Saturday, September 16, 2023

Revolutionizing Air Quality Monitoring: How I Upgraded Our System with Mila Integration for Smart Home Automation

In this blog post, I explained how I set up an air quality monitoring system for our neighborhood. With this setup, we can keep an eye on the air quality outside our home. However, this monitoring system is somewhat passive because I need to manually check the air quality and take actions accordingly, such as turning on the HVAC fan to filter and circulate the indoor air.

I considered using the standard Home Assistant integration for Purple Air, but it shares the same drawback as the Magic Mirror integration in terms of API usage limitations. I wanted to avoid an integration that might eventually become unreliable due to API quota limits.

Recently, we purchased Mila connected air filters. These filters not only measure the air quality in the rooms where they're installed but also allow you to select a sensor for neighborhood air quality in the Mila application. Within a month of setting up our Purple Air monitor, I was able to choose it as the neighborhood air quality sensor in the Mila application. This feature enables the Mila filters to determine the relative differences in air quality between the indoors and outdoors.

Friday, September 1, 2023

Silencing the Breeze: Upgrading Legion Network Racks for Whisper-Quiet Performance

In our home, we utilize a couple of Legion 18 network racks. These particular 18U network racks are designed to be compact, making them suitable for placement in closets or offices. Additionally, they come equipped with built-in cooling features, specifically two 120mm fans located at the top of the rack.

However, while the built-in cooling is a valuable feature, I couldn't help but notice that the noise generated by the fans can be quite noticeable, particularly in quieter environments. One of the main reasons for this is that the fan speed is fixed; there's only an on/off switch available. Consequently, you can either turn the fans off entirely or run them at their default, relatively loud speed. This limitation led me to seek out replacement fans for the rack.

Stock fans from the Legion 18 network rack

After conducting some research, I decided to opt for the AC Infinity Rack ROOF Fan Kit. This kit includes two 120mm fans that can be connected to a provided fan controller, which, in turn, connects to a power source. The fan controller offers precise control over the fan speed, allowing for quieter operation.

Unlocking Raspberry Pi Potential: Navigating Network Booting Challenges for Enhanced Performance and Reliability

I've set up several Raspberry Pis around our house for various projects, but one recurring challenge is the potential for SD card failur...