You’ve likely seen or were tempted to click this advertisement, or advertisements like it for home automation systems and dismissed them as either a luxury for the super rich or an expensive way to help those who keep forgetting to lock their doors before leaving for work. Whatever the application, most have yet to view these systems as necessities in their homes. That fact alone is evidenced in their current market share, which estimates that they are in only two percent of American homes. However, the reason behind this lack of presence may be due in large part to the perception that you, along with many others, may have of home automation, which is that it’s largely for convenience only. What if that perception were to change to one focused on energy efficiency?
The Problem of Excessive Energy Consumption in the U.S.
Larger homes combined with hotter weather helped to double residential HVAC use in the U.S. between 1993 and 2005. If that doesn’t serve to shock you, the fact that those numbers grew by 20 percent in the following five years might. With this increased use has come the demand to make heating and cooling products more efficient, to which the industry has responded. However, more efficient products do not guarantee optimal use.
The problem inherent with energy efficiency is a lack of intuitive controls for the end user. You can install the most efficient HVAC system on the market, yet if you have no idea how to work it or no understanding of peak energy times, then you’re unlikely to experience many of the costs savings promised in product advertising. This is what’s no doubt contributing to the trend of Americans spending more than ever on electricity, with the U.S. Energy Information Administration putting the average household cost at over $100 month.
How Home Automation Can Help
It’s in this troubling energy-use environment that home automation systems may be able to truly make significant gains. Rather than simply promoting themselves as the way to set up the proverbial “home of tomorrow,” home automation systems should instead be touting their ability to help you finally achieve optimal energy efficiency. While you may not care if there’s a robot in your house perpetually vacuuming the floors, you certainly may be concerned about lights being left on, or having your air conditioning running throughout the day for the benefit of absolutely no one. A home automation system allows you to control such elements while away, ensuring that you’re not using extra energy when it’s not needed. It also eliminates the hassle of arriving home to a hot or cold house and having to wait for an optimal temperature to be reached. By turning the HVAC system on while on your drive home, you’ll ensure a comfortable environment once you arrive.
This energy-savings potential is something that consumers like you truly value, and utility services themselves are starting to take notice. They’ve been tasked through stricter federal regulations to improve the national energy budget, and many have turned to touting home automation systems, such as those offered by Savant Systems, as the easiest way to do so. Their advertising efforts are becoming more and more focused on two things: informing of the potential savings and/or tax credits available through updating to home automation, and revealing the relatively low costs of systems strictly designed for improved energy efficiency.
The move to be more energy conscious is nothing new. However, the methods of how you can achieve the benefits of it are changing. As you are encouraged to be smarter with your energy consumption, doesn’t it make sense that the main sources from which you derive it become smarter, as well? That’s the message that’s currently being lost regarding home automation, and one that those within that industry need to direct their emphasis towards.