I was thinking of a way to save money for my nonprofit that houses homeless veterans and this sounds like an answered prayer. I currently have a security system through the cable company and HATE the monthly fees. Thanks so much for doing this and all of the other very helpful videos.

  9. Barbara Curtis says:

    We are taking care of my elderly mother who lives hours away. The SmartThings home automation systems sounds perfect for not only increasing her security but also will help us monitor any issues with her heating system.

  10. Mike says:

    We recently bought our first home and one of my priorities is keeping my family safe! I am researching on Home Security Systems but they are expensive. After this video “Smart Thing” is looking like a pretty cool product to get.

  11. Mike Ruf says:

    I have been watching all the smart home technology advance for the last decade. Obviously, the smart home units from 10 years ago were really expensive. I have compared all the various manufacturer’s systems. I really had my reservations about many of them because of the price for various components. I do believe I looked at the Samsung system in a recent search. I trust the Samsung brand because I have had really good luck with their smartphones, tablets, TV’s, our new HE washer and dryer. I built the pedestal they stand on to bring the front loaders up to my level. I need some type of home security and monitoring device. They have just been out of my grasp due to price. When I am away I would like to know all is well (such as my daughter getting home from school). Or if she remembered to close the garage door (because my workshop is in my garage). Heck, sometimes I get to my destination and cannot remember if I closed it myself! Integration is the key in these systems. I could really use this system to ensure my family is safe when I am away or like you said, so you know when doors opened and closed. As long as Samsung continue us to support this model and add additional components at competitive prices, it would be a great way to go. The initial investment for the starter package is always the hardest to stomach. I would love to have piece of mind in this day and age!

  12. simplydab says:

    Great video! I’d actually gift this to my son – he and his wife don’t live in the best section of town, and she’s a stay at home mom of an 8 month old. I know they both would have more peace of mind owning something like this (I would, too!!!).

  13. Nancy Tuttle says:

    As usual, you come up with the coolest, most useful home devices. I know it would be perfect for my home which needs to be monitored when I am away for lengthy periods. I’ve already had a frozen pipes incident, and it was desperately expensive to repair. Recently, the spare set of keys I had for my home went missing and now I worry about “unauthorized” access although I’ve had the locks rekeyed since. This device would greatly ease my stress about what could possibly happen next on the home front.

  14. Steve Tiveron says:

    Hey Jeff great Idea, and I love not having to pay monthly for it. Having a home alarm system is something I’ve thought about for some time.
    Thanks for the video and for the opportunity.

    Steve T

  15. Ryan says:

    I have been looking into the home automation systems for awhile and been waiting for some new item to grab my interest. With a new baby on the way home security is starting to become a priority for me. This system seems to cover everything I’m looking for.

  16. Susan McMillin says:

    My son just bought a new home & he was interested in some kind of security system. This would be ideal. For me I would use it to spy on my cats & the neighbor next door who hates cats!

  17. Ann Fry says:

    This looks like a great product. I particularly like the no monthly fees! We would most definitely use the door alarm on our kitchen door. It’s located to the back of our house and is most hidden. I would also like one on my kitchen window – same reason. I like that you can disarm the system so easily.

  18. Josephine Eckert says:

    Thank you for posting this video. I’m a senior by myself and since my husband died, I am very security conscience about my safety. Whether, I am away from the house or in the house, this system would make me and my cat more safe. Thanks again. Love all your helpful and useful videos.

  19. David Williams says:

    I’d like to monitor conditions in my home workshop, lighting, temp, security, etc. Thanks

  20. Cotton says:

    I paid for a home security system and paid for monitoring on that system for 12 years…Not once did I have an intruder. I’ve recently stopped the monitoring after the company wanted me to upgrade my equipment to the tune of $800. I would love the opportunity to check one of these systems out. Thanks!

  21. Granny says:

    Have been looking for a system like this. It would be a great addition to our home and would love to win.

  22. Fred Mitchell says:

    I own the first generation Hub and am impressed at the versatile open architecture. Just add on to the system as your budget allows. I would love to update to the latest Samsung version. BTW, I am not part of the “computer generation” so If I can do it, so can you!

  23. Vi says:

    I love the smartthings. Out id what’s available it’s the best solution.

  24. Terri Hughes says:

    Great video….the home monitoring system looks so easy to set up. I would use it on my sliding glass door and the front and back doors. Thanks!!!!

  25. dan says:

    Like the wireless portability. CR123A batts.

  26. Bill Brennan says:

    This home automation is cool and I’ve been looking for an interactive product like this for our Galveston, Texas beach house rental. With us being in Austin and away from the house, this product has the sensor, motion detector and video monitoring tied into one smartphone solution that would make the “distance” less burdening and our home security more comforting. How soon can I get this system working at our beach house.

