vThings – CO2 and Dust Monitor v3

Consider the Holiday Gift Guide for an overview of the product line

Why vThings ?

The vThings – CO2 and Dust Monitor can be plugged to any private Home automation system and report key environmental data like CO2, Dust (PM 2.5, 10), Temperature, Pressure, Humidity and Light via HTTP or MQTT over WiFi or via RF 433/315 MHz (RFXCom).

It is a result of continuous evolution, that started in 2014 and is still actively ongoing. I’ve been in close contact with several online communities during this time, who provided me with the use-cases that are most feasible in the Home Automation Scenario.

The design is OpenSource and OpenHardware. Unlike other devices that cost twice and have fancy Mobile Phone Apps and keep your data on their premises, the vThings device is all yours. This makes sure that even after a several years, you won’t rely on a company long gone maintaining some Mobile app or hosting service. This is what makes the design timeless and saves costs a lot.


Another key aspect is hardware customization. As home automation enthusiast I clearly understand that having the full set of sensors in each room is useless and drives up cost. This is why I’ve invested a lot in the possibility to use custom sets of sensors. This way the unique set of devices for each home can be assembled. Here are the options that can be chosen for each device:

  • CO2 – All Sensors are NDIR
  • Dust
    • Cubic PM2005 – High-Precision Laser Dust Sensor, measures PM2.5 and PM10 in µm/m
      • The majority of the alternative devices uses cheap optical dust sensors that provide only relative results. I decided to go for quality and precision
  • Temperature
    • SI7021 – High Precision (±0.3 °C) + Humidity
    • BME280 – Temp(±0.5 °C) / Humidity / Pressure
    • BMP180 – Temp(±0.5 °C) / Pressure
    • DS18B20 – Temp (±0.5 °C)
  • Light (LUX)
    • For the standalone WiFi Lux Meter2
      • BH1750 – 0.1 – 120,000 LUX – can measure direct sunlight w/o getting saturated
      • TSL2561 – 0.01 – 50,000 LUX – Measures very low-light and also IR light
    • Default – each CO2 / Dust monitor also measures Light (for the sake of LED brightness). While not absolute (LUX), the data is available and can be used.
  • VOC – I have plans to add VOC metering to the device, I just need some spare time to build the extension. Afterwards, adding the sensor to the device will be quite straightforward

Based on the sensor selection there are different 3D printed enclosures that I am using (mostly because of the heat emissions and temperature sensor)

This is what they look like:

If Temperature Sensor is included
Only Dust or only CO2

Only Temperature:


The device is configured via a Chrome App and a USB Cable or via WiFi.

  • USB Cable – USB Drivers and a Chrome app need to be installed. Description is here
  • WiFi – The device opens up a hotspot that allows configuration of the home WiFi Network. And then the config tool located here, automatically locates the device (provided both are on the same wifi network) and let’s you configure it.


I’ve spent special care that the configuration to the most popular Home Automation systems is as easy as possible. For the rest – there is always the possibility for Generic HTTP or MQTT setup. I doubt that i will be able to create dedicated plugins for each Home Automation System, so I would welcome any contributions in this area. So far i’ve included automated configuration to the following services:

  • Public Services
    • BeeBotte, Dweet.IO, EmonCMD, ThingSpeak, UbiDots
  • Private Services
    • DomotiGa, DomoticZ, FHEM, Homeseer, HomeAssistant, JeeDom, OpenHAB, Pimatic
  • Generic
    • HTTP, MQTT, RF 433/315 (RFXCom)
  • Mobile
    • Blynk.cc

This blog category contains some descriptions how integration with some of those can be accomplished. And this post describes how the configuration is actually done with the configuration tool.


The current generation of devices can be powered via a standard Micro USB cable and USB Charger. Power Consumption is < 200ma. But can peak up to 400ma when WiFi is transmitting, so if longer cables are used, they need to be quality ones, else the voltage drop is too big

Where to buy

All devices from the vThings Family are sold in my online shop


  • Forum: http://forum.vair-monitor.com/forumdisplay.php?fid=2
  • Blog: http://vair-monitor.com/category/uncategorized/



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