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Automatic Pet Feeder

Do you ever find yourself forgetting to feed your pets? Do you find it hard to wake up early in the morning to ensure that your pets have the food they need? All these problems can be easily overcome with StevenDeDomenico’s automatic dog feeder.

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The dog feeder uses a mechanical system of servos and stepper motors to dispense regular food, or treats at times set by the user. A real time clock ensures the the Arduino powering the project keeps track of the time, and a TFT LCD is used to display a menu for the dog owner to set the feeding times. This is a really fantastic project that highlights the versatility of Arduino. Incase these features were not enough, you can also control feeding remotely from your mobile phone, and use the inbuilt security camera to check that the dispenser is working properly! Although this is quite a complicated project with the many systems involved, Steven’s instructions are sure to give you some inspiration and help get you started.

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From a home automation perspective, once set up, this project is sure to remove a daily chore! Indeed, you could even go on holidays without having to worry about organising someone to look after your dog. Check out the video below to see the feeder in action:

Want to learn more about awesome automation hacks like this? Subscribing to SuperHouse Automation on YouTube is the best place to start!

Thinking about making your own automatic pet feeder? Have a project you would like us to feature in this blog? The team at SuperHouse Automation would love to know! Tell us about it in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.   

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Create a Tweeting Toothbrush with Arduino

Struggle to get your kids to brush their teeth? Want to keep better track of your own teeth brushing habits? Check out this innovative project from Ruben Mortier which uses an accelerometer and Arduino to monitor teeth brushing behaviour.

The “Inventive Toothbrush” not only notifies parents via email and twitter when their children have started brushing their teeth, but also displays helpful brushing tips on a screen and plays music to encourage children to brush for longer. This helpful project is sure to be fun to make whilst also solving a common parenting issue! To get started check out the following link.

Subscribe to SuperHouse Automation on YouTube to learn more about creating internet of things devices!

Have an idea of another common household item that could benefit from being connected to the internet? The team at SuperHouse Automation would love to know! Let us know in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Automate Your Chicken Coop with Arduino

Fascinated by the idea of keeping chickens? Hesitant at the thought of having to regularly feed the chickens and get up early to let them out into the yard?  Looking to optimise your existing chicken pen? If you answered yes to any of the previous questions, you are in the right place! Blogger Roger Reed has create an excellent fully automated chicken pen.

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The pen includes features such as fully automated cooling, lighting, food, water, an automated door and even an infrared camera. Not only have these improvements saved Roger a lot of time, they have also increased the number of eggs his chickens “Penny and Henny” have been laying! To get started building your own Arduino chicken coop, check out the comprehensive blog Roger has used to document the project.   

Automating your chicken coop could be a great place to start building up your skills before you start modifying your house. Subscribe to SuperHouse Automation on YouTube to learn more about creating your own home automation system!

Have chickens that could benefit from this project? Inspired by this project? The team at SuperHouse Automation would love to know! Let us know in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Every Smart Home Needs a Smart Trap…

If you have been having trouble with rats or mice, check out this innovative project from The Brothers McKenty. The rat trap cleverly uses a hanging basket which falls when a rat is detected, trapping the rat inside. An infrared sensor detects the presence of a rodent, and an RGB LED and a buzzer provide you with useful trap status feedback. The project is clearly documented and is likely to develop both your electronics skills and your general DIY construction skills, with the trap based on a solidly constructed wooden cage. The addition of Arduino to this rat trap means that it is far more intelligent and effective than any store bought alternatives! To get started on this project check out the following link.  

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Linking this project to an existing home automation system could allow you to track trends concerning rodent behaviour. Hopefully overtime you will be able to see how effective the trap has been!

Want to get started creating your own home automation system? Subscribing to SuperHouse Automation on YouTube is the best place to start!

Do you need to rid your house of rats? Love this project? The team at SuperHouse Automation would love to know! Let us know in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Arduino Tank Level Tracker

Do you ever find yourself wondering exactly how full your water tank is? With this project from Boris Landoni you can create your very own water tank level sensor using Arduino. This is a perfect addition to a smart home, allowing you to track tank level trends, and even potentially automatically switch between tank water and mains water if your tank runs dry. An ultrasonic distance sensor is used to determine how far the water is from the top of the tank, and uses this to calculate the current water level. The output output is displayed on an LCD screen so that you can easily see how full your tank is! Although not specifically detailed in the project, it wouldn’t be hard to feed the water level data into an existing home automation system. The possibilities for a project such as this are really limited to your imagination! To get started on this project check out the following link.   

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Subscribe to SuperHouse Automation on YouTube to learn more about creating internet of things devices!

Do you think this is a useful project? The team at SuperHouse Automation would love to know! Let us know in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Connected Laundry with Arduino

Sick of losing valuable drying time when you forget to take the washing out of the machine? This project allows you to turn your washing machine into an Internet of Things (IoT) device which notifies you via Twitter and sms when the washing is finished. Rather than modifying your washing machine, the project cleverly uses an accelerometer to detect when the washing machine is in use.  The project can be made very cheaply from commonly available parts and could be easily finished in a few hours.

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Completing this project will teach you a lot about building internet connected devices and could end up saving you a lot of time. To get started check out the instructable from MakerBee.

If you are looking for a accelerometer to complete this project, SuperHouse Automation recomends the Freetronics 3-Axis Accelerometer Module. The module has independent X,Y and Z axis outputs ready to connect directly into an Arduino. To find out more and to order check out the product page.

Subscribe to SuperHouse Automation on YouTube to learn more about creating internet of things devices!

Considering optimizing your washing machine? The team at SuperHouse Automation would love to hear how your project goes! Let us know in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Add Keyless Entry to Your Home or Office with RFID

Being able to open and unlock a door with the quick touch of an RFID tag adds a new dimension to managing access to your home or office. Gone are the days of fumbling in the dark trying to find the right key for the particular door you are trying to open, or having to keep track of all the different sets of keys you have had cut. With an RFID enabled electronic door you can open your door with a simple “tap”, easily and securely manage who has access and even keep a log of who has opened the door. If you are keen to get started check out our video about how we added RFID to the door of our office:  

Although this project sounds difficult, with many electronic door locks commercially available it is really a simple matter of configuring the RFID reader to trigger the electronic lock. Indeed, the RFID Door Lock Shield from Freetronics provides a fantastic and simple interface between the RFID reader, your Arduino Compatible board and the electronic lock. For more information visit the RFID Door Lock Shield page.

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Want to get started creating your own home automation system? Subscribing to SuperHouse Automation on YouTube is the best place to start!  Inspired to add an RFID door to your home or office? The team at SuperHouse Automation would love to know! Let us know in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Monitor Your Rubbish Usage with the Arduino Smart Bin

Sick of your rubbish bin overflowing? Sick of never remembering to take out your bins? Check out this Arduino powered smart rubbish bin! The project allows you turn your bin into an internet of things (IoT) device so that you can keep track of how full your bin is, and even schedule reminders to take your bin out. The bin uses an IR distance sensor to sense the height from the top of the bin to the current rubbish level. This information is then sent to an Arduino which makes a comparison between the current distance and the height of the bin to work out the rubbish level and update a web app (or push data to an existing home automation system).

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You can even configure your smart bin to tweet or email you when the bin reaches capacity! This would be a perfect project to incorporate into an existing smart home. Love the idea of a smart trash can and can’t wait to get started? check out the Instructable from jsigmier to get started.

Want to get started automating your own home? Subscribing to SuperHouse Automation on YouTube is the best place to start!

Started on your own home automation project? Inspired by this project? The team at SuperHouse Automation would love to know! Let us know in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.