Have you ever wished there was a better way to be notified when your laundry was done? Have you ever forgotten a load in the washer because you couldn't hear the buzzer and your clothes became smelly and moldy from sitting there for too long? Well, I have and decided to solve this problem by building this simple notification system using an Arudino microcontroller. It uses a dual-axis accelerometer to detect motion and vibration coming from the washer (or dryer) and alerts my phone via SMS text message when the machine is no longer vibrating. I tried to build the easiest system I could using parts sourced from a local store and some online tools that help simplify the process of sending these alerts. Follow along as I show you how to put together this simple but useful project.

Step 1: Parts list

As I mentioned in the intro, I bought everything from my local Radio Shack, but you can find all of these parts at many other places. Most of the parts below that do not have a link were taken from a microcontroller pack I had (http://www.radioshack.com/make-ultimate-microcontroller-pack-w-arduino-kit/2770077.html), but these can be sourced from anywhere.

<p>Beautiful project I have something like that in: http://www.microcarsil.com.mx/2015/10/tarjeta-universal-phoenix-premium.html</p>
I need help. I am trying to do the same thing but with a voice/sound detector. Any help will be greatly appreciated!!!
<p>Check out the Uber Home Automation Instructable. I beleive he uses a mic to do the same thing.</p><p>https://www.instructables.com/id/Uber-Home-Automation-w-Arduino-Pi/ </p>
<p>This is a cool project. I have all the components, however my accelerometer, is a seeed studio analog unit. I have tryed to wire it up and make things work. With no luck, what bit of code would I need to change for the analog unit? </p>
<p>I had already been planning this as well. I had intended to test the current on both the washer and dryer to determine if they were active or not. I planned to do this using a on-invasive inductive method with a sensor wrapped around each of the power cords. I would need to add timer logic to account for the &quot;soaking&quot; phase of the wash cycle when only a tiny current draw was taking place (washer's timer motor). The other (invasive) method is to tap into the washer's circuit for the timer motor and have it close a relay (DPST) which in turn closes a circuit that Adruino would recognize. This would isolate it from the 120 volt side of things.</p>
<p>it says yun connected. but arduino port are not showing.</p>
<p>Hey this is so awesome ... I hat the same issue and the last three months I developed an app using phone acclerometer to check idle mode and let the phone call me. The funny part beside having the same idea is that I named the app also &quot;Washer Alarm&quot;. And after upload to Play Store I searched the net and found your project. I think we should combine our solutions :)<br><br>If somebody is interested check the app, it is for free --&gt; <a href="http://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=washeralarm.washeralarm" rel="nofollow"> http://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=wash...</a></p>
<p>Hi, I'm from Malaysia.. just want to ask, it there any possibility for me to find all this items for this project?</p>
<p>This sounds fun. But then again a timer works very well for things where time is the actual thing you're measuring. My unit has 2 washers and 2 driers. So building this would be four times the parts, and I'm sure it would have a decent set of headaches. I like pomodoro. I also like turtles.</p>
<p>Why could you not make one of these with a hanger that matches up to your machine? That way you can hang it in the machine your doing your laundry on, and take it back with you when your done. I LOVE the idea of putting a sensor on each machine, that way you can get machine status from your apartment and avoid going down to the laundry room just to find out that all the machines are in use. </p><p>I am thinking of using this same setup (minus the accel.) to monitor weather I left my garage door open, or txt me if it has been opened. </p><p>Bravo MakerBee!!!</p>
<p>Not necessarily. You could get an accelerometer for each unit, (for under $5 each) which supports I2C, and have all of them monitored by a single Arduino.</p>
It's true, it would be fun, especially if I could get the entire building on it, we could revolutionize the way we do laundry. For now I'll stick with my timer app though.
<p>Do took a look at the new ESP8266 modules. They are WiFi modules that cost about $3. You can program them directly or connect to another uC. I have a short article on it here: </p><p><a href="http://electronut.in/an-iot-project-with-esp8266/" rel="nofollow">http://electronut.in/an-iot-project-with-esp8266/</a></p>
<p>Haha ok. Yes, I agree. Thanks for the feedback.</p>
Would there be a way to have the arduino receive an input value from a screen and then text the correct associated phone number if you have a lot of users but one machine?
<p>An accelerometer is overkill in this case, even ignoring the other suggestions (LEDs or sound). Just a small vibration sensor (like a dollar at most) does the same job. I have mine set up via a local XBee network so I don't need to use an expensive YUN for it. One XBee with a small Arduino Trinket pings another Trinket upstairs and sets off an alarm and LED. </p>
<p>Yes, you are correct. As I have stated to others countless times (next time I will just add a disclaimer in the Instructable), these were parts I had and I merely created this Instructable for fun to share with others. In no way was I suggesting that this was an economical or practical solution to this problem. But your idea is great and a much simpler and cheaper solution. Thanks for the feedback.</p>
<p>Very fun idea. OK, OK, I admit that I help my wife with laundry -- so how might I set this up to send text msg to two phones? Thank you</p>
