home automation,Electrician - Structured Media Panels
Written by Larry Cook

Planning the Wiring for Your Smart Home – Part 1

The technology for home automation has vastly grown more sophisticated the past few years, making their installation more complex. Homeowners may not know that some electricians can provide this service. A 2016 study of the industry found that electrical contractors are the primary installers of home technology, doing 72% of the work.


The most up-to-date smart homes have integrated lighting, audio and video, entry, security, and climate control systems so that they are automated and can be remotely controlled. As costs have decreased, smart home technologies have become much more accessible to homeowners. It is only recently that many remote devices have become more affordable due to competition. Nowadays the installation of smart home devices can be accomplished without drastically raising the overall cost of wiring.

For example, an interface using tablets or smartphones with a very good touch screen should cost under $1,000, and system wiring using Cat5e will add up to $500. The trend during home construction and remodeling among contractors is to install cabling that anticipates future expansion, providing more options and cost savings to homeowners as smart home device and broadband usage rapidly grows. This makes it more critical for homeowners to consult and work with an electrical services company that is knowledgeable regarding both home automation and structured cabling.


The smart home automation standard features an interface that controls audio and video, climate settings, data, lighting, and telephony, along with landline phones and cable wiring.

Complex smart systems are equipped with smart switches, which include a user interface with a central control processor. Utilizing one keypad located at the front entrance or within the master bedroom or a tablet or smartphone, residents can control the entire home’s air conditioning, lights, entertainment system, and other systems.

Smart home automation can also feature wireless control systems. However, they may be affected by noise interference from audio and visual equipment and other electronic devices.

Most experts recommend a plan that considers future expansion during construction or remodeling. A conduit wire chase running from the basement all the way to the attic and extra conduits that are accessible via drilling a few holes are suggested to cover additional needs. This will eliminate having to tear down walls to install equipment years later.

Part 2 will cover Planning with an Electrician and Differences from Traditional Wiring.

Electrical Peace of Mind

Providing professional electricians since 1988 in Maryland, Cook Electric is the company you can rely on for all your electrical service needs, including:

  • Commercial & Residential Electrical Installations
  • Marina & Residential Pier Wiring
  • Electrical Service & Repair
  • Specialty Electrical Services

For knowledgeable, fair, honest, reliable, and conscientious service, call Cook Electric today at (410) 266-9040. They will be very glad to help you.