Home Assistant Notifying of Clothes Washer Completion

My clothes washer makes a little jingle when it completes a cycle, however that noise isn’t exactly loud, and its simply not possible to hear it other than in the room right next to the machine. Because of this I’d like to get a text message notification when the machine finishes.

Goals

  • Send a notification to my phone when the washing machine is done
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Sending Notifications to Phones from Home Assistant

As I build out my smart home systems, I have realized that I wanted to be able to push notifications from it to my phone. I have other services that do this through Email, so I wanted to set up something similar with home assistant. I have a list of a few things I would like notifications of, and getting one or two of them off the list will at least prove out my implementation and give me some more capability from my home assistant setup.

Some things to notify me of

  • water leaks
  • washing machine done
  • chest freezer without power
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Setting up Z-Wave in Home Assistant on Proxmox

Recently I have ended up with 2 Z-Wave devices in my home, and while the devices work just fine without it enabled, I wanted to mess around with them in home assistant. I’ve seen lots of information on Z-Wave and Zigbee devices and sensors and had been looking at getting some anyway, so I used this as a reason to jump in.

Since I run Home Assistant on a VM via Proxmox, my setup will end up being a bit different than the usual “just plug in the USB Z-Wave controller and go” for those running Home Assistant on a Raspberry Pi or NUC.

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Calling HASS API from Various Shells

While working on making my macro pad trigger Home Assistant automations, I found the API would be the easiest way to integrate the systems. Here’s some of my experimenting with the API and how to call it from Linux curl and PowerShell Invoke-WebRequest

Linux Curl

Using the Linux curl command is pretty straight forward.

curl -X POST http://hass.local:8123/api/services/switch/toggle -H 'Authorization: Bearer ABCDEF' -d '{"entity_id": "switch.testsubject_test_subject"}'

PowerShell Invoke-WebRequest

PowerShell is a bit more annoying to get everything right, as Invoke-WebRequest is a bit pickier on its input arguments.

Invoke-WebRequest -Method POST -Uri "http://hass.local:8123/api/services/switch/toggle" -H @{"Authorization"="Bearer ABCDEF"} -Body '{"entity_id": "switch.testsubject_test_subject"}'

Apparently windows has a build of the official Unix curl and tar commands, but my PowerShell prompts all had curl as an alias to Invoke-WebRequest. I did find that if i call curl.exe, it would run the official curl command.

Conclusion

Do be careful when copying and pasting between shells, I found that copying out of the PowerShell prompt and back in would yield an invalid token. This was also encountered in the WSL terminal as well.

The API is pretty straight forward after a little bit of trying things out. The documentation covers the capability but doesn’t have as many examples as I would have liked otherwise.

Resources

WLED Automation for Roku in Home Assistant

I was able to get WLED going on a light strip but I do have a lack of ideas on how to make use of it. I finally decided to go with the tried and true movie lighting. So my goal is to setup automations so that when my Roku begins playing something, the WLED strip dims and sets to a specific color (we’ll go with red), and when I pause or stop playing, it will turn to max brightness white light. This will give lower lighting while watching and brighter lights if something is paused (and I have to go get something). I’m still not entirely sure if I will end up making use of this in the end, but it will give me some ideas on what I can do and how to do it.

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Adding a Current Month Numeric Sensor to Home Assistant

I have a number of Christmas light strands in various windows around my house. These get turned on once a year when we remember they exist and its around Christmas time. I decided that these would be a good use for home assistant to add some Christmas lighting during November and December.

To do this, I wanted an automation that would turn on the lights during specific months, and not during others. Thus I needed the current month available as a condition for my automation. I quickly found out that Home Assistant does not have this type of data built in, but can have it added relatively easily. I didn’t know how most of this was supposed to go together, so after a little bit of guess and check, here is what I ended up with.

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Automated Stairway Night Lights

I wanted a simple but useful project as my first bit of home automation after getting some CloudFree smart plugs. We have fairy (christmas) lights on our banisters going upstairs that we plug in whenever we want to use them, so why not set them up on the smart plugs and setup an automation to turn them on at night, and turn them off around when we should be going to bed. This seemed like a simple enough project for a first shot at it, and something that we would use.

Goal

  • Stairway lights turn on before sundown
  • Stairway lights turn off around bedtime on weekdays
  • Stairway lights turn off slightly later on weekends
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CloudFree Tasmota Smart Plug Setup

I’ve wanted to mess about with the whole home automation craze that seems to be going on, but on a fully self-hosted installation (no alexa, no google assistant, my data staying all on my network). After the SelfHosted Podcast mentioned the CloudFree smart plugs, I knew they were the right gear to try out. The smart plugs come from CloudFree which has the plugs pre-flashed with Tasmota.

The quick start guide worked perfectly for the initial setup and getting the smart plugs on my WiFi network. I’ll have that guide below (in case its lost) and continue on with my own instructions for connecting to Home Assistant via MQTT afterwards.

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Home Assistant Supervised

I was originally running a home assistant VM using a script that loaded HASS into proxmox, however the HASS.io image didn’t have the tooling that I like having on a machine for general management of the system. I started researching and took a few turns around to find the right installation script, but I did and included the commands below. The following shell commands and script install Home Assistant Supervised on a general X86 machine. This worked fine on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS.

sudo su
apt-get install -y software-properties-common apparmor-utils apt-transport-https avahi-daemon ca-certificates curl dbus jq network-manager socat

systemctl disable ModemManager
systemctl stop ModemManager

curl -fsSL get.docker.com | sh

curl -sL "https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Kanga-Who/home-assistant/master/supervised-installer.sh" | bash -s -- -m qemux86-64

The default port for HASS is 8123, so go to the server IP:8123 to finish configuration. This will give you all the benefits of the HASSio images for raspberry pi and intel nucs but with your own preferred operating system rather than using the build thats included with the home assistant built images (which are very limited).