Home Green Homes Guide Saving energy and money the smart way with home automation

Saving energy and money the smart way with home automation

by DrPrem Jagyasi

Over time, with increase in number of home automation gadgets making to the fore, home automation technology has steadily become synonymous with the word sustainability. In addition to helping reduce carbon footprints, home automation also helps bring security and comfort to home management.

Owing to its benefits, home automation is the next big thing. By setting up a connected system, homeowners are now able to optimize the energy efficiency, monitor cooling costs, and even keep tap on the home’s lighting and security.

How automation saves energy 

African man looking up and touching light bulb

With home automation one can really forget thinking about energy wastage at home. By being away for the house, you can switch off the lights, appliances and even keep tap on the home’s security. By switching on the coming home mode on the connected device’s dedicated app, you can get the house to be lit up or heated/cooled before you enter.

  • Home automation and lighting

Recessed Lighting 2

How many times have you left home only to wonder all the way to the office if you switched off the lights or turned off the coffee maker. It occurs to me that all of us have been through this situation. I have at times returned home from the bus stop to check the lights and AC. On the flip side, it is fun to have the home automated.

Even if you have left something on, you can switch it off from anywhere using your phone or tablet and motion sensors integrated in the lighting system. It’s even fun returning home too. You can instruct the lights to be switched on before you arrive or the air conditioner to be turned on so that the house is welcoming to you the moment you enter.

  • Home automation and appliances

automate your home (13)

Motion sensors installed can help make managing the energy consumption of the appliances pretty handy. As part of the automated system, the motion sensors allow the appliances to be controlled from just about anywhere with simple commands from the smartphone.

  • Home automation and heat and cooling efficiency
Hands holding traditional and energy efficent lightbulbs

Hands holding traditional and energy efficent lightbulbs

It is worth noting that largest portion of your home energy bills is due to the heating and cooling costs. Since, home automation ensures appliances don’t consume electricity unnecessarily; the heating and cooling systems are also taken care of. The systems come with programmable thermostats, which allow users to control the home temperatures even when away from home. You can set temperatures easily, or even turn the radiator or your air conditioner on well before entering the house.

Best products for home automation

  • Digi XBee Smart Meter

Digi XBee Smart Meter

The interesting Digi XBee smart meter is what the name suggests. The little device plugs into any outlet and turns the ordinary thing into a smart outlet. Using the smart meter, you can now monitor and control any device you plug into the outlet. Digi XBee has a built-in mounting tab to attach to any wall socket and it is priced at $84.

  • Elgato Eve

Elgato Eve

In addition to being an energy monitoring system, the Elgato Eve uses Bluetooth and other embedded sensors toprovide you information on the home’s air quality, air pressure, water consumption, temperature, humidity etc. Courtesy a dedicated app the system is easy to install and use. The Eve iOS app works with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch and the Elgato Eve cost $80.

  • Nest Learning Thermostat

Nest Learning Thermostat

The finest thermostat on the market, the Nest Learning Thermostat is as the name says a self-learning device. It keeps track of your heating habits and maintains the pattern thereafter. The Nest sells for $200 plus.

By incorporating smart home technology into the current or new home appliances, it has become easier than ever to reduce energy consumption at home.