Q: What are the major benefits available from a lighting control system?
Aesthetics, convenience, security: These are the major benefits available from a lighting control system. While it's possible for a system to provide all three, it's always best to focus first on which benefit is most important to your family. For example, if you collect art, are passionate about interior design or want to show off your home's unique architecture, you'll want your lighting control system to be designed in a way that accentuates the aesthetic qualities of your home. In this case, a lighting designer should be brought into the project to select the appropriate fixtures, arrange and aim the lights and specify the best intensity levels to achieve the effects you desire. A home systems installer can then set up several lighting scenes that can be enacted from a remote, a keypad or some other type of control device.
A nighttime welcome scene, for instance, could uplight the maples in your front lawn, wash soft lighting across the beautiful stone facade and light a pathway from the driveway to the front door. When your guests have arrived, you could switch to a cocktail party scene to keep the general lighting in your living room soft but play up the artwork on the walls.
A lighting control system can add an extra layer of protection to your home. For example, when smoke has been detected, a lighting control system can light a pathway from the bedrooms to the nearest exit. Illuminated pathways can also provide peace of mind when you return home after an evening out or when your kids cry out in the middle of the night.
Another effective way to use lighting as a security tool is by having the lights flash or simultaneously activate when there's trouble. A popular setup is to have a panic button placed by your bedside. Should you hear something strange, just hit the button to instantly light up the backyard and every room on the first floor. Integrating the lights with a security system is a good idea, too. When the security system detects a break-in, it could flash every light to scare away the intruder or to help the police find your home quickly.