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How to Use Wireless Bathroom Occupancy Sensor

A tiny wireless occupancy sensor to begin your journey with the Internet of Things

Make Office Smarter with Occupancy Sensor

We have been playing with a tiny and cheap wifi module ESP8266 to begin our adventure with the Internet of Things. We started with a simple project to improve productivity and make office life better. From the list of ideas, we have chosen an occupancy sensor for the office bathroom. It is a real problem when you have only one toilet on the floor, because it is occupied almost every time you walk past it.

To solve “the toilet problem” we decided to create a simple, low-cost device that could check the status of bathroom occupancy and send data to Syncano (a backend for apps that with modules to easily get real-time updates). Then, we could share data with colleagues so that they could build an app to let the next user know when the toilet is available. Here is the list of parts we used:

  • Microcontroller ATmega328P
  • Wifi module ESP8266
  • Reed sensor (open/close door)
  • LDO 3,3V LF33CV Voltage Regulator, 0.5A, 3.3 V
  • Filter capacitors
  • Diode
  • Two resistors
    • Once you connect everything it should look like this:

      ESP8266 Wireless Occupancy Bathroom Sensor
      ESP8266 Wireless Occupancy Bathroom Sensor

      IoT in the Bathroom

      From this point, everything was ready to build the app to let the next user know when the toilet is available. We decided to go with a website that we could use to display information on screens in the open space. After an hour, the website was ready and the app was running on the big screen.

      Another interesting thing is that with Syncano’s cloud feature you can trigger a script when the data changes. Let’s say we have 10 sensors sending/receiving data, and we would like them to communicate together. Thanks to Syncano solution, we could do it easily. What is most important is that we could re-program our system without touching the devices, because all of the scripts are on the backend side. So it is a great communication tool for the Internet of Things. Cool, right?