10Best: Gadgets to protect your home while you're away

The most stressful part of being on vacation can be worrying about what's going on at home. Does the house look abandoned? Are the doors locked? What if the smoke alarm goes off?

If you need some peace of mind, these high-tech options make it easy to rule the roost from anywhere.

1. Canary

The most stressful part of being on vacation can be worrying about what's going on at home. Does the house look abandoned? Are the doors locked? What if the smoke alarm goes off?

If you need some peace of mind, these high-tech options make it easy to rule the roost from anywhere.

2. Ring Video Doorbell

When someone pushes the Ring Video Doorbell, it goes right to your smartphone so you can see and speak to whoever’s there, giving potential intruders the impression you’re home even if you’re halfway around the world. Ring features built-in motion sensors that detect movement, trigger instant mobile alerts and initiate HD video recording.

Ring recently partnered with the LAPD to donate and install their Video Doorbells in Wilshire Park, and after six months, home burglaries were reduced by 55 percent.

3. Piper

This DIY home security system keeps an eye on a specific area of your house and alerts you via your smartphone when it detects sound or motion. It even sets off a powerful intruder-deterrent siren when a security mode is breached.

Sleek and unobtrusive, it’s got a 180-degree immersive view camera plus two-way audio. If you place one in your garage, it will not only guard your car but it will prevent you from having to turn around again to see if you forgot to close the garage door.

4. Nest Protect

This smoke and carbon monoxide alarm looks for fast-burning fires, smoldering fires and invisible-but-deadly carbon monoxide. It speaks to you, letting you know what and where the danger is, and will message your phone if you’re not home.

It can also be silenced from your smartphone so if you simply overcooked your dinner, you don’t have to go climbing to turn it off. Nest Protect tests its sensors and batteries 400 times a day and will notify you when the battery is running low rather than beep all night until you can get a ladder to replace it.

5. Maximus Smart Security Light

Although it still illuminates the area around your front door, this sophisticated fixture – which comes in a variety of styles – does way more than traditional outdoor lighting. Equipped with a two-way speaker and Wi-Fi camera, it sends a real-time alert to your smartphone when it detects movement, allowing you to see and speak to anyone there and sound an alarm if necessary.

6. Caseta Wireless

Scheduling lights to turn on at varying times is a great way to deter burglars, and the Caséta Wireless kit lets you control the lights in your home from anywhere through the Lutron Electronics app.

Its new Smart Away feature randomly turns lights on and off between 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. to make your home look lived in – even when you’re on vacation. Caséta Wireless also ensures you never have to walk into a dark house again – or get out of bed to turn off the lights.

7. August Smart Home Access System

The August Smart Lock turns your smartphone into a smart key, giving you control of your front door even when you’re not home. Just specify who gets access and when, and forget about making spare keys for guests or service people.

The Doorbell Cam, which allows you to see, hear, talk to and record anyone who comes to your door, and Smart Keypad – which allows you to create unique entry codes for each guest – round out the package.

8. Presence Security Pack

Turn an old smartphone into a security camera by combining easy-to-install sensors with the award-winning Presence app. The system gives you a big picture view of your home while simultaneously allowing you to pay special attention to specific items like the security of your jewelry box, the status of your dog’s water bowl or the temperature in your fridge.

Presence monitors everyday situations while protecting your home, and gives you the opportunity to share alerts with friends and family in your Trusted Circle.

9. Vivitar Deluxe Home Automation Starter Kit

This trio of smart products has everything you need to keep a small space safe and secure. The CaptureCam streams and saves HD video to your smartphone and features a two-way microphone, motion detection, night vision and multi-camera angles.

The Smart Plug gives you control of your appliances so you can stop worrying about whether or not you turned off the stove. And the Smart Lightbulb screws into any standard socket, giving you the ability to monitor motion and temperature through your smartphone.

10. AT&T Digital Life

If you prefer 24/7 professionally-monitored home security, check out AT&T Digital Life which offers a slew of safety and automation gadgets. You can create the custom smart home of your dreams using sensors, monitors, sirens and features which guard your house and control your doors, devices and energy. It’s like a universal remote for your life.

Story courtesy USA TODAY.


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