• Ali Egan

A Currently Automated Population: The Working Family

As consumers, we understand there are behaviors we can change to save energy. For example, we can:

  • leave our thermostats set to 78 during the summer and 68 during the winter,

  • wash our clothes in cold water,

  • turn off all lights and appliances when not in use,

  • open and close our window coverings based on outside temperature and desired indoor temperature.

In today’s society, with 66% (according to the 2010 US Census) of US households having both adults working, there is typically not someone home to monitor the status of the thermostat, the lights, and the window coverings. Automation and motorization devices allow these families to worry less about the day-to-day activities they can be doing to reduce energy consumption.

Working families can utilize Smart Technology to monitor the status of various aspects of their home from work. I, personally, use smart technology and home automation every day. We have our Nest thermostat set to cool our home to 78 degrees during the weekday, then, as one of us pulls into the driveway, the thermostat turns itself down to a nice 76 degrees, which gets the air flowing and reduces the indoor humidity.

We have our Phillips Hue lights set to turn the lights on after I get out of the shower every morning to cast a dim orange glow around the room, enough so that I can see, but not bright enough to wake up anyone else. After I leave, the lights turn themselves off to conserve energy throughout the day. At 5:00pm every weekday, the lights are set so they turn on when we get home from work. During the winter months, when the sun sets much earlier, we have our lights set to come on at 4:00pm, so our dog does not sit in the dark.

We have E-Wands installed on the blinds in my living room and dining room that are set to Fully Automatic, meaning they open and close due to a change in light or a change in temperature. Having motorized blinds helps us to conserve energy by allowing a device to control the heat infiltration through the window. We also have a Samsung Smart Camera set up in the living room, so we can log in remotely from our phones to see the front door of the house, as well as our dog’s favorite spot on the couch. The camera also alerts us if there is movement, so we can be sure our home is secured. In addition to all these Smart Devices, we make use of their ability to be interconnected by integrating them with our Amazon Alexa, allowing us to control our home further by utilizing voice control.

We are one of millions of families that have made use of automation and motorization products to reduce energy consumption and to make our lives easier, and our needs are met because of home automation.

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