Reduce heating costs and electricity costs with Smart Home
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When the window opens, the heating is switched off. When you leave the home, all the lights go out, and so does the radio. Smart home systems help save energy. Especially in the household, where electricity is often wasted by negligence, such automatic solutions are useful. In the article we introduce the appropriate devices that you can use to save energy.
Table of Contents
Save energy with a smart home heating control
Reduce power consumption
Nobody likes to waste money, but many people do – mostly without intention or negligence – because the window is open for ventilation for a quarter of an hour, while the heating continues to boil. The TV is on standby all day, even though there is no one at home who could turn it on. Classic examples of how fast energy is wasted – and how to spend more money unnoticed than necessary. This is where smart home solutions come into play: you can save energy in the home even if you do not think about it. Thanks to intelligent networking, heating and power consumption can be limited to the necessary level.
You should know these terms
|sensor||Also referred to as a detector, transducer or probe. The sensor can detect certain physical (or chemical) properties: temperature, humidity, light, speed and the like. In the smart home they play an important role as signal generators: If a certain value is exceeded or undershot, this triggers a signal to a connected device.|
|standby||English for “be prepared”. Therefore, also called standby mode for electrical appliances. The actual functions are switched off, but the device can be returned to the function mode without long waiting times. Energy is needed to maintain the standby mode. The consumption is lower than in the operating mode, but adds up over time.|
Saving energy with a smart home heating control
The fact that it is possible to increase comfort with Smart Home is obvious: While you step into the shower in the morning, the heating control via Smart Home has already brought the bathroom to a comfortable temperature. Upon entering, the motion detector activates dim light and the radio plays quietly in the background. But Smart Home can do even more: if the last member of the family leaves the apartment, the controller will keep the heat output to a minimum, just high enough to prevent it from cooling down throughout the day. Then the heating control can bring the home back to comfortable temperatures by app or by time switch function, before the first family member comes home again.
These smart devices help save energy
70 to 80 percent of all energy costs are incurred for heating and hot water. For a 70 m 2 apartment in 2015, that was an average of about 1,000 euros, determined the nationwide heating mirror, a cooperation of the non-profit consulting company co2online and the German Tenants’ Association. With Smart Home it is possible to save up to 30 percent of these costs . Every year, that’s 300 euros more in your wallet , thanks to smart thermostats and intelligent heating control via smartphone. We introduce you to various smart home appliances that help save energy and increase comfort in the home.
A reduction of the living temperature by just 1 ° C pays off: you save about 5% to 6% of the heating costs.
The thermostat is simply plugged onto the valve of the radiator and integrated into the Smart Home system – it is ready for use. It automatically regulates the room temperature according to your specifications, which are stored in the heating profile of the room. The heating control can also be regulated by app or remote control. In general, a temperature change is possible directly on the thermostat. Remote access can even raise or lower the temperature while you are on the move. If there is a connection with a door and window contact, the thermostat automatically switches off the radiator when the door or window is opened. Only after closing the heater is reactivated.
The room thermostat can control several radiator thermostats in a room at once. The connection with the underfloor heating is possible. The commands are transmitted by radio, mounting with screws or tape. The heating control is done via the app or PC, by timer or manually on the device. As a rule, room thermostats with several temperature settings are programmable so that individual well-being temperatures can be set for the morning, the day and in the evening. In most cases, a humidity sensor is also integrated, which controls the temperature so that no mold can form. Networking with door and window contacts is also possible. Because the room thermostat can be mounted anywhere in the room, measure the temperature exactly where you want it.
The optimum temperature in living rooms is between 18 and 22 ° C.
Door and window sensor
This contact first checks whether the door or window secured with it is closed or opened. The status can be checked at any time via the Smart Home app, so that you always know if someone has gained access to the home unauthorized. When combined with a radiator or room thermostat, door and window sensors also help save energy. If there is magnetic contact, the heater can run. When the contact is released, the thermostat throttles the radiator. Many suppliers can use the heating control to determine when the sensor transmits its signals. Thanks to a programmed delay, it is possible to prevent the heating system from being shut down when the windows are opened for a short time and then restarted.
