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Protect The Bikes on Your Roof

Sep 24th, 2017 | By | Category: Blog, Technical Notes

On this week’s episode of The Spokesmen, I mentioned that I have a system to ensure that I don’t drive into my garage with bikes on the roof rack. I made it sound a bit complicated, so I thought I would write this blog post to show you how simple this can be to set-up at your home.

My set-up includes the following items:

The first step in getting this working is to connect the SmartThings Hub to your home network, install the Multipurpose Sensor on your garage door, and connect the sensor to the hub using the free SmartThings app. I won’t go into details on how to connect the sensor to the hub, since the SmartThings team have done a great job of making this super easy.

The SmartThings multipurpose sensor is able to monitor the angle of tilt of the sensor itself, so I do not use the magnet with the sensor. This allows the sensor to tell me if the garage has started moving (tilt angle changes), if the garage is open (the sensor is horizontal), or if the garage is closed (the sensor is vertical). I use this not only for my bike protection scheme, but also because I am one of those people who leaves the house and wonders, “did I close the garage?” Parenthetically, using this setup and some additional geekery, I have also devised a way to open and close my garage from anywhere in the world, as long as I have connectivity. But I digress…

The next step is to download the SmartRules app to your phone, log in with your SmartThings credentials, and then create a rule with the following settings:

These are the simple settings for your Smart Rule (click to enlarge). Don't forget to Enable and Save each time you want it to work!

These are the simple settings for your Smart Rule (click to enlarge). Don’t forget to Enable and Save each time you want it to work!

Now, here comes the most critical step in the entire process. Forget this step, and you will not be protected in any way. Whenever I leave the house with bikes on the car, I enable the rule. With the rule enabled, the SmartThings/SmartRules combo will alert me via push notification and text message when I arrive at home and the garage starts to open.

Since I mentioned it on the show, I wanted to add that I also have a SmartThings Arrival Sensor in and assigned to each of our cars. I have different SmartRules scripts to alert me when either of the cars leaves the garage open after leaving the house, and also to turn on certain lights in the house when each of the cars returns. Once you have home automation, you come up with all sorts of useful (and silly) ways to use it.

Enjoy! And let me know in the comments how this worked for you, if you have some other fun way to protect your bikes, or if you have any questions.

Disclaimer: All of the above works for me, most of the time. The occasional glitch, bug, Internet connectivity failure, and/or forgetting to enable the rule, can and will cause the rule to fail. Keep this in mind, and do not sue me if you try this and it doesn’t work. Test it extensively before relying on it to protect your $25,000 carbon/unobtanium dream bike.

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