Green Technology
Energy Monitoring Goes Primetime for ‘Extreme Makeover’
Extreme Makeover: Home Edition family gets home control, energy management system.
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January 27, 2010 by Steven Castle

An energy monitoring system from control company Control4 was featured on the popular TV show, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, this past Sunday. A Buffalo, N.Y., home featured on the show has a whole home control, energy management and entertainment solution by Control4 and Panasonic, and installed by integrator Shawn Lemay and his Buffalo-based firm Sound & Theater. Lemay and team integrated major subsystems in the home such as lighting, HVAC and security to provide a safe and energy efficient dwelling.

The homeowner, Delores Powell, had purchased her home in 2002 without knowledge that it was on the city’s demolition list. After many years of renovations, the home was still unlivable and in desperate need of repair to make it safe, secure and energy efficient.

“Our goal for this project was to install a solution that gave the family peace of mind when it came to the security and overall energy consumption of their home,” said Shawn Lemay, president of Sound & Theater.

Control4 provided the overall home control, energy management and entertainment solution for the project. In the home, the Control4 O/S consolidated major subsystems such as lighting and security into a single whole home automation platform.

The project features:

  • Four Panasonic model BB-HCM735 splash-resistant outdoor IP network cameras providing high-resolution imagery of the exterior of the home. LED lights give difficult-to-see areas better visibility and preprogrammed commands allow the security functions to interrupt entertainment when a doorbell rings or a sensor detects unusual movement outside.
  • A full energy management solution using Control4 and Peak Software, which allows the family to monitor their real-time energy usage though graphs on every user interface in the home including their TVs and touchpanels. Additionally, the home was outfitted with a solar panel system, and energy generated from the panels is calculated through Control4 and then given back to the grid if it outweighs the energy consumed. This results in significant cost savings for the Powell family.
  • Distributed music, movies and TV through a centralized equipment rack in the basement that includes a Sony 400 Disc Blu-Ray changer. Access to all entertainment equipment is via the single, user-friendly Control4 interface at televisions or touchscreens throughout the home, making home entertainment simple and streamlined.


To view the full episode (originally aired Sunday, January 24, 2010), click here

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Steven Castle - Contributing Writer
Steven Castle is Electronic House's managing editor. he has been writing about consumer electronics, homes and energy efficiency topics for two decades. He is also the co-founder of GreenTech Advocates.

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