How to Build a Sustainable Smart Home
Many tech-obsessed consumers have been building smart homes for years to give them better and easier control over the products that power their lives. But a rapidly growing list of smart home products are also helping people build sustainability into their smart homes.
Sustainable tech is a critical component in the broader technology industry. An ever-increasing number of consumers seek eco-friendly tech that improves energy efficiency and creates opportunities to save on energy costs. And the home is arguably where most of those benefits can (and should) be realized.
The combination of sustainable and smart home technology has therefore created a unique opportunity for those who want a smarter home to also take advantage of a more eco-conscious home. But actually knowing how to do it in an efficient way is critical to making it happen. Read on for a look at building a sustainable smart home and the key ingredients that help it hit all the right marks.
Know your budget
When you start researching ways to improve your smart home, you’ll find a steady supply of outstanding devices at various price points. And if you’re not careful, you could quickly find yourself buying a host of devices in hopes that they’ll all help you achieve your goal.
But before you get too far ahead of yourself, know your budget and stick to it. While many smart home devices may sound great on paper, you don’t want to overspend on devices that either don’t work as well as you might hope or weren’t as useful as you expected.
Also be sure to look at online reviews for the smart home devices you’re interested in. Visit various websites to see how experts review your devices and ensure they have earned strong reviews. Those that have poor reviews aren’t worth buying.
You should also know that there are a slew of devices from lesser-known companies you shouldn’t trust. If you’re unaware of the company making the product or you’re concerned that they may not offer the same level of privacy and security in their products that you would expect, move on. Only buy from trustworthy companies committed to your safety and privacy.
Review your options
A quick search of “smart home products” reveals an endless supply of options even for the most discerning of customers. So before you build your sustainable smart home, be sure to have a game plan.
If you want a sustainable smart home, you’ll need a smart Wi-Fi thermostat that connects to your furnace and air conditioner and regulates the temperature and energy usage in the home. You should also invest in smart light bulbs that you can place around your house. Those bulbs are usually LED and energy-efficient.
No sustainable smart home would be complete without energy-efficient power strips and plugs that help you analyze and reduce your power consumption. And if you want to easily control your devices around the home, be sure to opt for a smart speaker like Acer’s Halo Smart Speaker.
Find the right products
Once you know the product categories you care about, you actually need to find the products that will work best for what you want.
Using reviews sites and following the aforementioned advice is critical, but if you want a brief rundown of some outstanding sustainable smart home products, here are some ideas:
- Smart Wi-Fi thermostat: The Ecobee Smart Thermostat is an ideal choice if you want to reduce your energy costs by up to 26% each year. It offers a smart sensor to boost comfort and an eco-friendly software mode that adjusts its temperature schedule to automatically heat and cool your home when electricity is cheapest and cleanest in your area.
- Smart light bulbs: The Philips Hue Smart Light Bulb is the industry leader in smart and efficient light bulbs for the home. The bulbs use LED to reduce energy consumption and can be easily programmed to turn on and off at the right and most energy-efficient time. The bulbs also come with full support for white and color, so you can create the ambiance you want.
- Power strips: Kasa’s Smart Wi-Fi Power Strip is a six-outlet power strip designed to reduce energy consumption. It connects to the internet wirelessly and allows you to individually track and turn on or off each receptacle. You can also control the power strip from anywhere and use its app to see energy consumption for any product plugged into the device.
- Power plugs: The Belkin Wemo Wi-Fi Smart Plug is an ideal choice for replacing the receptacles in your home. You can simply plug it in to an existing outlet and automatically control your devices from anywhere with the Wemo app. You can also schedule products plugged in to the smart plug to turn on and off at the right time to reduce energy consumption.
- Smart speaker: Acer’s Halo Smart Speaker runs on Google Assistant, ensuring it can connect to an endless supply of smart home devices that can each be controlled with voice commands. You can use the smart speaker to manage your devices and access its app to control it with ease. And since it’s designed with powerful acoustics, you can listen to your favorite music while building your sustainable home.
Analyze usage to improve performance
Once you have the devices you want and you’re now set up with your sustainable smart home, your work isn’t done. Be sure to keep track of your energy bill to see if the products you’re using are reducing energy consumption. It’s also a good idea to use some of the tracking features in products like the Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Power Strip to see which of the devices in your home are least-efficient. If you can offload those and buy an alternative, that’s always preferable.
Building a sustainable smart home is an important and critical idea if you want to use technology to improve your lifestyle. But your work is never done. Be ready to buy new products to improve energy-efficiency over time and always know how well (or poorly) you’re utilizing energy in the home. The sooner you know, the sooner you can act and build the true sustainable smart home you desire.