No one can ignore the harmful effects of climate change and it’s everyone’s responsibility to do their bit for the planet. If you’ve embraced smart home technology then congratulations; you’re already well on your way to living more sustainably.
If you’re wondering how your smart home can help you make more eco-friendly choices every day, keep reading to find out how smart technology supports greener choices.
One of the hardest things about living a greener lifestyle is the dedication and know-how it requires. We all lead busy lives and sometimes sustainability slips to the bottom of the priority list. But if we want our children and grandchildren to enjoy all the benefits of nature, then it’s important to make more environmentally-conscious decisions today.
That’s where smart home technology can help. Once set up, most features like thermostats and lighting become automated, allowing you to go green without much effort. From smart fridges and kettles to lighting controlled by voice, it’s surprisingly quick and easy to set-up an array of gadgets that make life easier. Once you realise how much ease smart tech brings to your life it becomes even easier to embrace the sustainable approach!
With 57% of UK homes owning at least one smart device there’s already hope for less energy waste for future generations. What’s more, the simplicity of many smart solutions means every homeowner can implement them in an effort to become more sustainable.
Keen to start living more sustainably with smart technology? Take a look at your current lifestyle first and assess where you could make positive changes.
Key areas to consider are:
- Lighting. 6.5 million Brits forget to turn off the lights when they leave a room, wasting money and energy.
- Water consumption. Did you know that 3 billion litres of fresh, clean water is wasted every day in the UK? Mostly the issue comes from leaky pipes, but old and inefficient dishwashers and washing machines are also to blame.
- Heating. It probably comes as no surprise that inefficient heating systems have one of the biggest negative impacts on the environment and your wallet.
- Appliances. Old, faulty, or outdated appliances can lead to homeowners using more energy than they need, skyrocketing their carbon emissions and energy bills.
Living a more sustainable lifestyle is formed by habit, and the right smart technology will make those habits automatic. You’ll be delighted at how easy it is to reduce your carbon footprint with a few simple changes.
Not all technology is created equal. If you’re reading this article you probably want to know which smart devices are worth the investment and which areas of your home you’d like to see the biggest reduction in carbon emissions. Fortunately, there’s a wealth of options to suit a range of budgets.
Controlling the temperature of our homes requires the most energy. That’s why smart thermostats go a long way towards reducing carbon emissions in the home. Smart thermostats work by providing the right amount of heating and cooling necessary for your home. You can control them remotely via your smartphone and track how much energy you’re consuming. Remote control not only lets you cosy up the house before you arrive, it’s handy for switching the heating off if you forgot on your way out the door. In the height of summer it can be easy to open a window and forget to switch the air conditioning off, but a smart thermostat can shut down air conditioning automatically via temperature readings. Smart thermostats are such a simple way to live sustainably in regards to energy consumption — and they could save you a packet, too!
A simple switch to smart lighting makes a big difference to your carbon footprint and energy bills. Smart LED bulbs are more energy efficient than incandescent bulbs and last longer. Because they use less energy to light your home, smart bulbs contribute to less energy waste overall. If you want to go the extra mile you could opt for a truly intelligent lighting system in your home. Smart lights like Control4 let you control the light in your home via a smart device. Why is this more eco-friendly? It means that you’ll never forget to turn the lights off! Smart lights know when someone has left the room and turn off automatically. You can also control the brightness for moody lighting. Smart lights don’t generate as much heat as traditional bulbs so they use less energy, letting you enjoy the benefits of modern living without the worry of how it’s affecting the planet. At bedtime, simply switch off every light in your home by voice command or the simple tap of a button.
Like smart lights, smart plugs are another small and simple switch in the step towards a more sustainable smart home. Smart plugs can be used with smart lights or built into a hybrid lighting system to provide a convenient and holistic lighting solution. Like smart lights, smart plugs can be controlled and scheduled via an app on your phone. You don’t need to worry about accidentally forgetting to switch off hair straighteners or other appliances that pose a fire risk if left unattended. The ability to remotely switch off plugs means you don’t waste electricity either — handy for that one forgetful family member who always forgets to switch an appliance off at the wall! Smart plugs are a smart, easy way to streamline your life and reach your green-living goals.
Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems can be massive energy drains. If you run business premises then you’ll also know how much these systems can cost, too! Smart blinds are a nifty, energy-efficient way to heat or cool your home without resorting to an expensive HVAC system. Simply program the blinds to stay closed if you want to trap heat and sunlight inside the house or open the blinds remotely if it’s a sunny day to take advantage of the summer heat. This can be particularly useful in older homes that struggle to retain heat in the winter. What’s more, if there’s a glare on the TV screen coming from outside, you don’t need to move from the sofa to close them — just activate the blinds via voice command!
Nowadays, many kitchen appliances come with smart capabilities. Luckily, there are also an array of eco-friendly options. If you’re looking to replace a fridge or dishwasher, shop around for eco-friendly versions that are kinder to the planet by using less energy (and kinder to your wallet in the long run). A smart device is an efficient one. For example, eco-friendly fridges have a power saving mode that uses less energy and sets your fridge to an optimal temperature. Useful features like notifying you when you’re low on groceries is a bonus, but also a green feature; the less food we waste the lower our carbon footprint. Double check that your new fridge is HFC-free and comes with a certified official energy efficiency label.
UK households waste over 3 billion litres of water each year. Smart water systems and gadgets can be part of a smart home integration that helps with sustainable water consumption. In Scotland we’re blessed with fresh, tasty water, so let’s not waste a drop! A recent innovation has been smart taps with Wi-Fi that can self-clean pipes and collect data on water usage. Taps are also voice-activated, making it easy to shut the water on and off.
Smart water systems can monitor your water usage and recommend areas for improvement. Furthermore, a smart water system can detect leaks and contaminated water. Knowing when it’s time to fix a leaky pipe helps prevent water damage (and costly clean-up) before it happens. Smart water detectors go as far as alerting homeowners to overflowing drains, mouldy pipes, and failed appliances.
Preserving water is crucial to the health of our planet. By equipping homes with energy-efficient smart technology we’re one step closer to protecting our natural resources for future generations.
Smart technology is constantly evolving, which is a good thing for our planet’s sustainability. Saving the environment goes hand in hand with wasting less energy, and there’s a growing range of smart devices that can help you do just that. Whether it’s a smart thermostat, fridge, or water system, making small, energy-efficient changes will go a long way towards boosting your smart home’s sustainability. If you think one household won’t make a difference, researchers discovered that smart home automation saves 12.78% of original emissions.
John Ross Smart Living are trained professionals with decades of experience. Our technicians work with you to design a sustainable, smart home that suits your lifestyle and budget. We’re specialists in smart home automation and believe that the most intelligent homes are eco-friendly ones. We’ll help configure your lighting, heating system, and smart integrations so you can start living in a smarter, sustainable home today.
It’s as simple as getting in touch.