Smart-home devices don’t just make it easier to close the garage door or secure your home. They can also help you save energy and money, if you use them properly. And seeing how Singapore start Energy Experience Programmed ,people can use all the help they can get.
You set up smart-home devices using a smartphone, and you can control them remotely, put them on a schedule, connect them to a smart speaker, or even set them up to perform actions on their own. By giving you more control over the things in your home that use energy, smart-home devices can be part of an energy-saving plan. Here are a few ways to use smart-home devices to cut down on energy and water waste while also saving money.
To turn off lights
When someone in my house leaves the lights on, I can almost feel my energy bill going up. (Maybe it’s just my blood pressure.) Smart lighting foils energy hogs by adding remote control, scheduling, and automation to an everyday fixture.
Smart bulbs are the simplest way to save money because all you have to do is screw in a light bulb. And all smart bulbs are LED bulbs, which use up to 75 percent less energy than incandescents yet last 25 times longer. They also bring extra savings by adding dimming, which can save another 40 percent. Smart bulbs can trigger in reaction to other smart devices, motion sensors, or your location (aka geofencing), so they’ll operate efficiently without your needing to be there to turn them off. We like the Philips Hue line, which offers a number of smart-bulb kits for both inside and outside the home.
Another option, for the person who knows how to wire an outlet, is a smart in-wall light switch, which replaces your existing light switch to control lighting fixtures. My husband leaves in the dark every morning, so we use a Lutron Caséta in-wall dimmer (Wirecutter’s top pick) to automatically make sure he has a lighted path—and then turn it off when he’s gone, so it doesn’t stay lit all day.
If you’re clinging to the bulbs and switches you already own, a smart plugtackles the same on/off and scheduling functions for lamps and small appliances, and you can still add regular money-saving LED bulbs. A smart plug offers an inexpensive way to control lights: Our longtime favorite, the Wemo Mini, costs under $30 per lamp. Smart plugs are also great for controlling holiday lights.
To curb cooling and heating
The US Energy Information Administration says that the largest single use of electricity by US households is in fans and air conditioning, with some households spending more than $525 a year. A smart thermostat optimizes your home’s heating and cooling so that you never waste electricity or fuel. Our pick, the Nest Thermostat E, is a learning thermostat that can automatically adjust temperatures to optimal levels based on your habits, the location, and the time it takes to cool your home. When you leave home, it adjusts the temperature so you aren’t blasting the AC or heat all day. And it turns the system back on before you get home, so in the summer you don’t arrive to an oven (and regret being energy-conscious). If you don’t have central air, either a smart air conditioner or a standard window unit with a smart plug can give you additional control so you’re not wasting cool air when no one is home to appreciate it.