Yep, all those awesome smart devices that you’ve had your eye on might actually save you some money. In addition to time savings a general feeling of convenience, you smart devices might actually be smarter about how they use energy.
In this post, we’re going to explore the most effective ways to save energy using smart energy saving lights and other smart home energy saving devices.
Energy Saving Lights
Most people forget to turn off their light bulbs as they move around the house or even leave for the day. You can easily save money on lighting costs by ensuring that your lights get turned off when they’re not in use.
If you’re not the one who turns the lights on, you don’t have to be the one who turns them off either. Smart, motion detecting light systems allow your lights to come on when you walk by and go off on a timer system if no further motion is detected. It’s the best way to provide outdoor lighting without running your bulbs all night long!
But motion detector lights can also be annoying. You don’t want every light in your house coming on and turning off as you walk by! So buying smart bulbs that can be individually controlled and customized through a smart app is a great solution. You can turn the lights on and off, individually, and also hit a single button to turn everything off before heading to bed.
Additionally, remote controls let you turn the lights on in your house before coming home. It’s great for people who aren’t too excited about coming home into a dark house!
Your smart lights don’t merely need to be connected to a remote control. With some smart lighting, you can actually use geo-fencing, in tandem with the location of your phone, to turn off and on lights as you move about the house or leave it entirely. Also, modern smart lights can have sensors built into them which detect motion even when geo-fencing isn’t relevant.
LED lighting actually uses a lot less energy than more traditional lighting sources. The bulbs also run a lot longer and are a lot cooler. Cooler bulbs prevents your house from heating up as much, which can save you AC during the summer months.
Smart Home Devices that Save Energy
Smart Power Strips
You’ve probably heard about appliances and electronics that function like energy vampires, sucking a bit of power whenever they are plugged in. Even if your laptop isn’t actively charging or if your smart TV is off, it still might be taking power out of the wall. It’s also called phantom energy. Now, you could unplug every single device when you’re not using them. But you’d be forgiven for thinking that that is a hassle and opting to use the extra energy instead.
But there’s a better way to do it! Smart outlets can automatically detect devices that are in use or not in use, cutting power to devices that don’t actively need it. The major offenders of phantom energy use are consumer electronics, like TVs, gaming consoles, and computers. Using smart strips and smart outlets on these devices will really help reduce the phantom energy draw of your home.
Your house isn’t great at heating and cooling itself. With a traditional thermostat, your house cannot predict the weather and it has no data from previous uses to predict how your house will function. Traditional thermostats simply use basic temperature sensors to flip between on and off. But what if your house could sync with the local weather, learn about your habits, and prevent you from overusing heat and AC? Smart thermostats can do that. And since climate control ends up being a huge chunk of the energy that your home uses, a better climate control system can have a huge impact on your total energy use.
Additionally, since smart thermostats learn your habits and the local weather, you can actually help your smart thermostat learn to save money. For example, you can use fans in the summer and warmer clothing in the winter to raise and lower the temperatures that you’re comfortable sitting in. Then, you’ll use your thermostat less, and in turn your thermostat will begin to predict that you don’t want to use it as much!
Run Appliances on a Smart Schedule
When you’re on the grid, major energy appliances like dishwashers and washing machines are a huge drain on the energy available to your city. If you want to improve the energy consumption and green energy capabilities of your city, you can run these appliances during non-peak times to save a bit of money and energy. Most smart devices like dishwashers and washing machines have the capabilities to set up smart routines which run during off-hours. You’ll be kind to your home, but you’ll also be kind to the whole grid!
Smart Window Treatments
Lots of heat is gained or lost through your window treatments. The sunlight can begin to bake your house in the summer, or can help warm it up in the winter. Running around and managing every set of blinds and every shade simply doesn’t seem practical! In fact, if you’re gone most of the day, it’s actually impossible.
But smart window coverings can be programmed to respond to the environment so that you save money on electricity and heating. Snag blinds that automatically lower over sunny windows in the summer, and automatically allow sunlight in during the winter. It’s the small motions that can make that 1-2 degree difference which saves money on the thermostat.
Smart Energy Apps
You can’t improve what you aren’t aware of! Energy apps that show you how your home uses energy are super helpful for figuring out how you can save energy and improve your entire routine. The Department of Energy has an app, “Home Energy Saver,” which might be a great place to start. Use the apps to figure out how to improve the energy consumption habits that you’ve developed unintentionally over time!