I use HomeKit to simplify home management for the elderly. One of the things I want to address is the failure of a sump-pump, or flooding condition.
Is there a way I can cause a HomeKit sensor to cause this notification?
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It depends on the manufacturer of the sensor you're using. If it supports HomeKit notifications, you can set them by pressing on the device's icon in the Home app.
Apple says if you set up HomeKit on an Apple TV or an iPad that always at home, it acts as a intermediate and lets you keep updated from your iPhone even when you are not at home. Notifications include. Theoretically, it also covers flood sensing.