Ways to reduce your Home Electrical Energy Usage with Smart Lighting
Home lighting has essential use and aesthetic applications. We use lighting to illuminate our homes at night, to focus a point, for security purposes, and to create a cozy environment for comfortability.
As a country today, research shows that Americans consumes a significant amount of power to illuminate their homes, which always amount to about 91 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) a year, this is analysis provided by Energy Information Administration U.S. In all homes electricity bill Lighting accounts for approximately 6% of a home’s energy consumption per month.
The invention of the smart home system introduced into the home electrical system has made it possible to take full control of home lighting while reducing energy wastage through lighting. Individual lighting in the house can be controlled with smart bulbs, but they aren’t an efficient solution for everyone, especially homeowners who want to automate their energy-saving smart lighting with a smart home assistant. Fortunately, there are other options.
There are Energy-efficient timers, dimmers, and energy-saving light switches that can be programmed through a smart hub or through a home energy control system.
What you can do to save electric energy while using light in your home?
You can save electricity usage by using;
- Smart light switches
- Smart dimmers switches
- Smart time switches
- Smart plugs, and
- Motion sensors.
1. A smart light switch can be used to control lights with your voice or smartphone.
One easy way to control home light usage and save energy is by the use of a smart light switch. Once installed, it is possible to either use a smartphone app. or a smart hub to control the hard-wired energy-saving light switch. Toggling the hard-wired smart light switches can even be done using voice control as well. But how really does this smart switch save energy when they are used.
How smart light switches save electric energy when they are used in the house?
Most energy-saving light switch comes with its own programmed smartphone app. turning of light ON and OFF from any location is possible once this app is installed on your phone, after installing the smart switch. You don’t have to worry whether you left your light on when you left the house, what you need to do if you are not sure the light is off is to check the app. In your phone.
Programmable light switches are the best, it enables you to set up a schedule, switching lights ON and OFF automatically at particular periods of the day. Apart from this being convenient to you, it automatic settings also ensure the bulb won’t waste energy when there’s no one around to use light, it turns the light off. Are you worried about knowing the right smart light switch to choose from? Below are a few tips to do that.
How to choose the right smart light switch for your lighting system?
A single-pole smart switch: normally a light fixture from a single physical location is wired using a single-pole smart switch. Often this type of switch is used in bedrooms and home offices, etc. the most common type of switch used in the home wiring electrical system is the single-pole light switches. Though it can also be used to control more than one light fixture if the light is all for one function like the security light, paths light, etc.
A two-way, three-way, and four-way smart switch: when multiple locations are used to enter or exit a larger room two, three or four-way switches can be used to control a single light fixture from multiple locations used in entering and leaving the room. In such cases, you don’t need to change all the switches to smart switches. Using a smart switch to replacing one of the switches is usually enough.
There are also Plug-in smart switches, a lamp such as a Free-standing floor and table lamps are rarely wired directly into your home electrical system. Instead, an outlet is made in which the can be plugged into. Plug-in light switches are the best light switch for such light because they allow you to control the light at the outlet.
2. Installing smart dimmers switches to light your home with less electricity.
Another easy way to save electricity is with Smart dimmer switches. Just Like smart light switches, it is possible and easy to pair smart dimmers with smart home assistants, and you can program and also controlled the light simply by speaking.
How exactly do smart dimmers switches save electric energy?
In a simple term not going too technical, dimmers switches are used to vary or adjust the amount of voltage traveling through the switch circuit. Higher voltage makes a light brighter. Varying the dimmer switch lowers the voltage thus reduces the amount of power reaching the light bulb, so the bulb draws less energy and produces less light thereby saving energy. Though they are a dimmer switch that is compatible with each light bulb.
What types of electric bulbs do dimmer switch work with then?
As mention earlier, depending on the type of bulb, All light bulbs can technically be dimmed.
Choosing a smart dimmer switch depends on several factors. One factor is the number of switches controlling the light, another is the type of dimmer control you prefer, and finally the type of light bulb used in the fixture which gives insight to the wattage and the making of the bulb.
Can all light bulbs be dimmed using a dimmer switch?
Technically, yes is the answer, it is possible to dim all light bulbs, though there are several types of bulbs that don’t pair well with dimmer switches. There are four most common types of light bulbs which are well suited for use with dimmer switches. But there is a need to choose carefully, as the amount of energy consumption by each type of bulb varies significantly.
Types of bulbs that can be used with dimmer switch:
CFLs (Compact fluorescent light) bulbs; though this type of bulb is energy efficient. If you are using them, and you want to use a dimmer switch to control them, however, you’ll need to use a compatible smart dimmer CFLs switch. When dimmer switch is used with some CFLs the bulb flash or flicker, this shows that such CFLs were not designed to be used with dimmers.
Most non-compatible CFLs always have “not for use with dimmers” marked on the bulb or packaging. To obtain the best result when using a dimmer switch which is compatible with CFLs is good to use dimmer from the same manufacturer of the CFLs.
LEDs (Light-emitting diode) bulbs; these are the best bulbs for use with dimmer switches, they work perfectly fine with this type of bulb. Though this type of bulb is the most energy-efficient bulb. Using dimmer switch with it, you are reducing your energy consumption in lighting to almost 3% of your electric energy usage per month.