Humidity and temperature sensor
For indoors and outdoors, there are sensors that measure temperature and humidity and send this data to the central home control. The sensors are usually mounted on the wall and can measure temperatures from -20 to +80 ° C (outside) or from 0 to 40 ° C (inside). The relative humidity can be between 10 and 90 percent. The data is regularly sent to the control center or a networked weather station. In addition, programming with specific target values is possible via app or directly on the device. If, for example, they exceed or fall below 2 ° C or 10% humidity, the heating control can regulate the thermostat by radio to prevent mold growth on the inside. For external sensors, for example, the connection to electric shutters is conceivable: If the outside is too hot or too cold, the shutters will automatically shut down. In summer, it stays cool inside and warm in winter.
The heating control automatically takes over the direction with profiles
Profiles can be set using the app or the software interface, which causes certain operations to take place automatically . For example, it is possible to automate the raising and lowering of the bath heating in the morning / evening. Many providers allow for a day-specific setting, which, for example, on working days, the profile is activated one or two hours earlier than at weekends. In this way, the right temperature can be assigned for the entire course of the day: cuddly warm in the presence, cool in the absence. In addition, “event profiles” can be defined: Only when all residents – whose location is detected via the smartphone GPS – have left the house will the temperature be shut down. If you have half an hour more time than usual in the morning, the apartment will still be warm.
Which Smart Home profiles are supported and how you create them can be found in the article Smart Home: Installation .
Frequently asked questions about smart home heating control
- What information is displayed on the radiator thermostat display?
If the radiator thermostat has been integrated into the smart home system, the display will show an existing network (usually with an antenna symbol). The current room temperature can also be read off. The level of the battery can also be identified by the symbol. Many also show on the display whether a time profile has been activated. Sometimes the time and day of the week are also displayed.
- To which radiator can the thermostat be connected?
Smart thermostats can be connected to all standard radiators . It simply removes the old thermostat knob and the new mounted. An exchange of the (through) valve is usually not necessary. Depending on the manufacturer, an adapter ring is required for installation. Many thermostats are compatible with the manufacturers from the outset. For underfloor heating , the simple radiator thermostats are not suitable – this requires special thermostats.
- Is it possible to set the room temperature even if the heating control has been deactivated?
Yes. The remote control of the Smart Home system can usually be used to change the temperature. The radiator thermostats themselves have thumbwheels or knobs that increase or decrease the room temperature. Please note: deactivating the Smart Home heating control also switches off the networking with other Smart Home components. This means that the data from door and window sensors can no longer be evaluated. When the heating control is deactivated, an open window will no longer automatically cause the radiator to be throttled.
- Is it possible to prevent the heating from freezing when the batteries of the radiator thermostat are empty?
Yes. For most providers, however, the frost protection of the radiator thermostat must be activated. Then the thermostat opens the valves by 15 percent when the batteries go to zero. Otherwise, the valve remains closed, so that the room is not heated unnecessarily when the batteries are empty. Some providers equip their radiator thermostats with a valve emergency position. Then the valve is automatically opened by 15 percent to prevent freezing. For frost-prone rooms, manual activation of the frost protection is recommended, as only then can further parameters such as a minimum temperature be set via the heating control.
What are the benefits of heating control via smart home?
- You can always set the correct temperature in all heating periods and prevent overheating of the rooms.
- You can set exactly the periods in which to heat or in which not or only slightly heated.
- They can optimally regulate the humidity of each room and specifically prevent mold growth.
- You can also use the app to regulate all functions on the go and to adjust the heating control to unexpected changes.
- You save between 10 and 30 percent of your energy costs. That’s between 100 and 300 euros per year.
Saving energy made easy: Reduce power consumption with Smart Home
In addition to the intelligent heating control via radio control of power-hungry devices is the second domain of smart home solutions. Of course, the networked control can also contribute to the comfort : The smart socket activates the coffee machine when getting up – as soon as you enter the kitchen, you can expect the freshly brewed coffee. But at the same time, Smart Home helps you to reduce power consumption and thus reduce energy costs . We will introduce you to the key energy saving devices and give you tips on how to further reduce your costs.
