I recently made it home to a 35 degree Fahrenheit house. My furnace had failed to restart. Fortunately, nothing had a chance to freeze and I was able to get it running again.
“How can I monitor my house temperature remotely?” I asked myself.
After a trip to Best Buy I had a $70 answer. I ended up purchasing a LaCrosse Technology Weather Direct 4-Day Weather Forecaster, Model# WD-3105, which includes a remote wireless temperature sensor and connects to my home network router. The main LCD display unit displays the room temperature in the upper right corner, and periodically flashes the remote unit temperature along the bottom scrolling area. It also displays the forecasts which are updated every six hours. The remote temperature is updated to www.theweatherclub.com/WeatherMap.aspx every five minutes as long as my home broadband Internet connection is functional.
The remote wireless temperature sensor is weather resistant and is intended for protected outdoor temperature monitoring. However, I wanted to be able to know the temperature in my house by going to a website.
The LaCrosse system itself was easy to set up by following the included instructions. To function, the unit requires an always-on broadband Internet connection. Once registered with the LaCrosse website, the LCD display displays the time, the temperature, and a simple four-day weather forecast that’s automatically updated every six hours. Additionally, it can be selectively set up to sound alert tones for a very extensive list of weather and disaster warning events.
Getting The Weather Club website to automatically display my remote wireless temperature sensor proved to be rather tricky. After continuing to tinker with the website I finally got it to automatically display my temperature.
As a just-in-case backup plan, I also aimed a handy-dandy webcam at the main LCD display, so that I can log in remotely to a small computer that I usually leave running while I’m gone, and view the temperature on the LCD display.
If you want to remotely control the temperature in your house via a WiFi-enabled thermostat, that’s also possible, but the cost goes up to around $400 not including installation. For now, I’m happy with just being able to monitor things back home from anywhere I happen to be and know that everything is okay.
You can find me on Twitter.Com as “TruckerTom.” Email me with comments or questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. I do a mostly-daily MP3 audio podcast located at www.TruckerTomPodcast.com where you can either listen online on your computer or download it to listen on a portable MP3 player. I produce an HD video podcast available at www.FindingAmericaHD.com.