  27. Maria says:

    No fee = Awesome! Would totally use this!

  28. Edwin Peiris says:

    Where can you buy it how much is it

  29. Joan says:

    I have been trying to figure out which is the best monitoring system and there you were. My daughter’s car was stolen and she is a single mom and needs this system.

  30. Dan S says:

    Thanks for the great review. I had a break in several months ago while I was away and have been continuously on the lookout for security systems. There are a lot of cheaper old-fashioned ones with no smartphone connection. There are a lot of newer ones with that capability but I’m hesitant to buy since I’m worried about some losing support. Samsung doesn’t seem like a brand that’s gonna disappear. This might be the way to go .

  31. Joanne De Lisi says:

    Great stuff, Jeff. Have already been using the prior generation on some of this.. Alarm sounds in the house & calls if entry into the house is detected, but with this system one can only HEAR what is happening in the home and talk back to the person in the room. Visual smart phone’s have truly taken the technology to greater levels. Just be careful that your wireless cameras can not be accessed by others.

  32. Hank Wolgast says:

    Great video!!! You really make home security look easy. I live in rural northern Michigan and this would really help me monitor my home while I am away. The only thing of this kind would cost an arm and a leg for their services. I think this is a great product. You have sold me. Thanks

  33. Bob Marshall says:

    This would be fun to play with in addition to adding security to the home. I could see myself constantly monitoring the house while away on vacation or even at work!

  34. KK says:

    Jeff, so glad to see your review of this system! We haven’t known where to start with home automation. This would be perfect for my brother to help keep tabs on his five children! Also, I like the idea of knowing what is going on at our home (temperatures, water leaks, or possible intrusions) when we are out camping!

  35. Susan M says:

    This is so great! I love that I can control the system with my smartphone and that there are no monthly monitoring fees. Samsung products are reliable and my favorite brand. I would use this to get some peace of mind that me and my family can stay safe and secure no matter the time of day or season.

  36. JGillaspie says:

    Thanks so much for a simple way to add Home Security without monthly fees! Love it!

    Thank you

  37. fran says:

    LOVE this idea of no monthly monitoring fee! We would definitely benefit from this – our neighbors are spread out, but we see cars driving down to the end of the street (where we are), turning around and driving back up, hitting the side streets as well – even though the sign at top of the road says NOT AT THRU STREET. We have been toying with the idea of a monitoring system, but have not found one as friendly as this Samsung’s SmartThings.

  38. Patty Jensen says:

    I love the idea of no monthly fees! Hallelujah. I’ve been looking for a monitoring system and this one looks like it would fit my needs perfectly. This one looks to be pretty user friendly – another plus. Thanks for the info!

  39. Jenny C says:

    We moved into a home with a security system, but decided not to pay the high monthly monitoring. The Samsung system looks like it would be a good replacement. I haven’t had a chance to review the specs, but it would be nice if it had a water sensor to detect water heater leaks and other sources of flooding. We appreciate all your videos and tutorials, Jeff!

  40. Rakesh says:


    I’m in market to but smart home hub and devices. I shortlisted three technologies Almond+, insteon and smartthing prior to see your video.. But your video have helped me to make decision to buy smartthing and grow its ecosystem for my home improvement. Thanks

  41. Amy says:

    This is awesome

    1. Thanks Amy, SmartThings is pretty cool

  42. Lori says:

    I think I have found the very thing I need to say bye-bye to ADT! Thanks!

    1. You’ll like it Lori, as long as you have WIFI and a smart phone you should be good to go.

  43. James says:

    I’m not sure if your aware of the reliability issues that PLAGUE smart things, Vera Plus and most of the other consumer home automation systems out there but its worth a look. Check their community pages on samsung and Vera

    If you have under 20 devices you really won’t have that much of an issue, but if you start adding 30, 50 , 60 devices you will really notice the latency issues plus the catastrophic failures every couple of days requiring you physically restart

    Another words, its NOT ready for an alarm system but secondary one at best…

    I plan to have frontpoint as a primary alarm system + Smart things with my entertainment/home maintenance schedule

    Lastly, Smart things has had some downtime recently which leaves EVERYONES hub useless. So now what? I can’t get into my home?

    Sorry, but there’s got to be a better way… Everything needs to be processed locally with an opportunity to have it managed online

  44. KMG says:

    If someone breaks in during the night when you are on vacation and sleeping, how would you be alerted?

    I’m researching to replace my hard wired whole home (condo) system. I got discouraged when I saw a video review on Amazon for a similar unit. The perps stole $30k worth of homeowners items including the security cameras which they saw after much footage was taped:/ The homeowner was asleep away from home so he was not aware of an alert on his phone!?

    I hope you are able to address this for me:)

    Thank you!

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