smart home raspberry pi

25 awesome Raspberry Pi project ideas at home

Do you want to turn your home into a smart home?
The Raspberry Pi is an inexpensive way to set up projects like this

What can I do with a Raspberry Pi to make my home smart?
Well, there are several categories of projects that you can set up at home:

  • security
  • network
  • home automation
  • everyday life improvement

I will present some of the most impressive, and I will give you each time a preview of the result and a link allowing you to find all the information to set up this project

1 – Smart TV
kodi smart tv

Do you know that you can turn your old dumb TV in a smart TV for less than $50?
It’s the concept of the LibreElec distribution, running Kodi, an open source home theatre software

This project will explain to you how to install LibreElec with Noobs, and then how to use Kodi to play media files from a network share
You can also install extra add-ons on Kodi. For example, the Youtube app is an add-on you can install on Kodi to play Youtube videos on your old TV

It’s a simple project you can complete in one hour to improve your home

Source: RaspberryPi


2 – Philips Hue smart lights controller
philips hue raspberry pi

If you don’t already know, Philips Hue is a smart lights concept
You can buy a Starter Kit with a controller and two bulbs (check the price on Amazon) that you can control with a smartphone app
I’m using it for three years and it’s an excellent product

The app allows you to do several things like:

  • on/off lights on demand
  • timer
  • automatic and progressive ignition at a specific time
  • scenarios

Philips also provide an API on the controller to develop scripts to manage lighting scenarios
And you have probably already understood the purpose of this project
In the link below, Icepick explains how to control them from the Raspberry Pi.
It’s an excellent base to do what you want with smart lights

Source: Icepick

 


3 – Live calendar
smart live calendar

This one is a good idea to turn your old computer screen into a smart calendar
This project is also easy to build. It’s mainly DIY with not so complicated technical things

As you can see on the link below, they connect the Raspberry Pi to a monitor, run Raspbian and Iceweasel to open the calendar in full-screen mode
After that, you have to add some little configurations to disable mouse cursor and sleep mode
Then you’re done

If a schedule is not necessarily the thing that interests you the most, it is possible to display any web page
If you have some notions in web development, why not create your web page, with the information that interests you (weather, emails, facebook/twitter counters, a live webcam, your sales stats or whatever else)

Source: Instructables


4 – Plug your old printer on the network
dumb printer

If you still have a printer that needs to be connected to the computer all the time, this project may interest you

Indeed it is possible to plug the printer on a Raspberry Pi, which will then share this printer on the network (via cable or wifi depending on the model you have)
This project is straightforward,  install a software (CUPS) that will serve as a print server.
After that, install the printer on CUPS and finally on your computer

So for less than $50 you turn your old printer into a wifi printer 🙂
In the same state of mind, it is also possible to share an old USB scanner on the network

Source: Instructables

 


5 – Magic mirror
magic mirror raspberry pi

This project is well known to users of Raspberry Pi, and therefore, it has its place on this list
Michael Teeuw was the first to develop this idea, then taken up by hundreds of people he inspired

Indeed the result is exceptional, a smart mirror, which as you can see in the photo allows you to integrate pretty much what you want

The basis of the concept is to put a mirror, a TV screen and a Raspberry Pi inside a frame
The mirror is a specific two-way glass, which lets the text of the screen display while reflecting the image as a classic mirror (can be found on Amazon)
This glass is typically the kind of glass found in police interrogation rooms

Source: Michael Teeuw


6 – Smart button
smart button raspberry

This one is not an entire project, but an idea to have in mind when you start a new project
It’s a smart button that will push what you want when you ask for it
It’s the perfect tool to turn any dumb device into a smart device

For example, you could switch light, start the coffee machine, open the garage door or whatever
You can even use it to hit a key on your computer 🙂

You may control the button with your smartphone or other apps like Alexa or IFTTT
But you can also control it from your Raspberry Pi if you need to integrate it in a more significant project (ex: start the air conditioner when the temperature exceeds a certain threshold)

The button is not cheap (check the price on Amazon) but it can save you a lot of time and expense for some projects, so in some cases, it can be a good choice

Source: MicroBot

 


7 – Desktop notifier
raspberry desktop notifier

The purpose of this project is to create a desktop notifications manager
Currently, it displays the number of pending emails, fans on your Facebook and Twitter pages, as well as the number of pending Facebook notifications.

