Removing the cloud from a Sensibo Sky

Sunday, February 25th, 2024 at 10:21pm

In addition to thinking about a housing for my dishwasher panel I have been looking into a housing for my AC controllers which currently look like:

(yes I know I should have cleaned off the dust before taking the photo, but that was a quick photo taken for a talk at work)

What could the housing be? Do I base it around another wall plate? Do I get a wall mounted project box? Do I buy my first 3d printer?

After my experience with the dishwasher panel I also realised that as this is based on ESPHome, so I could add an indicator LED (red for heating, blue for cooling?) and a button (to quickly switch between a standard preset such as 24°C cooling and turning it off). These would also need to be incorporated into the housing.

In my looking around I found that the housing I wanted does exist, in the form of the Sensibo Sky. While there is Home Assistant integration I prefer a non-cloud solution and I already had that up and running.

I don’t know exactly how I came across it but I found a reddit thread showing how the Sensibo Sky is based on an ESP and had instructions on how to flash ESPHome onto it. This was an intriguing idea, but I wasn’t going to buy two Sensibo Sky units just to reflash them.

But there is eBay and Gumtree

(yes, it is always appropriate to spend 20 minutes watching Randy describe buying a bookshelf on Gumtree, 46:25 into Randy Writes a Novel)

eBay was no help, but on Gumtree I found something. While I was looking for used or broken units, what I found was someone not that far away selling two unused units for less than the price of a single unit. Sold! I picked them up the next day and thanks to the reddit instructions (I will make a separate post with my full steps) I was able to flash them with ESPHome.

A bit of reconfiguring within Home Assistant and these are now my AC controllers. I even have them mounted to the wall so they don’t take up desk or bedside table space.

While the built in LED is only blue I did configure it to indicate if the AC was currently on and I think I have a plan for the button. Normally this button is used to reset the Sensibo Sky to factory defaults which means that you use a pin through a small hole in the casing, but I think I could drill out that hole and then glue an extension onto the button, giving me the shortcut action trigger.

Could I go further with some of the pins that are exposed. Is is possible to replace or supplement the LED with an RGB version? Could I mount a button on the face of the unit instead of the side? These are all options opened up by the flexibility of running ESPHome ;)

Another idea relates to some issues I have been having the chromecast speaker I use as my alarm clock and the fact that I now have an IR blaster in my bedroom…

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