Do Smart Homes Save Energy?

Smart homes offer numerous exciting features. From accessing your home remotely to controlling it using voice commands, there are many reasons to add smart devices to your house.

One of the most important benefits is the amount of energy you can save with your smart home. You can use your devices to limit the amount of electricity you use each month, helping you lower your energy bills.

Use these tips to get smarter about your energy use as you take full advantage of your devices.

Are smart homes more energy efficient?

Smart homes have the potential to save hundreds of dollars on energy costs, as long as you use your devices efficiently. Increased control means you can limit your usage to the amount of power you actually need. As you’ll see below, there are endless ways to optimize your smart home’s energy use without affecting your quality of life.

How to save energy with your smart home

1. Adjust your heating and cooling schedule

Your heating and cooling system makes up the majority of your household energy usage. During the summer and winter months, when temperatures are at their most extreme, you spend excessive amounts of money just to keep your home comfortable.

Unfortunately, you often pay to heat or cool your home when no one is there to enjoy the temperature. Most people are at work or school during the hottest part of the day, so you may even be paying extra for no reason.

With a smart thermostat, you can adjust your temperature to your schedule. Keep your home at less-comfortable temperatures while it’s empty and have the thermostat kick on just before you get home. Some devices even sync with your phone. The thermostat will come on when you’re close enough to connect, ensuring your comfort from the moment you walk in.

Smart thermostats also give you complete control of your home’s temperature at any time of the day, no matter where you are. If you see that temperatures are dropping lower than you expected, you can use the mobile app to keep your home a bit warmer. This way, you can keep pipes from freezing without having to set the thermostat higher “just in case.”

Some high-tech thermostats sync with your location and habits. Without any input from you, the device will keep your home at the perfect temperature on your schedule. 

Smart plugs and fans are another way to save on heating and cooling costs. You can plug window units into your smart plugs for remote control. Smart fans can sync with your thermostat or only run when they detect motion in the room to minimize your usage.

2. Utilize smart appliances

Every time you open the fridge, whether it’s to grab something quickly or to look for snack inspiration, your fridge has to work harder to maintain its internal temperature. With a smart fridge, you can see the contents of the fridge from the outside. You will only open the fridge when you know exactly what you need, conserving energy.

Other smart appliances use a variety of features to help you cut back on energy consumption.

Set your smart washers and dryers to only run when your electricity rates are lowest. Smart dryers and dishwashers will use the exact amount of energy needed to dry your belongings. Your refrigerator will send you a text message when the door is left open.

Smart appliances also let you know as soon as something breaks or malfunctions. Normally, it might take some time to identify the issue. During this time, your appliance would have to use an increasing amount of energy to maintain its performance. Smart alerts ensure that you don’t waste any energy on your daily chores.

3. Light your home on your schedule

A home that doesn’t have any lights on at night is an attractive target for burglars. No one is home to turn the lights on, which means thieves can get in and out undetected.

To discourage burglars, many people turn the outside lights on when they leave, even if there’s still light outside. This tactic might keep thieves away, but it wastes a lot of energy.

Instead, install smart lights that you can control remotely and schedule to your preferences. If you leave before dark or won’t get home until after the sun has set, you can turn the lights on through your phone.

Additionally, you can sync your inside lights with your phone. When your smart lighting connects to your phone as you approach the home, they know to turn on. You can come home to a lit, comfortable home without using excess power.

Most smart lights offer brightness settings as well. Adjusting this setting limits the amount of energy the light uses. You can keep your home lit and your energy costs down.

4. Smart plugs

Though smart devices are definitely the future, most household appliances don’t have smart features. That said, you can use smart plugs to expand the capabilities of every device in your home.

Smart plugs can be used with any outlet in your home. Once you plug a device in, you can turn it on and off remotely. If you forget to turn an appliance off, for instance, you can use your phone to shut it down. 

These plugs also include smart scheduling, which enables you to choose which devices you want on at any given time. Rather than keep your TV, coffee pot, and chargers plugged in at all times, you can decide when these appliances should receive power. You can keep to your normal schedule, but you’ll use less energy when you’re not using your devices. Plus, a simple tap will get the electricity flowing again whenever you need it.

A smart plug will also tell you how much energy you’re using through it. You can use this information to optimize your usage and lower your electricity bill.

Smart homes aren’t the only ways to save on energy costs. Learn more in our blog.