Overall it is mainly a coding project, to get the values on different web services (Facebook, Twitter, Gmail)
And then some electronics to display these values on the LEDs

It is possible to modify this project so that it shows the counters that interest you, but it is a good start and it is quite simple to set up

Source: Instructables


8 – Baby monitor
baby monitor

We are here on a project for lovers of homemade
Unlike the previous, it is not more economical than a commercial product, but it is much more interesting to set up 🙂

This project is indeed a monitoring system for your baby while he sleeps
A Pi raspberry coupled with a webcam that allows you to see and hear what’s going on in the room from another computer (or another Raspberry Pi)

You will find in the link below a complete tutorial if you want to try

Source: Hawkes blog


9 – Doorbell notifier
doorbell notifier

Would you like to know who rang the bell in your absence?
Or even know who’s ringing at your door when you’re there to avoid various solicitations?
This is the goal of this project, that will send you an email each time someone rings your door, with the person’s photo

This project is not as complicated to set up as it might seem
Just replace the original ringer with a wireless ringer
You will then connect it to your Raspberry Pi and a classic webcam that will take the photo

You’ll find all needed information on the link below

Source: Harizanov


10 – Christmas lights manager
christmas lights manager

You’ve probably seen these Christmas decoration videos that are all the rage in December
People have decorated their entire house and garden and animate it with music for an exceptional result

Well it is possible to use a Raspberry Pi to manage intelligence on this kind of project
As you can see in the photo of the installation above, it’s not a simple project to put in place, but it’s worth it

Here is the video shot by the person who wrote the tutorial:

Source: Chivalry Timbers

 


11 – Homemade Amazon Echo
amazon alexa echo

If you are on this site, you probably know who Alexa is 🙂
Alexa is the artificial intelligence developed by Amazon and sold as Amazon Echo

Echo products are available at a price ranging from $50 to $150, which is not cheap
If you already have a Raspberry Pi, and probably even a microphone and a speaker, it is possible to create your own Amazon Echo
Indeed the Amazon site for developers offers an API that allows you to call Alexa from any device

The tutorial presented in the link below will let you know all the steps to do it

Source: LifeHacker


12 – Music streaming box
music box

This project is an equivalent of the smart TV project but for music
You can build a music player with your Raspberry Pi and some basic hardware (basically a 3B+ starter kit will be enough)

Then you must install the Pi MusicBox distribution on your SD card, connect it to the network and your speaker, and that’s all, you’re done
Pi MusicBox will allow you to play local music or audio stream from the internet (like Spotify)
Then you can control the box from your browser or your smartphone; you don’t need any keyboard or remote control

Source: CodeProject

 


13 – Plants watering
plants auto watering

Ok if you plant the Raspberry Pi as in the picture, it will not grow 🙂
But the purpose of this project is interesting
It’s about controlling the irrigation of plants with your Raspberry Pi
The idea is to control the watering of the plants to do it only when it is necessary
The application is based on the API of a weather service to know the weather and adjust the watering accordingly
The tutorial shown in the link below explains the prerequisites, the step by step procedure and provides you the complete source code
I have also seen projects in which we use soil probes to adjust the watering to the need of each plant, but it will be the next level 🙂
Source: TechRadar

14 – Voice control
voice command raspberry pi

This one is not a complete project, but an inspiration to do what you want
The goal is to make possible voice commands on your Raspberry Pi

The principle is about the same as the aliases on Linux
You indicate the words that it must take into account and associate each order with a command to execute
It is even possible to have it answer your requests to be sure it has been processed

It will not go as far as a project like Alexa, but it tempts me to try
Imagine being able to start SSH by voice instead of having to plug a screen and a keyboard because you have forgotten the autostart 🙂

Source: TechRadar


15 – Weather station
raspberry pi weather station

This one is an advanced project, with a lot of components, that will improve your electronics and programming skills
The project is a weather station, that will collect a lot of information, like temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction
You can also add any custom sensors you want to complete the station

If you are British, you may know about this project
The Raspberry Pi Foundation had indeed sent thousands of kits of this kind to schools in the country

The software part is quite simple to put in place because the tutorial explains everything well
But there are a lot of components to buy, which you’ll then need to connect and assemble properly

Feel free to check out this full packs on Amazon instead of buying those recommended in the tutorial
These packs will often be cheaper

Source: RaspberryPi

 


16 – Home thermostat
nest home thermostat

Do you know Nest?
It’s a company that now offers a whole range of products around the connected home, but it was mainly known for its smart thermostats
Well, the goal of this project is to try to do the same thing for a lot less

The idea is to use a Raspberry with some extra components (like a temperature sensor) to regulate the temperature and humidity in your home
Then you’ll be able to control everything from a web interface or your smartphone

It’s a project that is not easy to implement, but it must be nice to finish

Source: Hackster


17 – Google Assistant
google assistant

I can not put Alexa on this list without talking about Google Assistant 🙂
This project is very similar to that of Alexa, but for fans of “Ok Google”

The steps will be pretty much the same:

  • Install a microphone and speaker on the Raspberry Pi
  • Make the Raspberry Pi communicate with Google web services
  • Pack all this in a nice box (here in wood, but free to do as you feel)

