Are you sweltering in the summer heat with an AC that’s pushed to its limit? You can support your home’s cooling systems with several smart solutions like motorized shades or thermostats that manage your energy consumption while lowering your utility bills. These solutions can be controlled via Wi-Fi, so all you need is a mobile device and an app to have your home’s temperature at your fingertips. Here are Xssential’s six smart suggestions to stay cool this summer.
Smart LED Lights
Traditional incandescent bulbs emit 10% of their power consumption as light and the other 90% as heat. If these bulbs are the main type packed into your home, you may find it more difficult to keep cool. Thankfully, an LED light is a simple swap you can make. LED lights consume a lot less power (a 16W LED light generates about the same amount of light as a 120W incandescent lightbulb) and run quite a bit cooler than incandescent and compact fluorescent lights. For example, an incandescent halogen bulb was measured at 327 °F, a Philips Par38 CFL at 167 °F, and a Cree LED downlight at only 107 °F. Not only do you start saving on the energy consumed by the lights, but you generate less heat that your AC system has to cool. Automating your lights and air conditioning systems can help save more energy and make your home more comfortable.
If there’s one product we recommend above the rest, it’s a smart thermostat, a widely available product that does the bulk of the work keeping your home cool and comfortable. Whether you want to set up a schedule that matches with your family’s coming and going, allow it to self-regulate depending on the weather outside, work in sync with your home’s security system, or adjust the temperature from your phone, a smart thermostat is capable of all this and more. On days with higher humidity levels, the air feels muggy and stifling, so if you live in a more humid climate, search for a smart thermostat that can operate humidifiers and dehumidifiers.
Automated Window Shades
Filling your home with natural light has its drawbacks; your house’s temperature can rise 20 degrees when sunlight streams through your window, making your AC struggle. Window shades that effectively block out the sun will minimize heat gain, especially with a shading fabric with a low openness factor. Take it a step further and invest in automated shades that allow you to open and close your blinds with the touch of a button. You can even program them to open and close at particular times, so you can enjoy the gentle morning light and cool afternoons. Your AC will thank you.
Smart Ceiling Fan
An obvious solution to heat is to turn on your ceiling fans! Smart ceiling fans are starting to hit the market. A good ceiling fan will allow you to set your thermostat 4 degrees higher without sacrificing feeling cool. For optimal convenience, search for fans you can control through Wi-Fi. Not only can you control and schedule the run times through your mobile device, but some fans come equipped with sensory technology that knows when someone has entered or left the room. These sensors can note the temperature and humidity levels and adjust their speed accordingly.
Smart Electrical Sockets and Power Strips
Some of your favorite electronic appliances can give off heat when they’re running and even when they’re turned off but plugged into a socket. If you’ve ever noticed your media room feels a bit warmer than the rest of your home, your projector, A/V receiver, and speakers can take part of the blame. Unfortunately, the only way to battle the power usage and heat emissions from inactive electronics requires completely unplugging them, unless you have a smart electrical wall socket or power strip. When registered on your Wi-Fi network, you can “unplug” components through your smartphone. Like every smart accessory, you can program set times for particular sockets or strips to turn on and off, which can help in lowering your indoor heat and saving you from another sleepless night binging a series.
Is the outdoor heat discouraging you from enjoying a sunny day in your yard? Outdoor misting systems are a fantastic solution that keeps your home’s exterior cool. When the mist evaporates, it can create a cooling effect up to 30 degrees! Install a misting system around the edges of your patio or porch so you, your family, and your guests can stay cool no matter how hot the day seems.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the hot summer, it’s time to invest in smart home energy management solutions. Whether you know what you want or are feeling indecisive on which solutions are right for your home, give us a call today and we’ll help you prepare your home for whatever weather may come your way.