The Future: Now Arriving with Smart Home Technology
One of my favorite shows growing up was The Jetsons. I’m sure many of you will agree, the ability to walk through a machine and be fully washed and dressed was a pretty cool concept. While that morning-routine machine has yet to come to realization, we may be closer to the Jetsons’ technology than we think as Smart Home technology continues to expand and innovate.
Smart Home technology can include the automatic operation of heating and air conditioning - fairly standard in homes today - but with advances in technology, a Smart Home is much more than a programmed thermostat. You can now control lighting, temperature and music from another room, and even unlock your front door as you approach so you don’t have to drop all your grocery bags to fumble for your keys. The technology goes even further with smart appliances such as a refrigerator that’s being developed to create recipes based on the ingredients stored inside (think they could have it ready by the time I get home tonight?). This is all pretty neat, of course, but why is it important? Yes, you will look really cool to all your friends, but most importantly Smart Homes can help you save energy.
According to Adam Justice, founder of ConnectSense, a cloud-based home automation device, “Home automation is a simple way to shave your energy bill, since it cuts out common ‘human error’ mistakes that inflate energy bills, like leaving the lights on or running the A/C when you’re not home.”
If you’re ready to save energy (and the money that comes with it!) start with these simple solutions:
Insulate your house. Half of your heat could escape your home if it is not insulated. Seal off doors and windows you wont be using, insulate your attic, and wrap your hot water tank. You can even use curtains with a thermal backing to trap the warm air.
Program your thermostat. Heating and cooling is one of the biggest energy costs in your home. Make sure your home isn’t heating up while you’re away or when you’re tucked warm into bed at night by using a programmable thermostat.
Plug electronics into smart power strips – or simply unplug. Instead of paying for electricity to go to your TV system, or other things that use idle currents, you can unplug these every time you are done using them. Or, purchase an energy-saving surge protector that automatically turns off power when not in use.
Install motion sensors and dimmers. I always forget to turn off the lights, so this not only automatically turns lights on and off based on motion, it is convenient, too!
To learn about saving energy and money check out all the resources on the Energy Upgrade California website. Together we can not only make a difference, we can live like the Jetsons!