Did you know your smartphone can be a thermostat?
Energy cost is one of the biggest monthly expenses for American households. The first step to lower monthly bills is measuring energy consumption
– but in the season of food, family and festivals, who has the time to track how long the lights are on?
Save energy without wasting time by using smartphone apps that not only monitor your energy use, but also help you shop for energy-efficient products and power off your appliances. It’s energy efficiency at your fingertips!
1. One-Stop Lighting Shop
Holiday shopping for energy-efficient lighting? The Light Bulb Finder helps you browse for the best light bulbs to fit your fixtures and preferences. It also places your order, and calculates savings and payback period from replacing your current light bulbs.
2. Improve Fuel Efficiency
Did you know that speeding, rapid acceleration and rapid breaking can reduce your gas mileage by one-third? To become a more fuel-efficient driver, install greenMeter and position it as you would a GPS. The app’s sensors record your speed and changes in acceleration to tell you if you are driving efficiently.
3. Slay the Vampire
“Vampire energy” – the electricity consumed by an appliance when it is turned off but plugged in – accounts for 10% of an average home’s electricity use. To calculate how much electricity you may be wasting in each room of your home, check out the iGo Vampire Power Calculator
. Keep in mind that the app does not take appliance age or model into account.
4. Make Your Smartphone Even Smarter
Cut down on how often you need to charge your phone with iamgreen’s Battery Saver. This app gives you one screen from which you can adjust many battery-draining settings, such as unnecessarily bright screens and unneeded Wi-Fi. It also includes an energy quiz, offers tips on saving energy and plants a tree with each purchase.
5. Coming Soon: Show Off Your Energy-Efficient Profile on Facebook
OPower and the Natural Resources Defense Council are working to launch a Facebook app designed to stir online conversation about energy use. With this social energy app, Facebook friends compete to use less energy and hold each other accountable for their energy consumption goals.
Apps for Thermostats
- Nest is a popular smart thermostat that has excellent video instructions on how to install it and control temperature. If you have a Nest thermostat, download the Nest app from Apple.
- Like Nest, Ecobee thermostats come with an app that lets you control your home’s temperature from your phone. If you have an Ecobee thermostat, download the app from Apple or Android.
Find the links for app downloads and more info at the Alliance to Save Energy website.