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Smart Home Product Guide: Energy and Efficiency

Smart Home Product Guide: Energy and Efficiency

By Jordan Maxwell

Making your home a smart home is the first step towards annual cost savings. Smart home technology has been lauded for its ability to make your home comfortable but it also helps you save money on energy costs as well. If you’ve been keeping an eye on smart home technology but haven’t been sure where to start, we’re here to help.

Last week, we broke down the benefits on comfort and convenient smart home technology products. This week, we’re going to focus on smart home technology for energy and efficiency. Whether it’s smart lighting, plugs and switches and smart thermostats, there are a number of smart home energy and efficiency products that can help you save big.

Smart Lighting

Whether it’s indoor, décor or outdoor lighting, there are a number of lighting products available that will lower your energy consumption. In a world that has fully embraced smart technology, why wouldn’t you use it to save you money? Most people choose smart lights because:

  • They’re more energy efficient than traditional lights
  • They help improve the safety and security of your home
  • They’re far more convenient than traditional lights
  • Outdoor lighting is solar-powered
  • They’re water-resistant
  • They’re easy to install and have smart sensors

With LED smart lighting, you can create custom schedules that align with your routine. Some smart lights have special features that allow you to adjust the temperature and intensity settings to mimic the conditions and patterns of natural lighting throughout a 24-hour cycle. The feature can help you regulate your sleeping and waking patterns, which can lead to a better night’s sleep for everyone in your home.

Philips Hue Bridge 2.0

Known as the mainframe behind your smart lighting system, the Philips Hue Bridge 2.0 allows you to control your devices using the Philips Hue app on your mobile device. It can handle up to 50 lights and works in tandem with Apple HomeKit, Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa and Siri. Leaving the lights on in your home is one of the quickest ways to rack up your electricity bill but with the Bridge, you can easily keep track of what is on and what is off, allowing you to flip the switch on your energy costs.

Philips HUE A19 Smart LED Light Bulb

If you’re looking to save money on energy costs, lightbulbs are a good place to start. Smart lighting allows you to control the illumination of your home using your phone, no matter where you are. Most smart lighting can offer you up to 25,000 hours of lamp life and only uses 9.5W of power. You can also control it using Apple and Android apps as long as you have a reliable wireless connection within a 30-metre range.

Smart Plugs and Switches

Smart plug technology allows you to control any electronic device that is plugged into it if you download the Kasa App — compatible with Apple and Android devices. You can schedule devices to turn off or go off at the touch of your smartphone. Smart light switches are a little more sophisticated in the way they’re installed and operated.

Before you install smart light switches, you need to understand how your home is wired. If you live in an older home with knob and tube wiring, you will have to upgrade to copper wiring before customizing your home. Likewise, if your home has aluminum wiring, you may also be hindered somewhat. Since most smart switches can get hot and are typically optimized for use with copper wiring, you should avoid installing these fixtures if you don’t have the correct wiring. When in doubt, call an electrician when you’re looking to install this or to find out what’s inside your light switch boxes.

TP-LINK Smart Wi-Fi Plug Mini

As mentioned above, the great thing about a smart plug is its ‘Away Feature’ mode that allows you to turn devices on and off at different times. You can create custom settings using the Kasa app and you can control it remotely through the TP-LINK Cloud. It’s also compatible with the Samsung SmartThings system as well as iOS and Android devices.

Wemo Wi-Fi Light Switch

The Wemo light switch allows you turn your lights on and off from anywhere. Using Wi-Fi, you can control the light switches from anywhere in your home using your mobile device. You can set the ambience when the occasion calls for it or program your lights turn off when the sun rises. The switch itself is pretty easy to install and works efficiently with other Wemo products.

Smart Thermostats

Giving you a greater level of control over the heating and cooling your home, you can download an app to control your home's temperature through the Google Play Store or Apple’s App Store. Not only can they control the temperature in your home from anywhere in the world but some models can detect leaks in your furnace or other issues affecting your system.

Google Nest E Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat

The cool thing about the Google Nest Smart Thermostat is that it uses smart learning technology to understand your schedule and heating/cooling preferences over time. It takes the data and programs itself in a way that reduces overall energy usage. It can turn down the thermostat when you're away at work and it can monitor current weather conditions to adjust the heating and cooling needs in your home.

If you have a smart phone, you can control smart home technology with ease. Not only will you save money on energy consumption but you will also make your life a lot easier. If you can send a text, you can use smart products. Consider your options and buy from Best Buy!

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