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Hooking my wireless doorbell to the Internet

Here is a fun project: hook my wireless doorbell to the Internet and get SMS when someone rings it. Useful when I am not at home or am in the backyard and can’t hear it, but I carry my mobile phone with me.

My wireless doorbell is some cheap model that Google doesn’t even find, but it is powered by two 1.5V AA batteries. It is also quite bulky and I could easily fit a Funky sensor in it.  It has a green LED that flashes when the doorbell is ringing, so I decided to use it to pull a digital pin high when someone is ringing. I also did setup that digital pin for pin-change interrupts, so that the Funky sleeps constantly and is only wakened when necessary i.e. that pin is pulled high:

sbi(GIMSK,PCIE0); // Turn on Pin Change interrupt
sbi(PCMSK0,PCINT1); // Which pins are affected by the interrupt
Here are some pictures of the setup
So the sketch just sleeps and awaits until a pin-change interrupt kicks in, then reads the state of pin 1 and sends it. Another power-down follows for this to repeat forever..
[Edit] See my update on getting this to work here 
Emoncms will then pick up the transmission and register it. I tried to set up email notifications when I get value “1”, but I couldn’t. I will follow up once this is ready. The idea is that I forward these to a email2sms service that my mobile operator has and therefore receive a SMS message. Until then I can view the event in Emoncms’s logs.
This same approach may be used in many other scenarios, for example in interfacing wireless PIR sensors, flood sensors, door magnetic sensors. The benefit is that the system sleeps all the time and only wakes to do work.

17 thoughts on “Hooking my wireless doorbell to the Internet

  1. Tim Hoffman


    I have been following your progress with ‘funky’ and you mentioned you might be building some for sale on Jeelabs forum. How are you plans on that front progressing ?

    1. admin Post author

      Hi Tim,
      Tobias didn’t reply to my email, but I got his permission to “copy&clone” here
      I guess that is good enough.
      EDIT: I now have Tobias’s permission.
      I do have some extra Funky PCBs, you can contact me (in the About page) and I can send you either a bare PCB or a built Funky. The current version has the step-up inductor way too close to the RFM12B module and requires some hacking to solder, but if you need just a “normal” Funky, powered by CR2032 or two AA(A) batteries, you can omit the step-up circuit.
      I have ordered a fixed PCBs today, but it will take at least couple weeks before they reach me.

  2. jwestra

    If you have a smartphone then I advice to use a push service instead. Free, easy to setup very fast and reliable.
    I use PingAndroid for my android phone.

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  4. Phil

    I had similar thoughts about putting a jeenode inside my burglar alarm control panel to monitor the triggers and if It’s possible to hack the remote keypad protocol I could even arm/disarm remotely.

    1. admin Post author

      That I want to do some day, have been thinking about it for a while. It will be a challenge though. Easiest way will be just to simulate button presses on the keypad, not elegant but will probably work.

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    1. admin Post author

      I use a Nanode for my permanent setup, but I have done it with Raspberry Pi + TinySensor as well. There are many options, any RFM12B to Internet type of solution will do and there is tons already available

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