With energy bills rising, the cost-of-living crisis is leading many of us to look for new ways to cut down on our usage, wherever we can. But with prices rising so quickly, can smart home technology make a significant dent in your monthly bill?
The short answer is no. There’s simply no amount of smart home tech that can shield households from the brunt of rocketing energy prices, but certain gadgets can give you a better understanding of when and where your money is being spent, meaning you can make more-informed decisions about your usage.
Smart thermostats that control your hot water and radiators make the biggest impact. These are designed to “learn” when you’re at home, when you’re out, and when you want heat or hot water, and then use that information to build a more-energy-efficient schedule and avoid heating an empty house. They can even keep an eye on the weather forecast to dial back the heating on warm days, or keep your home comfortable on cold mornings.
On the other hand, things such as LED bulbs offer very slim savings. While they’re typically between 10 and 20 per cent cheaper to run than traditional CFL bulbs, lighting accounts for a tiny fraction of your home’s overall energy usage. LED lightbulbs don’t necessarily have to be smart, but the ability to control your lights with your phone or on a schedule helps make sure you’re not wasting light when you’re not around.
Smart home tech won’t save you an enormous sum. Simply using less energy every day will have a much bigger effect on your bill than a full contingent of LED bulbs ever could. But, combined with a smart electricity meter, these smart home gadgets can make you more aware of how and when you’re using electricity, which are the biggest energy-draining culprits, and how best to change your behaviour to cut down bills.
To help you trim down your gas electricity bills as much as possible, we’ve rounded up some of the best energy-saving gadgets from our range of tried-and-tested reviews, including smart LED light bulbs, smart thermostats, smart home devices and smart speakers.