A real handyman made the tutorial, if this is not your case, remember that speakers on the port jack and a plastic box will work as well 🙂

Source: Instructables


18 – Garage opener with car plate recognition
garage opener plate recognition

I saw a lot of project on garage door openings during my research to create this list.
But it is probably the most complete so that you can adapt it to your needs

It’s not just going to open your garage door like a common remote
But it will:

  • Detect a car in front of the garage
  • Read the car plate
  • Detect the model of the car
  • Check that both match
  • Check that the car is allowed to enter
  • Open the garage door if necessary
  • Make sure the car is in and then close the door

All this works on a Raspberry Pi equipped with a simple camera
Car plate verification use the OpenALPR service and the program triggers a GPIO event for opening and closing the garage doors

Source: Randomnerdtutorials


19 – CCTV security cameras
cctv raspberry pi

A security camera is an easy project to set up with a Raspberry Pi
But in this one, you’ll learn how to build a complete home surveillance system and manage all cameras from one central system

In the tutorial, the schema is to use four Raspberry Pi Zero with their cameras and connect all to a central storage point (a classic Raspberry Pi)
From your computer, you’ll access the hub to monitor each camera from a single web interface

This installation perfectly replaces a complete video surveillance system of the market, for a reasonable budget
Click on the link below to find out more

Source: Randomnerdtutorials


20 – KittyCam: Cat Face Detection in Node.jskitty cam

Kittycam is an original project that turns your Raspberry Pi into a face detector for your cat.
In this project, she explains how to set up a motion detector, take a picture, perform the facial recognition of the cat, store the photos in the cloud and distribute them to the people concerned.
The only hardware used is a Raspberry Pi with a camera and a motion detector

Once you have successfully set up Kittycam, you can improve it by using your imagination (kibble dispenser, opening a door or anything else)

Source: GirlieMac


21 – Smart microwave
smart microwave

Ok the guy who shared this project has made funny pictures, but he also had good ideas
The goal of this project is to control your microwave from your Raspberry Pi, but not only

At the end of this project, you microwave could:

  • Be controlled with voice commands
  • Use a barcode scanner to look up cooking instructions on the internet
  • Make nicer sounds
  • Be accessed via a web page to control it

Yes it’s an awesome project that deserves his place on this list

Source: IndieGogo


22 – Arcade table
gaming arcade table

You will find tons of tutorials on the net about arcade kiosks
The basic idea is always the same: a Raspberry Pi, a video game emulator and joysticks and buttons of all kinds

What changes mainly between all these projects is the creativity of the designer
Everyone goes from their favorite format, whether it is a classic arcade terminal, a control table with a wall-mounted TV for display, or like here, all integrated into a table

I put you this tutorial because everything is well explained and easy to follow, whether the preparation of the table or the installation of Raspberry Pi
If you prefer another format I encourage you to search for something else, you should find easily

Source: Instructables


23 – Lawnmower robot
lawn mower robot

And yes … that’s what you think!
This guy has created a robot able to mow the lawn and based on a Raspberry Pi

In the manner of a commercial robot, it will mow your lawn automatically, in a predefined area
Limits are created through ultrasonic positioning nodes and a battery change station is installed to extend the mowing period

Everything has been planned in the project
For example, a web interface makes it possible to control the robot remotely
It even introduces the possibility of changing the role of the robot (for example to turn it into a snow plow in winter ^^)

I advise you to take a look at this project, even if it’s just out of curiosity
There is a video that deserves a look

Source: Hackaday


24 – Smart aquarium
smart aquarium

After cats and dogs, here are our fish friends 🙂
We will have gone around all the pets after this (And no, I have not planned anything for snakes and ferrets)

The project goal is to maintain the temperature of your aquarium
A sensor will take care of taking the temperature permanently and communicate it to any computer of the network

This is the first step for smart aquariums
For example, I also saw projects that distribute food to fish at predefined times or even auto-refill ideas

Source: ReadWrite

 


25 – Pool control
pool control

And the last project of this list is a big one

We will dive into the automation of your pool
The poolers offer more and more this kind of services when installing a new swimming pool

But as the guy who wrote the tutorial says, it costs a lot ($10000 he says)
The goal of this project is to do it with even less than $1000 of hardware and a few hours to get to the same result

This project makes it possible to control a spa and a swimming pool and you can adapt it to your installations
The web interface allows controlling especially pumps, heating and chlorine

Be careful though, I think this is the only project on this list that uses high voltage circuits
If you are not an electrician and do not have any electrical skills, you may need to look for help with this project.

Source: Instructables


Conclusion

And here we are at the end of my list of favorite projects for home

You now have a good overview of the possibilities of the Raspberry Pi at home and I hope that it will have made you want to test some of them.

If you know of others that are worth it, do not hesitate to share the links in the comments

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