Want a new kind of home improvement project that leverages technology instead of nails and hammers? Here are eight smart home improvements that leverage your Raspberry Pi and Arduino skills.
1) Add Facial Recognition To Your Smart Home With Raspberry Pi
Why Take On This Project: Facial recognition is an up and coming security technology, yet few people understand its power or limitations. This project will show you just how facial recognition works.
Key hardware includes:
Note that this project is more relevant for security rather than convenience. It is possible to circumvent this device’s security by holding up a photo of an authorized user.
For more detailed directions on this project, please read our full guide: DIY Facial Recognition With Raspberry Pi.
2) Create A “Doggy Door” For Your Home With RFID
Your dog probably likes to come and go from your home. Instead of using a traditional doggy door, you can create something more cost-effective to avoid losing heat in winter and cooling in summer. Use RFID technology to control your home’s doggy door.
The hardware you need includes:
Note that this project involves a Python script, so you may need to learn your way around Python as well.
When you complete this project, your pet will have a more convenient lifestyle, and you will have a whole new level of technology skills.
For a detailed guide to this project, including photos and coding details, read our post: How to integrate RFID module with Raspberry Pi.
3) Control Your Raspberry Pi Devices With Siri Voice Commands
Do you like using Siri to issue voice commands? It’s one of the most convenient ways to control your smart home. We have some good news! Apple’s hardware and software no longer limit you. You can use your Raspberry Pi to gain more control over your home with this DIY project.
The hardware components needed for this project include:
Through a combination of a Python script and Raspberry Pi, you can control LED lights by voice command!
For detailed directions, open our guide, “How to Add Siri Control to Your Raspberry Pi Project.”
4) Secure Your Home With Lasers!
If you’ve ever seen laser-based security in a movie, you’ve probably wondered about the technology. We have good news for you! You don’t need expensive technology to use lasers in your home. With your Arduino technology skills, you can bring laser-powered security to your home.
Your hardware shopping list to build your DIY laser tripwire:
With this device, you can detect if a door opens or if somebody walks through a room.
For detailed guidance on how to build this system, read our guide: “How To MacGyver A Laser Tripwire Using Arduino.”
5) Your Do-It-Yourself Wireless Light Switch
You can buy an off-the-shelf device to control your lights in your smart home. However, what if you have existing lights that you want to control wirelessly? A DIY wireless light switch is an excellent way to make your home smarter.
To build this device, you will need a few hardware components. You can find the full list of hardware components in our step by step guide: Servo Motor Controlled Wireless Light Switch. You might have some components like an Arduino UNO R3 and jumper cables already on hand if you have created other Arduino projects in the past.
Our guide suggests using batteries as the power supply. That is an excellent way to get started as a beginner. If you have advanced skills, consider using power modules to improve your energy efficiency.
6) Monitor Your Garden Remotely!
Gardeners know that careful monitoring of their plants matters. Leave your garden unattended for too long, and you will face weeds and other pests. That’s why you should create a smart garden system. With this DIY project, you can measure barometric pressure, light levels and other factors in your smart garden.
To build this smart garden system, you will need a few different hardware components. Some like resistors, servo motors, and LEDs, you might already have on hand from previous projects. Others like a sensor evaluation kit are more specialized and you will need to pick up for this project.
You can find more detailed step-by-step instructions – including photos – in our how-to guide here: Smart Garden System using Arduino Create + ROHM Sensor Evaluation Kit.
7) Take Your Home Security System To The Next Level
Many homes have a basic alarm system. Some even have a company that provides remote monitoring. What if that isn’t quite enough for you? Welcome to your next DIY home security tech project using Arduino.
As we show in our step-by-step guide DIY Arduino Home Security System using ROHM Sensor Kit, this project leverages a variety of hardware. The vital component is the sensor kit. This component gives your security system new capabilities like detecting heat and pressure. That means intruders will find it much more difficult to sneak past your sensors.
If you follow through with Part 2 of the guide, you will be able to control this device via the Internet!
8) How To Create A Do-It-Yourself Home Media Server
A powerful entertainment system is a great way to bring more fun to your household. Instead of relying on streaming services, DVDs and the like, develop your own media server. This device will give you the flexibility to enjoy a variety of media files like A and B at home.
To build your media server, your hardware shopping list will include:
You can play almost every kind of media file, including MP4 (video) and MP3 (audio) with the VLC Media Player.
What’s Next With Your Smart Home?
You have two choices when it comes to your smart home technology. You can buy smart home devices off the shelf, which can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars, or you can build your own devices and develop amazing technology skills in the process. The choice is yours!