READ ALSO; WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT LEDs BULB
Halogen bulbs: this type of bulb consumes much energy, so, when connected to dimmer switches, halogen bulbs energy consumption is reduced up to 20% less energy than when they’re not dimmed.
However, there is a great downside: using a dimmer switch to Dimmed halogen bulbs is still a less efficient way of saving energy, which potentially contradicts any benefits of using the dimmer switch. Instead of using a halogen bulb and dimmer, most homeowners prefer replacing the halogen with a simple lower-wattage bulb.
Incandescent bulbs; dimmer switch can be used with incandescent bulbs, but there is no much energy saving achieved with it because Dimming a 60-watt incandescent bulb to 40 watts actually requires more energy than simply replacing the bulb with a 40-watt bulb.
So with a dimmer switch, you can tremendously reduce your energy consumption and save more money for other things, all depending on the type of bulb you used with it.
3. Installing motion sensors to automatically turn on and off lights when you enter or leave the room.
In saving electric energy when it comes to lighting, Motion sensors can also be used. Smart motion detectors are included in Most of the best light switches, which can send notifications to smart home hubs when lights switch on. This feature not only saves your energy usage it also increases your home security, as you can program your smart home assistant to send alerts to your smartphone should motion detectors register suspicious activity when you’re out from home.
How do smart motion sensors save energy when used with light?
Smart Motion sensor lights and light switches save electric energy by automatically switching off lighting in rooms or places where no activity is detected. Many can be program to only trigger lights in response to human activity only so the family pet either cat or dog won’t be turning on lights as she or he moves through the house.
Where can a smart motion sensor be placed in homes?
They can be installed at a location in the house where light is often left ON. Motion-sensing light switches offer the most energy savings experience when used in such locations.
The most appropriate places to use motion detectors:
- Children’s rooms
- Guest rooms
- Outside lights
In high traffic areas like the kitchen, living rooms, lobby, etc. Motion detectors are less useful in such areas. Lights in these locations tend to be left on for a longer period.
4. Install energy-efficient timers to turn lights off automatically.
Anything that is not wired into your home electrical system, Even the best light switches can’t control lights that aren’t wired into your home’s electrical system. If you want to regulate when the table and floor lamps switch on and off, and energy-efficient timer can be used instead.
How smart timers save energy?
Energy-efficient timers are fixed in-between a wall outlet and plug and can be programmed to turn off the plugged-in item at a specific time. This switch is also known as timer switches, smart energy-efficient timers are often used for multiple things, though they are most commonly used to turn off devices and lights that have been left on. Turning off light at a predetermined time can also be done by the use of a timer, such as before arriving home from work.
How to use energy-efficient timer switches around your home?
Apart from turning off light that was kept on, timers can also be used for security purposes. It can be programmed to turn light on and off in an empty house which can scare potential burglars. Some of the timers even have randomized settings which would make anyone watching the house from outside to be confused if it actually the occupant that is in, and can’t judge to know when there are out or in.
Energy-efficient timers can be used for outdoor applications as well. The timer can be program to turn of light on a particular schedule, so lights can only be ON when there are needed, and outdoor timer switches are often used to regulate holiday or patio lights.
When choosing timer switch ensure to choose timer switches designed for outdoor use, because if an indoor timer is used for outdoor purposes, it might not be able to resist the harsh weather and may get damaged very easily. There are timers made for indoor, there are those made for outdoor. So check out when you are getting yours.
What are the things Energy-efficient timers can be used to control apart from lighting?
Hot tubs and pool filters
Small appliances (computers, radios, flatirons, etc.)
5. Installing smart plug to enable you Turn light into a smart device
an image of a smart plugEven if you don’t have a smart assistant or hub, Smart plugs offer an easy beginning to smart home devices, one of the common use of smart plug is Turning a floor or table lamp into a smart device by Simply plug in the smart plug into an outlet, and then plug the lamp into the smart plug. Which you can use your phone to control the plug thus controlling what was plugged on it.
How do smart plugs save electric energy?
When Smart plugs are installed in a particular location in the house it controls when and how connected appliances to it use power, enabling you to optimize appliance use and save energy usage.
App in your phone controls the smart plug after installing it and installing the app on your smartphone too. So you can set timers for appliance use through the app, control devices by turning them on and off from anywhere, and even view how much energy the plugin appliance is consuming.
How can smart plugs be used around your home?
By linking your most often used lights to a smart plug, you can control the energy consumption by such light. Other common applications for smart plugs include using it to monitoring the energy usage of appliances, switching on coffee pots at specific times, and regulating power flow to appliances that would otherwise continue to use power when not needed, such as gaming consoles and televisions.
The most efficient light switches, smart plugs, timers and motion detectors all offer energy-saving strategies for smart homes and making you enjoy the electricity in your house, and having rest of mind knowing that you won’t pay for electricity bill on the energy that was wasted rather you are paying for the very quantity you used.
So Combining smart lighting controls with LED or CFL bulbs further increase your energy savings tremendously. As smart light is gradually becoming a standard, home energy management systems increase, enabling homeowners to take full control of how much energy their appliances, lighting, and devices consumes while improving their quality of life and home security.
Scrutinizing your habits and home helps determine which smart devices are best suited to your lifestyle. So do well to check
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