Energy is an important resource, whether it comes from burning coal, hydroelectricity, or from solar generation. Being efficient in the way we use energy not only means lower energy bills, but it also means less pressure on the national grid and the natural resources that are used to generate the electricity. Technology is helping people in homes, businesses, and industry to be more efficient with how they use energy. There are many current and upcoming examples of how technology makes saving energy easier than ever. A few of them are looked at in this article.
Smart Power Strips and Smart Plugs
When you turn off your DVD player or computer, but leave it connected to the power strip, there is still some energy being used. Printers, televisions, and all the other devices with standby lights all channel some energy towards this mode. Smart power strips are being created to cut off the power to these devices completely when they are not being used. Experts estimate that this alone could save as much as 5-10 percent from your next energy bill. Smart plugs also perform the same function for individual devices.
With modern sensor technology and connectivity, you can get a far better picture of how your home uses energy. You can control more aspects of temperature regulation and set conditions to minimize how much unnecessary energy usage happens. This is the power of the smart home. Alongside this is a whole generation of new phone apps that allow you t monitor your energy use.
A wireless energy monitor is a system you can have installed in your home to show you where energy is being consumed the most. This works with a smart meter and a mobile phone app. You can see how much electricity and gas you are consuming in the different areas of the home, and the best part about this is that the information is available in real-time. Once you have this important information, you are better informed to make decisions about how you are going to be more energy-efficient.
By having an energy monitor installed on your property, you’ll get the details of how and when you’re consuming power. The insights you’ll gain allow you to make decisions to reduce that overall usage. The next level of this kind of monitoring is using a smart socket. This gives information about the energy consumption in a specific appliance that you use in the home or office.
Advanced Window Controls
So much of the energy used in the home is to create a comfortable environment. Depending on the temperature and time of the day, this could be for heating or cooling. A team from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Pella Windows are looking at how advanced windows can be used to make the home more energy-efficient. By creating a modern window with powerful sensors and improved insulation, they are looking to maximize the sunlight to reduce energy usage. The window adjusts to the time of day, the sunlight available, and the temperature to create a comfortable home environment and impressive energy savings as well.
Better Roofing Technology
Many companies are currently looking at improved roofing technology for better energy efficiency. Many people are making using of the sun’s rays and installing solar panels on their roofs to supplement their power consumption and power their water heating. Some companies are looking at reflective roofs for better cooling. These green roofs or cool roofs could be particularly useful in warmer areas where air conditioning is kept running much of the day.