Families budget for mortgage payments, groceries, insurance, children’s tuition and so much more, leaving smaller bills for things like utilities (which are still expensive enough to seriously interrupt financial planning) by the wayside.
Even if you don’t consider your household a wasteful one, a high utility bill can still take you by surprise. The real shame is that, typically, these costs can be avoided with a little simple planning.
If you have a home automated system, it can actually help you save a lot of money by reducing your energy consumption. Check out these tips on simple ways to get started.
Time Your Lights
You probably want to keep some house lights on at night so people can find their way to the bathroom without stubbing a toe. It also makes would-be burglars aware that someone is at home and active. If you have a large house, it can be hard to remember to turn these lights off during the day and switch them on at night. Using your home automated system, you can schedule each and every light in your home to go on and off at specific times each day. That way, you won’t find that you accidentally left a light on during the day all month, hiking up your energy bill.
During the summer, you likely don’t need your air conditioner blasting during the night or early morning, before the sun has come up. But, between cleaning up after dinner and getting your kids ready for bed, you may forget to turn it off and might accidentally leave it running all night when you don’t need it. Through your home automated system, you can schedule your air conditioning to run at specific times every day, ensuring your home is cool during the hottest hours and making sure the AC turns off during more naturally temperate hours.
Know Where You’re Wasting Energy
Some home automated systems come equipped with a smart thermostat that will show you when you use the air conditioning or heater the most. Once you see that, you can come up with better, more energy-efficient solutions to controlling the climate in your home.
Use Smart Power Strips
If something is plugged in, then it is using energy. Even if your toaster, television and stereo system are not turned on, they’re sucking energy out of the power outlet. Consider installing a smart power strip that you can control from your smartphone or schedule through your home automated system. You can time these to turn off at certain hours, meaning they’ll stop delivering energy to their plugged-in appliances.
Use Motion Sensors
Some systems can be set up such that, when motion sensors detect people have left the room, they automatically turn off the television, lights and other appliances that may have been left on. Smart thermostats may turn the AC off when they detect there has been no motion in the home for a while and turn it back on at a scheduled hour.
Select Non-Peak Hours
Depending on where you live, your local power company may offer reduced rates for energy usage during off-peak hours. If you discover when those hours are, you can use your home automated system to power on certain lights only during those hours, saving you money. You can also set reminders and, if you don’t have to worry about waking the neighbors, dedicated those off-peak hours to more energy-sucking activities, like laundry, vacuuming and more. Ideally, your system can help you only run appliances during off-peak hours, so you only pay discounted usage rates.
There’s nothing worse than seeing your utility bills eating into what would have been your entertainment or food budget for the month. A home automated system can tailor your energy usage to your exact schedule, helping you save a lot of money.