Mar 1, 2010
Science Scene - Wireless Light Switches
A small module inside each light switch harvests energy from the motion of turning the switch on or off and uses it to transmit radio signals up to 300 feet away to a central 10-channel controller that’s hardwired to the fuse box. Since the switches generate their own power, they require no batteries, wires or messy electrical channels carved into my brand-new insulated wall panels.
Other whole-home lighting control systems offer more programming options, but they’re also more expensive and cost more to install because of all the wiring. At $3,500, Verve runs me only a bit more than the price of a home’s worth of fancy dimmers. The downside? The system is designed mostly for new construction—retrofits get messy and costly because they require ripping out wires.