Saving energy – and reducing energy bills in the process – isn’t just about making big changes like installing solar panels. There are plenty of simple ways you can live a greener life without doing anything more complicated than putting a plug in a socket. From smart appliances to energy tracking apps, it’s easier than ever to integrate energy-saving technologies into your lifestyle.
Here are some of the best everyday gadgets helping people go green at home:
- Smart Power Strips
Power strips remain a staple of gadget-loving families with plenty to plug in so it makes sense to upgrade to a mode like the SmartStrip LCG4. This smart strip becomes the control switch for devices with peripherals (e.g., a computer with a printer and speakers or a TV with multiple gaming systems) so powering off the main device also prompts the peripherals to power down completely. Why turn devices off? If you’re tracking your home’s energy consumption you may find you’re surprised at how much phantom power is being drawn by devices in standby mode.
- Smarter Charging Smartphone
Newer phones, such as the LG G5, feature the fastest Snapdragon mobile processors enhanced with features like Quick Charge™ 3.0 technology. With it, devices charge to 100% in far less time and more efficiently so they draw less power in the process.
- Learning Thermostats
The Nest learning thermostat has been helping people save money and be more comfortable in their homes for years, but if the price tag is off-putting there are other smart thermostats out there. The Emerson Sensi Wi-Fi thermostat isn’t as full-featured as its competitors but it’s a solid budget option for anyone who wants to save energy with precise temperature control and automatic adjustments.
- Power Usage Monitor
The Kill-a-Watt Electricity Usage Monitor shows you how much energy powered-down devices and devices in standby are still pulling as well as how much power various appliances around your home are using – along with how much it’s all costing you. Unplugging these devices when not in use can quickly add up to large energy savings.
- Always-On Off Switch
Set a device to charge and it’ll continue to draw power needlessly after it’s fully juiced unless you have an automatic kill switch like Belkin’s Conserve Socket installed. These plug-in adapters can be set to run for thirty minutes, three hours or six hours. After that, the Conserve Socket automatically shuts off the flow of power so standby electricity draw is effectively reduced to zero.
- Smarter, Smaller Space Heaters
Energy efficient space heaters can save money over a home’s integrated heating system because they can be turned on when needed and off when they’re not. For larger rooms that only need to be heated occasionally, running the compact and stylish Dr Infrared Heater Quartz + PTC is a green choice. It delivers 60% more heat than other heaters its size and warms up spaces faster so less energy is required.
- Low-Power Lighting
For energy savings, smart lighting systems equipped with low-draw LED light bulbs can’t be beat. LEDs already product light efficiently and today’s modern LED bulbs can produce just as much pleasant white light as CFLs and incandescent bulbs. When used as part of a smart lighting system like TCP’s Connected setup you can save energy automatically by setting lights to turn off automatically or remotely with an app.
It’s clear that smaller scale changes in your home can add up to a big impact when it comes to energy savings. From simple solutions like a smart power strip to larger ticket home automation gadgets like a learning thermostat, there are many ways to live a greener life with technology.