There are a lot of things around the home which can be automated. For instance, at certain times during the day lights get turned on, sprinkler systems run, and so forth. Some of these operate based on time, while other operate based on need, such as pool auto-levelers, and sump pumps. However, some of these things are more important than others. If a light burns out it is less important than if a water value fails to come on or shut off. In an arid climate, a value failing to come on could kill a tree, while a valve failing to shut off could result in flooding an property damage. A pump failing to shut off could cause a fire.
Yet when I look at these systems, I don't see anything obvious that stands out as an alert mechanism when things fail. If I'm away from my property for a while, I expect the automation to work properly the whole time I'm gone, and I can't babysit things which should work. Yet when something does go wrong, I would like to know so the problem can be fixed ASAP.
How do people generally handle exceptional conditions like this? Am I just having bad luck? Am I the only person who has had things fail which don't call attention to themselves until something bad happens as a result? Or is there some best practice (aside from continual babysitting I hope!) to catch and detect these various sorts of problems as soon as they occur? If a home alarm system can send an alert to my phone when a door is ajar, why not when a device malfunctions?