Smart home devices and the idea of a connected home is becoming increasingly popular across the globe. There are already more than 23 billion connected IoT devices (Statista), from which 7 billions are constantly connected to the Internet. What’s more, the overall number is supposed to double in the upcoming years.
Many think that the main advantages standing behind the Smart Home technology are safety, comfort, and savings. While these characteristics surely make the top of the list, that’s not all. Smart Homes can actually play a vital role in saving our planet’s environment
As people are waking up to the fact that we need to be more responsible about the way we live and more aware of how much energy we use, there’s is a burning need for reducing energy usage.
Even though conversations about climate change are often focused on government policy, in reality, there are billions of households around the globe that can contribute to bringing a positive environmental change, purely based on an alteration of the energy patterns.
One of the easiest and most effective ways to do it is by using Home Energy Management System (HEMS) as these are able to integrate all of the home devices into one programmable, highly customizable entity, they can easily enable the user to optimize his energy usage. All he needs to take over control is his smartphone with the right mobile app.
Why switching to smart technology is the right decision for every individual willing to help the environment? Here are our top three reasons.
As most people tend to forget to adjust their thermostats when they leave home, heating, and cooling take a huge toll on our environment. It is actually one of the main man-made sources of carbon emissions. The amount of wasted energy is even bigger with poorly regulated systems. Fortunately, the new, smart thermostats enable the user to take full control of his devices and minimize the waste.
As Home Energy Management Systems can be operated remotely, the user is able to regulate the temperature at home through his smartphone once he’s away. He can set up the system to be actively pumping heat or cool air only during the times that someone is in the home. If he left for work and realized that the heat is on, he can simply get onto the app and shut it off. If someone leaves a door open, a smart thermostat can shut off the air conditioning or heat automatically. And there’s more.
Smart thermostats learn quickly about the user’s preferences. They use occupancy sensors and operate heating and cooling patterns based on the feedback. With the ability to learn day-to-day schedule flexibility, the smart thermostat is a partner in making a home a comfortable and energy-efficient place.
Lighting and appliances are very similar to heating and cooling when it comes to the energy waste. It’s pretty easy to forget to turn them off when leaving home in a rush. But for a user armed with smart technology, it doesn’t matter. All he needs is his phone. Home Energy Management System does the rest and allows him not to worry so much about being forgetful. The user is in control even if he’s away; he can always monitor, manage and optimize the home appliances, wherever he is.
The lightning can be turned on and off remotely. Instead of path lights turned on all day, he can program them to be turned on just as he arrives home from work, reducing the energy use and enhancing the security. He can program smart home lighting solutions to alert him via text message when a light has been left on. Then, right from his phone, turn it off.
It’s the same with home appliances. When electronic devices are plugged in, even when powered off, they are still using tons of power. We tend to forget about it even though it means that our wallets are drained and the environment is in pain. Luckily, with smart plugs reducing the energy usage is quick and easy. This is especially valuable for devices such as irons or hair straighteners, which along with consuming plenty of electricity have the potential to be hazardous if left on for prolonged periods of time.
To take the full advantage of smart-home energy-saving strategies, a user needs to know everything about his energy patterns. The more we know, the more we can do. As Home Energy Management Systems often offer personalized insights on energy usage, the user knows exactly which appliances and devices consume the most energy and when they’re most often in use.
By harnessing HEMS, he is able to see and understand energy usage and optimize it. By being able to monitor energy consumption, the user is more likely to make energy-saving choices and thus reduce carbon emissions.
Once we understand the energy patterns, we can do even more. Many home appliances like dishwashers, washing machines, and clothes dryers often run at the same time in multiple households across an electrical grid, creating peak demands for energy at certain times of the day. Homeowners can reduce energy use by creating smart routines for washers, dryers and other appliances, scheduling appliances to run at times of day when energy demand is low.
While heating and lighting are the obvious areas where energy savings can be made, there is much more we can control and improve. It’s not quite the Jetsons yet, but as the technology is getting smarter, and more advanced every day, the new opportunities arise.
As the energy landscape changes, our homes will need to adapt accordingly to reduce our environmental impact. By building a new generation of households, equipped with HEMS solutions and a sustainable mix of power sources, we can save ourselves significant amounts of money in energy bills while reducing our carbon impact in the process.
As smart homes are good for both our wallets and for the world at large, what’s not to like?
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