Based on the air quality, humidity and temperature, some automations can be triggered. No matter if the bathroom fan should be switched on when the air humidity is too high, the air purifier when the air quality is poor or the air conditioner or fan on hot days: For all these automations, the Aqara air quality sensor TVOC can serve as a trigger. We took a closer look at the new device.
Temperature and humidity sensors have become quite common. Some sensors are even hidden in motion detectors or contact sensors. Air quality sensors are less common, but can still be found in many HomeKit devices. The Aqara TVOC is one of the less expensive sensors, but it still has an integrated e-ink display. Reason enough to take a closer look at the device.
The scope of delivery includes, in addition to the device itself, the two CR2450 button cells required for operation, an instruction manual as well as an adhesive pad and a magnetic holder for mounting.
Communication is done via Zigbee 3.0, which is supposed to provide up to a year of battery life, but it also requires a corresponding hub from Aqara. The original Aqara hub does not work with the new sensor due to the lack of Zigbee 3.0 support.
In addition to temperature and humidity, the air quality is also shown on the display in five levels using leaves, which can be read directly and at any time. Full leaves indicate excellent air quality, a single leaf indicates very poor air quality. Volatile organic compounds (VOC) are measured, just like the Eve Room does.
The Aqara TVOC is connected to the hub via the manufacturer's own app. The three sensors then appear in the app. Both the current value and the daily average are displayed. For a better overview, the historical data is also displayed in a graph.
In addition to the possibility of integrating the device into automations via the Aqara app, the unit of air quality can also be changed in the device settings from mg/m³ to ppb, i.e. parts per billion can be changed.
Clearly more exciting than the manufacturer's own app is, of course, the integration in Apple HomeKit. Here, too, the three sensors are displayed with the current values.
The air quality can be used as a trigger for automations in Apple's Home app. An automation can be executed if one of the five levels is exceeded or not reached.
Via third-party HomeKit apps, the other sensors can also serve as triggers. Even the change of the battery capacity can control other HomeKit devices, e.g. via the app Home+ by Matthias Hochgatterer.
With the new air quality sensor from Aqara, the manufacturer has released a pretty device with an integrated display and HomeKit support. In addition to air quality, humidity and temperature are also integrated into Apple's Smarthome platform. This allows numerous automations to be created, which not only make the technology heart beat faster, but can also simplify everyday life. In terms of price, the sensor is one of the more affordable HomeKit air quality sensors. We find the use of batteries instead of a rechargeable battery a bit unfortunate.
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