Living expenses are already quite expensive in Britain, but during the winter, it gets even pricier. Open Access Government presented a study that showed that 4.4% of UK salaries are spent on gas and electric bills a year. Could turning your home into a smart one be the answer? A smart home, which Forbes defines as one that uses one or more computers to control basic functions automatically and remotely, not only helps make everything easier for a homeowner, it also makes home maintenance more cost-efficient. Here are five ways technology can help you save money this winter:
Lights that turn on only when you need them
Making the switch to LED lighting already saves you money—even if the installation costs a lot at first. LED light bulbs use a fraction of the energy that incandescent bulbs consume, which means you save money on electricity during winter.
You save even more if you have a connected home. You can install dimmers that reduce energy usage by 50% or use motion sensors so that no lights are left on when no one is in a particular room. Meanwhile, certain Apps allow you to turn your lights on and off wherever you are—this comes in handy if you hate coming home to a dark house, or if you can’t remember if you left a light on after leaving.
Home repairs can be detected faster
Nothing wastes your money more than home leaks and freezes that you are not aware of. Frozen pipes and faucet leaks can cost you a lot, but if you can detect the problem early, you can prevent irreparable (and expensive) damage. According to a Lifewire list, one of the easiest-to-use water leak and freeze detectors is Honeywell. It connects directly to your Wi-Fi and sends alerts to an app whenever it detects any leaks.
Your health can be improved
Health is wealth, as the old saying goes, and if you’re ill through the winter, you won’t enjoy the festivities. Why not get a smart humidifier? The hot air in your home can lead to dry skin and other illnesses, while a good humidifier like Dyson Pure Hot+Cool Link can automatically monitor and improve the air quality in your home. You can also get Blueair Sense+, which can analyse indoor air quality and remove impurities.
Cooling and heating can be easily controlled
Smart thermostats are a great investment because they can save you a lot of money and energy in the long run, especially since nearly half of a home’s energy costs go on the heating during the winter. Get a smart thermostat that you can program to adapt to the season and your lifestyle. The sensor technology will also allow you to effectively control the temperature of a room when no one is in it. One great example is the Nest Learning Thermostat, which can recognise your habits and adjust the temperature automatically—all you need is a good and stable internet connection. Screwfix on their smart heating controls page explains how a Wi-Fi enabled device allows you to control your home’s temperature from a smart device. This allows you to have some control over the temperature when you are out as you do when you are at home. Your smartphone can become your home’s central command centre.
Insulate your home better
Engineers and developers are in a race to find ways to turn “super windows” into “smart windows”—ones that can help insulate your home at a touch of a button or through a voice command.
Apart from smart windows, you can also install automated window treatments and sync your blinds with your home’s lighting system to maximise natural lighting during the daytime. You can effectively heat your home for free. This can help promote a healthier home environment so you have a happier lifestyle.