Ways Your Smart Home Can Save You Money
Posted by Janine Lam on
One of the biggest lures of investing in smart home devices is that they can save you money. While smart home devices may seem like a pricey upfront expenditure, they can save you money in the long run making them a worthwhile investment.
Managing Energy Consumption
A typical North American household has over 50 electrical devices and appliances ranging from major appliances such as refrigerators, washing, and drying machines to small devices such as computers, hairdryers, and toasters.
Every electrical device contributes to your utility bill, so understanding your household energy consumption and which devices use the most energy can help you manage your energy usage more efficiently.
Some smart home devices provide energy consumption reports to help you understand which appliances consume the most energy and how much it is costing you. The Aeotec Smart Switch 6 Smart Plug actually has an LED ring that changes color to visually communicate how much electricity is being used.
Turning off Idle Devices
Did you know that devices that are “off” or in standby or sleep mode still consume energy? Actually, it is estimated that up to 50 devices and appliances in a typical household can be drawing power all the time, even when they appear to be off and can account for around 3 to 10 percent of household electricity use.
Some of the biggest users of standby power are televisions, cordless telephones, office equipment, and devices with continuous digital displays (i.e. microwave ovens). Though some devices draw more power in standby mode than others, it all adds up and the cumulative total is significant.
Smart home devices, namely smart plugs, can alleviate this problem by allowing you to control your electrical appliances and turn them off completely, so they aren't in standby mode and drawing power when they're not in use. Some smart plugs also allow you to set schedules to automatically turn the device or appliance on or off depending on your routine. We recommend using a smart power strip to group appliances and make managing your energy consumption even easier.
Turning off Lighting when not in use
Lighting can account for up to 12% of your household electricity use. The small act of accidentally leaving your lights on can accumulate to have a significant impact on your household energy consumption, and given that 51% of people admit to accidentally leaving the lights on at least once a week can mean big potential for energy savings.
Smart lighting allows you to remotely control your lighting from anywhere, anytime on your smartphone meaning you can always check if you left the lights on even after you've left the house or schedule your lights to switch on just before you arrive home so they're not left on all day. Some smart lighting uses motion sensors to detect if anyone is in the room and will automatically turn on or off if motion is detected. Not only is this a great way to ensure that your lights aren't left on when you've exited a room, it also means that your lights will automatically turn on when you enter a room!
Lowering the Heat
You know winter is here when your utility bill spikes, so you know how much your heating can impact your utility bill and ultimately your wallet. It is estimated that setting back your thermostat at least 10 degrees for eight hours a day can save you up to 10 percent on your energy costs every year.
With the potential energy savings, why keep the house heated when no one is home? However, it seems like a hassle to remember to turn down your thermostat before you leave for work and turn up your thermostat when you arrive home and wait for the room to reach a comfortable temperature.
Smart thermostats take this onus task off your hands as many are programmable and can set the heating and cooling cycles according to your schedule and preferences. Some smart thermostats even have geofencing that uses your smartphone's location to determine your proximity from home and adjusts the temperature to save money or provide comfort for your arrival.
For example, when you leave for work and exit the geofencing perimeter, your smart thermostat will automatically detect this and operate on "away" mode and lower the temperature to save energy. When you return from work and enter the geofencing perimeter, your smart thermostat will detect this and switch to "home" mode and increase the temperature, ensuring your home is at the perfect temperature when you arrive home.