Winter is coming. The cold days and freezing nights are about to begin. And when winter does come, you’ll spend more money on heating and more time trying to stay warm.
Winter is Coming pic.twitter.com/gFSyEYrbG6
— spexy (@spexyone) August 29, 2016
It doesn’t have to be like that. Your home doesn’t have to be cold and inefficient. There are smart ways to stay warm in your own home or apartment and smarter ways to cut down on heating costs. Read to find out more!
To keep warm and cut down costs, you’ll need to buy reputable smart home products and integrate them with smart home services. By doing so, you’ll cut down on your heating bills and spend more time on leisurely activities, like enjoying those winter Netflix movies or browsing the internet.
One of the best ways to stay warm and cut down on costs is by purchasing a Nest Thermostat, which automatically adjusts the temperature in your home and controls your hot water tank. What’s great about this product, if you haven’t already purchased one, is that it’s easy to use and easy to configure.
It acts as a bridge between your other smart home devices and the cloud and is a staple for smart home users.
IFTTT and Google can also be integrated with Nest to better automate your home.
With Google, you can control Nest with your voice and automatically set the right temperature at the right time before you arrive home. With IFTTT, you can connect with other apps and products to keep your home more energy efficient and comfortable. Even Amazon Alexa gives you more options to easily interact with your thermostat.
Nest is one tool that can really help you develop your smart home, and essentially stay warmer during those cold winter months.
Tip — Check out a dozen more ways to use Nest with different services.
Smart Water Heater ($150)
Speaking of hot water, Aquanta has developed a smart water gadget to cut down on your energy costs. How so? By using a sensor to measure the change inside your water heater. The company says the gadget will “heat water when you need it, and save money when you don’t.”
Apparently, the gadget can attach to nearly 85 percent of US hot water tanks and learns user patterns, like when you shower or wash your clothes. How much energy will you save? That remains a valid question, as the product still hasn’t been launched. But with nearly 18 percent of your household energy costs spent on heating water, according to the US Department of Energy, it could be a wise investment.
Lutron Serena Smart Shades ($350)
Lutron’s Serena Shades are also worth considering, if you can afford them. The company says the smart blinds “allow insulation while controlling daylight in style.” They’re also easy to use and easy to install.
However, users have noted that they’re spotty when integrated with Siri and require an expensive Smart Bridge to interact with other services. And at $350, they might be too expensive for most people.
If you do have the money, Serena Shades will do the trick.
If your house still feels cold and dry, you might want to consider a smart humidifier to moisturize your home and make it feel warmer.
WeMo’s smart humidifier is great for a number of reasons. It can be managed from your smart phone, and allows you to change the preferred humidity level to high when at home or low when away. The humidifier also senses when the water level is low and will send an update to your phone, so you don’t have to constantly check, which means less work for you. There’s even a WeMo humidifier channel on IFTTT, which can be used with the Nest thermostat for better climate control.
Smart fans are also a good option to push down hot air that has collected near the ceiling, which warms the room and essentially cuts on heating costs.
What makes Haiku’s fan different is that it’s known as the world’s first smart fan, and includes 39 LEDs, a home app, motion sensors, a Wi-Fi chip, and a microprocessor. According to the company, the fan changes “according to its environment and your personal preferences,” bringing you “a more comfortable, convenient, and efficient home.”
Escea Smart Fireplace ($3,500)
And for ultimate comfort, an inside fireplace is also worth considering.
The Escea fireplace is perfect for added warmth during those especially cold nights. It can be controlled from your Android or iOS smart phone, can be installed almost anywhere in your home, runs silently, and “uses a mere third of the energy of an equivalent sized open fire.”
Bonus: Smart Sunn Lights ($350)
While this product won’t actually warm you or your house, it’ll definitely have you feeling better about winter. The smart LED light fixture matches the sun’s time and location and is a fraction of the cost of other high-end light fixtures.
Your smart lights (Hue, LIFX, Homekit, and Sunn Lights), when connected with the light fixture, will automatically change color and brightness according to where the sun is located, giving you a better night’s sleep and more alertness during the day, which you can see in the video below.
Your Warm Smart Home
A perfect smart home means that you’re comfortable at all times, even when it’s freezing outside. It also means controlling your humidifier, smart shades, thermostat, or any other appliance from the convenience of your phone. Not only that, but a perfect smart home also means saving on energy costs.
There are a number of products that can turn your home into a smart warm home. Just be sure to read more Smart Home articles to find out more!
What smart home products do you use during the winter? Have they helped you stay warm? Tell us your thoughts in the comment section below.