There are several benefits to lighting systems, and there are two types of lighting systems.
We'll start with the two types of systems:
Wireless Lighting System - This is usually the best option when a house has already been built. You simply swap out each light switch that you want controlled, with a smart light switch. From there, we can add multi functions buttons to them allowing you to not only control lights, but also control shades, tvs, music etc. The lights can also now be controlled via iOS apps, and we can set schedules for the lights to turn on and off by themselves.
Centralized Lighting System - This is usually the best option when building a new space. We work with the architect and designer to create a lighting plan, with specific numbered zones. All of the lighting zones go back to a main centralized panel. We then have low voltage keypads in each room that can control the lights. This is the most efficient, and cleanest way to do a lighting system. You avoid having to have multiple light switches in each room. For instance, a kitchen might have a bank of 4 or 5 light switches traditionally, but with a system like this, it would only need 1 keypad. The keypads have 2-8 buttons and can be engraved. The keypads can also control the shades, music, tvs, etc. The lights can also now be controlled via iOS apps, and we can set schedules for the lights to turn on and off by themselves.
The benefits of a lighting system are:
Energy Savings - We can program the lighting system to save energy in at least 3 ways. The first way is, when turning on the lights in a room, we can set the lights to turn on to 80% brightness. This small difference isn't noticeable, but will save you a lot of money. Beyond that, we can set certain rooms to turn off automatically after a specific amount of time. Like a powder room, we can set to turn off automatically after 30 minutes. The next way we can save energy is with an All Off button. When you leave your house, and you press All Off, every light in the house will be turned off. You won't have that closet light on all day sucking energy. You can read a related tech post on lighting analytics and how we saved a client some energy.
Lighting Scenes - Never walk in to a dark room, that's our goal. Rather then walking in to each room and turning on each light one at a time, room by room, we can light up your way in a smarter way. With the right programming, one press of a button on a keypad can light up rooms based on your task or activity. If we know that when you come home, you go in one of three directions (den, kitchen, or bedroom) then we can create scenes that light up your paths to each room, and light up that room itself. This is a very small example of how lighting scenes can help. In my own home, I have the ability to turn rooms on or off from the next room over. So if i'm in the den which borders the kitchen, I have a button in my den called kitchen that will turn it on or off. Beyond that, you can do similar things from your phone. Without opening the app, you can recall a scene from your widgets when you are just a few minutes away from home.
Timers - This is one of my favorite features. Everyone lives differently, so scenes and timers really have to be based on how you live. This is especially helpful for shabbat mode. Dining room lights, etc. For me, on my daily timers, at 30 minutes before sunset, I have my exterior lights, Den lamp, and common hall lights turn on. Then at 11:15PM I have all lights in my house turn off. If i'm having a party or guests, I can easily disable all schedules for that night. On that note, I also have my TV turn off at 1AM.
Status - Glance at your iPhone app, or TouchPanel to know which lights are on or off in the house. You can easily tell someone left the lights on in the basement, and shut them off. This works from anywhere in the world.
Engravings - Having your light switches or keypads engraved (free with systems) helps tremendously. Scenes, or direct light control, engravings changes how quickly you can get things done. Pair that with the way we program systems, the top button usually does 90% of what you need done in that room.
Lifetime warranty - Crestron offers lifetime warranties on all of their shades and lighting products.