Save energy with Smart Home: These smart appliances reduce the power consumption of your household
Fully automatic coffee machines, smart TVs, receivers, wireless routers, printers and laptops – in many households there is plenty of electronics that are only used for a few hours a day, but which are connected to the power grid around the clock. As the German Energy Agency calculated in 2010, the cost of the standby operation of home electronics amounts to an average of 115 euros per year . Particularly fatal: Many modern devices are not even signaled by a light that they run in standby. This also applies to chargers that remain in the socket after you have removed your smartphone or tablet. How high their power consumption is, is difficult to determine. The hidden costs can be quickly and easily tracked down with Smart Home. Saving energy cleverly is then quite easy.
Switching and measuring socket
This device is used to turn on and off electrical appliances. It fits into any normal household socket and can be used in a few minutes. By connecting to the control panel, the connected consumers – from the coffee machine to the radiators – can be switched on and off as required. In combination with a time control, the pot of coffee is brewed punctually every morning by the coffee machine. Or the motion sensor automatically turns on the lamp on the dresser when someone enters the room. Disconnecting the power line will help eliminate unnecessary power in standby with the Smart Switch and Meter Socket. The measurement function also provides information about the power requirement and transmits the values to the app. This allows you to easily monitor and evaluate the energy balance of your devices on smartphones and tablets.
The adapter works in principle as well as the switch and test socket and can also be attached to any household socket. The status can be called up and checked on the go via app. Also, you can easily configure the timing and linking to other elements. In conjunction with the caretaker function, the plug additionally increases safety: then it can switch connected lamps on and off at random to simulate presence. Some providers also enable / disable the connected device directly on the adapter. A measuring function is usually not included.
Wireless wall switch
The wall button – sometimes called a wall transmitter – is an all-in-one switch. Just press the button when leaving the room and the radio in the room and the lights on the shelves and sideboards will go off. And all at once, a tour is no longer necessary. The combination with intelligent radiator thermostats can also be created to save additional energy because the room temperature is lowered. Cabling is usually not necessary, wall switches and wall-mounted transmitters work radio-based. This makes it easy to attach the switch to plaster or to the wallpaper – easily with double-sided tape or with screws at the desired location: next to the ceiling light switch or anywhere else. Per app, the wall button can be configured as desired.
How much power a household consumes depends not only on the number of devices, but also on the number of family members. A one-person household needs about 1,800 kWh, with two people the consumption already increases to 2,700 kWh, with three people to 3,400 kWh. For four people you have to expect about 4,000 kWh. Compare your last electricity bill with these values - and formulate a concrete savings target.
Profiles simplify smart energy saving in the home
Even when saving energy, many functions can be controlled via profiles: Either you create a time profile so that the connected device is activated or deactivated at a certain time. Or you create event profiles . Then the motion sensor can turn on the lights – or you can use the wireless switch to turn off all connected elements at once.
You can find out which Smart Home profiles are supported and how to create them in the Smart Home: Installation article.
Particularly interesting are such time profiles for all who operate a photovoltaic system on the roof . If, for example, a washing machine or a tumble dryer are integrated into the smart home, they can be selectively activated by the control center if the solar system currently supplies a lot of energy. The time period can be set via app control, so that, for example, the laundry is finished when it returns. The exact time when the washing machine is turned on, however, determines the center – which gets information from outdoor sensors about sunshine and strength. The same applies if, for example, e-bikes or electric cars are connected. Then the central office regulates the charge according to the available solar energy. One step further goes one, if one integrates home battery storage. Then smart home also allows intelligent energy management , which makes you largely independent of the electricity supplier.
Benefits of intelligent energy saving at home
- You stay in control of your power consumption and discover devices that unnecessarily drive up your electricity bills.
- Increase comfort by turning your electrical appliances on and off automatically.
- They reduce the costs of electricity consumption and avoid expensive back payments.
Tip: Modern security for your home
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Modern security for your home
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