Gadgets are fun. Gadgets are cool. These gadgets save you money too.
By incorporating these energy-efficient gadgets into your life, you can reduce energy use and your utility bills.
Install programmable or smart thermostats.
A programmable thermostat can be set to reduce heating and cooling when you are away or asleep, potentially saving you up to $180 a year.* Take it even further with a smart thermostat, which can adjust temperatures automatically based on your behavior.
Use smart power strips.
Most of us know what a power strip is, but a smart power strip attacks vampire energy — energy sucked from your appliances even when they are turned off. By employing smart strips, you might save up to $200 a year.*
There are many types of smart power strips. They can be operated by a programmed schedule, a remote switch, or based on the status of a master device. In the latter case, a master outlet (e.g., TV or computer) controls the power of the other outlets, so when you turn off the master device, the electricity is automatically cut to all the other outlets.
Certain devices, like printers and computers, may not respond well to an abrupt power loss. For these types of devices, look for energy-saving modes.
Check out a wattmeter.
These devices are just plain fun. Plug one into your outlet, and then plug in a blender, a space heater, or any appliance to get a measure of its electricity needs. The Princeton Public Library has wattmeters available in their Library of Things.
Consider an energy monitor.
These monitors connect to your circuit breaker and display your entire home’s energy use — sometimes in surprising detail — with the ultimate goal of helping you to find ways to make your home energy and cost-efficient. It is recommended that an electrician install an energy monitor, so keep this idea in mind the next time you have an electrician visiting your home.