7 Gadgets That Will Reduce Energy Waste AND Save You Money

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There are some things we don’t mind paying a little extra for. That extra-safe car seat for our kids, that super-delicious chocolate made from Ecuadorian cocoa, the premium gas that will help keep the car running smoothly. But there’s one thing that it makes absolutely no sense to pay over the odds for… Energy. With fluctuating energy prices and the environmental cost of energy becoming an increasingly worrisome issue we all want to save a little money and help to make the world a better place by making our homes more energy efficient, but many of us don’t realize just how easy it is.

The truth is that our homes don’t need pricey and disruptive renovations to cut energy waste. The consumer technology industry is waking up to the surge of demand for products to make our homes greener without compromising on style or ease of use. Making your home more energy (and cost) efficient needn’t be a case of installing solar panels or replacing your doors and windows. In many cases, it’s simply an issue of deploying some super cool energy efficient gadgets that will scythe down your energy bills while still keeping your home beautiful.

In this post, we’ll have a look over some of the most energy efficient, easy to use gadgets that’ll reduce your household energy waste without breaking the bank.

Light up your home with energy saving bulbs

When it comes to cost effective gadgets to help save energy and money; energy saving LED light bulbs are one of the best possible places to start. Old fashioned incandescent bulbs maybe cheap and disposable, but you’d be astonished at the amount of energy you’re wasting. Incandescent bulbs are only 10% efficient since they work by super heating a filament inside the glass, producing heat and light at a ratio of 9:1. This means that 90% of the energy produced is in the form of heat, and only 10% of that energy is used on light.That’s inefficient by anyone’s standards!

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Until recently, incandescent bulbs were far easier to come by than their money saving counterparts but the market is now chock full of LED (light emitting diode) and CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lamp) bulbs that are as energy efficient as they are beautiful and versatile! Those only familiar with the early ‘corkscrew’ design of CFL bulbs may be surprised by how much energy efficient bulbs have changed over the years. Check out Pretty Handy Girl’s top 12 energy saving bulbs for a true understanding of the style and diversity on offer.

LED lights are made hugely versatile by their small size and light weight, allowing for a huge range of designs. Some of them even incorporate bluetooth speakers for those who like a little music with their light.

Take control of your energy usage with smart plugs

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The humble wall plug has been successfully diverting power from your wall to your appliance for decades. After all these years plugs grew bored and felt like maybe they weren’t living up to their full potential. If only there was some higher calling that could enable them to do something more.

But then, those humdrum wall plugs got smart!

The integration of digital technology to our little friends now enables us to view the energy we use and keep an eye on our energy costs in real time with smart plugs. Smart plugs have been on the market for some time now with a range to suit every budget.

The Smart Future has a useful breakdown on the types of smart plugs available, including prices. While smart plugs are a great way to see and manage your energy expenditure, that’s really just the tip of the iceberg. Pairing them with a mobile app not only allows you access to your energy expenditure, you can control your plugs through the app meaning that you don’t needn’t ever have to make the arduous journey to the socket to switch your appliances on or off ever again.

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Take a shower with the “Green Warrior”

The shower is where we reinvigorate at the start of the day and where we go to unwind at the day’s end… But it’s also where we waste a whole lot of water and energy. The average American family uses a staggering 40 gallons of water per day in the shower. The water that’s wasted is ‘energy rich’ having been heated, making it doubly wasteful. To prevent excessive waste experts recommend that you shower for no more than 4 minutes. But who’s going to take a stopwatch into the shower?

That’s where the Green Warrior shower curtain comes in. This innocuous looking plastic shower curtain is covered with inflatable ‘spikes’ that will ensure that your shower stays at exactly the 4 minute mark by inflating to their full length in that time, essentially kicking your soapy butt out of there.

You can double up on your energy efficiency (and style) with a smart shower head.

Coming soon: The ‘Fitbit’ of carbon footprint management

As digital technology becomes smaller and more durable, it has precipitated a rise in wearable technology. If you’re someone who wears a fitbit to monitor your calorie consumption, heart rate, sleeping time and amount of steps taken per day then you’ll know how useful it can be in plotting your course to a new, healthier you.

That’s why UK based design firm Layer have applied this principle to energy management. As of 2015 they have been working with The Carbon Trust to create Worldbeing; a similar device to measure your energy consumption and calculate your carbon footprint.

Cut down on heat waste with SmartZone

If your home is heated by a central thermostat then you’ve probably never stopped to consider the inherent wastefulness of heating the whole house if you and your family are only using one or two rooms? But think about it! You wouldn’t have a single light switch control every bulb in the house, so why pay to heat rooms and areas of the house which are sitting there unused with just one thermostat?

Well, you need tolerate this waste no longer! SmartZone allows you to prevent this by cerating different zones throughout your home, each with its own thermostat affording you greater control over your home’s temperature, staying warm and cool where you need to without wasting money heating empty rooms.

Multiple thermostats even allows you to avoid the inherent discrepancy between the reported temperature and actual temperature that would be unavoidable with a single thermostat. In some cases that discrepancy can be up to 10 degrees. Now that’s a lot of wasted heat. Check out ZoningSupply.com for more information on creating the zoning system, that’s not only easy to use and instal but sleek and unobtrusive with a simple digital interface.

Give your radiators a boost

Your radiators radiate heat… or at least they should. The problem is that the concept of the radiator is fundamentally flawed. The fact is that only 20% of the heat produced is actually radiated. The rest is lost upwardly through convection. This is compounded by the fact that pretty much all radiators are set up against a wall. The problem with this is that more or less all  of the heat that comes off the back of them is absorbed by the supporting wall, creating even further wastage.

Radiator boosters are an inexpensive and ingeniously simple way to combat this waste by sitting atop your radiator, drawing and redirecting the hot air that is produced through convection and (that’s right) radiating it outward. They activate when the radiator’s temperature reaches an optimal temperature of 86ºF (30ºC). At this point, the booster’s fans kick in, redirecting the heat that would otherwise have been wasted, meaning that you and your family get to enjoy the added warmth rather than wasting it on the wall.

They’re an inexpensive gadget that could save you hundreds of dollars a year. No, really! In a 2009 study conducted by the UK’s Energy Saving Trust, it was revealed that users were able to turn down their thermostats by an average of 1- 3 degrees Celsius while still remaining at the desired temperature. This resulted in energy cost savings of about £140 ($220) per year. Not bad for a device that costs less than 50 cents a year to run!

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Never pay to charge your devices again, with the Freeloader

Most of us in the digital age are dependent on some form of mobile device for work, study or just  to keep us connected with the rest of the world. WHile we take them with us wherever we go, we invariably shoulder the cost of charging them up at home? Why, when they’re in direct contact with the most abundant energy source in the universe… the sun? That was the logic behind the inception of the Freeloader. It allows you to charge a range of devices in any weather due to its solar panel and multitude of attachment arms. In fact, its solar charged battery is so efficient that you can run two devices from it at once.


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