<p>All you have to do is modify the part of the code where it sends out a text message and add another phone number in there. I'm not sure if Twilio requires a separate account for each number or if they allow for multiple recipients on one account, but either way it can be done very easily. Good luck on your project!</p>
<p>I am VERY new to using Arduino boards and was gifted an UNO R3 a while ago and was wondering if it was compatible with the YUN, and if it was possibly usable for this project?</p>
<p>Yes, you can accomplish this with an UNO, but would have to add a wireless board or shield to do it the way I did. If you don't care about the text messaging part, you can also have the Arduino notify you in some other creative way.</p>
<p>Great idea!!! if You want to use push notification instead of SMS take a look to <a href="http://www.pushetta.com%2C/" rel="nofollow">www.pushetta.com</a> it's a free service I made to send push notification (also) from Arduino Yun to Android and iOS phones.</p><p>Regards</p><p>fg</p>
<p>Cool, I'll take a look at it. Thanks for the suggestion.</p>
Ill go a little cheaper and ask someone at one of the shops that takes old comps Ect about parts ;)
<p>Great idea. I'm sure there are many other less expensive ways to accomplish the same task. I just already had these parts at my disposal. Good luck on your project.</p>
Best idea ever! Would save so much water, clothes, detergent ,electric and time! Thank you my laundry will appreciate it &amp; so will my bills O.0!
<p>Haha, awesome! Glad you enjoyed the write up. Thanks for the feedback!</p>
<p>Wow, reading the comments, your first Ible is inspiring lots of makers! Keep up the good work!</p>
<p>Thank you for the feedback! This was a great first experience and I look forward to writing more in the near future.</p>
Ill go a little cheaper and ask someone at one of the shops that takes old comps Ect about parts ;)
<p>Most auto washing machines give a beep beep beep noise when the washing cycle is finished. Could one of these microprocessors be configured to recognize that and notify you by text? </p>
<p>Yes, definitely. That would be a great idea and one that was actually suggested before in one of the other comments below. I think that might work even better since you can be notified exactly the moment it is done. Thanks for the feedback!</p>
<p>Or a light sensor over the LED that shows that the machine is finished. Actually my machine has an LED indicator for every step in the washing cycle. I could open the machine and tap the Arduino into this LED board.</p>
<p>Nice! You inspired me for my next project! I actually need this because i often forget when the wash is finished since i am using the building's common washing machine room, which results in me losing time from... the dryer room! No more wet clothes! I will make it cheaper (for about less than half the cost) and more versatile (no need for WiFi) and will post it here as an instructable with the proper credits to you as the inspiration source! Thanks! </p>
<p>Great, good luck on your project! Can't wait to check it out! Thanks for the feedback.</p>
<p>Ha ha ha, I Love it !!!</p><p>Two and a half men TV series.</p><p>Charlie: His Cell Phone Rings,...&quot;wait I think that's my Laundry Calling&quot;</p>
<p>That's awesome! I was just thinking though, don't some wash cycles incorporate a soak, where the drum stops turning part-way through? But I wonder if the current detection method would help with that? Presumably the current drops off to &quot;standby&quot; levels when the drum isn't actually turning or the pump pumping... :/ Tricky.</p>
<p>Yes, you are correct. The way I worked around that is by accounting for this in my code. I just set a &quot;wait time&quot;, which is essentially a delay before the arduino thinks the cycle is done and sends out a text message. Of course this means that I won't be notified immediately after the machine is actually complete (and not during a rinse cycle), but this project was mostly just for fun and I wasn't looking for exact timing. But great observation and I'm sure some of you can come up with a better and improved system. Thanks for the feedback!</p>
<p>another approach that i think would work well, would be to use a sensor that detects the electrical load from the washing machine. In other words, detect whether the washing machine is using electricity or not. Surely there's a way to do this. At least the way i'm thinking could be a wrapped copper wire around the machine's wire to the wall outlet. You could even add a light detecting cell in front of the LED that lights up on the machine XD, there's certainly a lot of ways to go about it.</p>
<p>If you scroll down a bit, I talked about my laundry monitoring project where I'm doing current sensing in my build. I included a picture of the sensor.</p>
<p>perhaps implementing a microphone to detect sound as well as vibration</p>
<p>That's a great idea! You can probably approach that in two ways. Either the microphone tries to detect silence OR the microphone is programmed to listen for the sound of the buzzer going off. The latter one sounds like it might be a fun solution to try. Thanks for the suggestion.</p>
<p>Cool~</p><p>Some laundry support wifi &amp; smart app.(LG or Samsung) </p><p>My mother don`t use this smart function. but this is quiet a useful. </p>
<p>Haha, great. Thanks for the feedback!</p>
<p>I actually built something like this for my dorm last year! However, instead of sending a text, I had it update a Web page that showed the status of the machines.</p>
<p>Wow, that sounds awesome! I think more laundromats should have a system like that. Wish I could have seen your system.</p>
<p>you can also send sms via email</p>
<p>Yes you can, great point!</p>
<p>Great seeing an idea i had come up as well come to fruition. Great job!!</p>

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