Smart Home Level 1: Simple Automatic Lighting


Light automation can be the simplest and cheapest forms of automation that can be implemented in your home. This guide will provide a way for you to implement a closet light that turns on when the closet door is opened; and off when the door is closed.

  • Time to implement: 30 mins to 1 hour
  • Complexity: Easy
  • Cost: less than $30

Safety First

Always remember when working with electricity, to turn off the breaker or fuse to the area that you’ll be working in. Additionally, wear rubber gloves, and use well insulated tools to avoid any accidental contact with a live wire. When joining wires always secure them with wire nuts, splicing sleeves or electrical tape.



Locate the outlet that will provide power to your lights. It’s preferable if this source is hidden, and away from view. In my installation a hole was drilled to the back of an exiting power outlet, and the wires to the power supply were spliced and joined to this circuit.

Next, the wires for the light were spliced and connected to the magnetic switch, such that when the magnetic switch is apart, the switch is opened; and when the magnets are close, the switch is closed. This would be the Normally Closed Configuration.

Review your wiring, light, switch, and power source layout, so that when the light is installed, the connector is available to the magnetic switch; and the magnetic switch is within reach of the power source, while positioned on the door and door frame so it can open/close with the door. Open door = closed switch; Closed door = open switch.

Proceed to install the light by sticking it in position. I stuck mine against the door frame so that It’s out of view, and the focus into the closet.


Connect the end of the light to the switch, and install the switch against the door/door frame; followed by connecting the switch to the power source.

Turn your breaker/fuse back on, and if all was aligned properly, your closet should light up when you open the door; and go dark when you close the door.

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