Chances are, you’re spending more time at home right now, and that means your electricity meter is putting in some overtime. Now’s a great time to look at a few simple ways to conserve energy.
We’ll skip washing dishes by hand and hanging wet laundry outside on a line this week. Of course, those are always good options to cut energy costs, too. But today’s minds have come up with lots of great devices that can make a noticeable difference in your energy consumption. And maybe you haven’t heard about them, so let’s look at a few.
An Eye for Energy
When you want to cut energy costs, you’ll have to know where you’re using it most. An energy monitoring system can help. Devices such as Sense can show you which appliances are using the most power and when. Sense tracks usage by day, week, month and billing cycle, so you’ll get a complete picture of where you can save. It’s relatively easy to install, meaning you can do it without calling in a professional. And because it’s built with smart technology, you can monitor energy use from anywhere with your phone.
Start With a Strip
You might be surprised how much money some of your devices, sometimes called energy vampires, are sucking out of your wallet or pocketbook. Video game consoles, phone chargers and coffee makers—anything connected by a wall wart or brick or that has a standby light or clock—will keep consuming energy, even when they’re not being used. Some estimates suggest that energy vampires can account for 20% of your power bill.
You can help the situation by unplugging devices you don’t use on a regular basis. Or better yet, consider getting a smart power strip. They’re able to detect when a device is in standby mode and then cut the flow of power to help you conserve electricity.
Fine Tune Those Temps
Home heating and cooling make up the biggest energy expense in the U.S.—about 47% of the average homeowner’s bill. Luckily, we’ve got gadgets like the Google Nest Learning Thermostat to help take up the slack. The Nest Thermostat learns the temperatures you like, then programs itself to help you save up to 10% on heating and 15% on cooling. And because it’s a smart device, you can control it from anywhere with your phone, laptop or tablet, even when you’re on the go.
Automate Your Lights
Maybe you’re good at turning lights off whenever you leave a room, but that doesn’t mean everyone in your household is. So, if you’re tired of constantly reminding others to flip the switch, consider motion-detecting smart lights. They’ll save you a bundle on your energy costs.
You’re halfway there if you’ve already go smart light bulbs. You’ll just need a compatible sensor for each living space you want to control. And if you don’t have smart bulbs, you can purchase complete kits with bulbs, sensors and everything you’ll need to get started. The sensors detect whenever some leaves (or enters) a room, ending your duties with the light police.
If that’s too extreme for you, consider purchasing smart bulbs by themselves. You’ll be able to control them from anywhere with your phone, whether you’re out on the town or just relaxing on your couch.
We hope these ideas help you cut costs. Saving energy is good for your bank account, and it’s good for the environment.