Is Smart Home Tech Worth the Investment?

Written by Posted On Friday, 03 November 2017 17:11

Technology is at its best when it takes a repetitive process and makes it more efficient. This is true because of the nature of electronics and microprocessors. Computers are good at counting and they are good at storing information. When those two abilities are combined, the potential for something called "process improvement" is created.


When this principle is applied to the home, cost savings are inevitable.


A Day at Home

Think about the average day in the average home. What are the two things that change during the day, even if there is nobody in the house? Temperature and illumination. Houses generally start the day cool, become warmer for an interval, and then become cool again. The lighting in the house follows roughly the same schedule.


This is a repetitive cycle, and it has a direct impact on how much it costs to maintain that household. How much electricity is required to maintain the temperature during the day? How fast can the home be returned to its average temperature? Does it take longer than it should? Does it take longer than it used to?


Analyzing the Obvious

The information home automation and electronics can produce about a household can be used to reduce the costs of running that household over time, no matter what the data show. This is particularly advantageous to older generations, who might not make technology a high priority. Practically speaking, homes will always become less efficient over time, meaning that inflection points for expenses and the need for new insulation, appliances, windows and various other improvements can be pinpointed and compared in terms of their payback periods.


The best part is all of this analysis can be conducted automatically through the same devices homeowners use to operate their air conditioning, heating, plumbing systems, refrigerator and freezer and home security systems. If those same homeowners can know with certainty how and where they are spending the most, then they can determine with specificity when and where they should invest their improvement budget to offset their costs and reduce them over time.


Those same savings can be used to permanently offset the costs of smart home technology in the first place.


Lower Costs, Higher Returns

What is the fastest way to wear out precision electronics? Simple. Expose them to continuous temperature and humidity changes. Where do temperatures and humidity change the fastest? Inside your house. Think about your home. There are at least four appliances: shower, toilet, sinks and dishwasher, that continuously produce water vapor that has nowhere to go. There are at least three appliances: water heater, stove and furnace, that produce heat that has nowhere to go.


If your home warranty covers these appliances and they rely on precision electronics like your smart home mechanisms, you're eventually going to be looking at one or more repair bill, but not before those appliances have the potential to fail in all kinds of creative ways to increase your water, gas and electric bills.


How many electronic devices do you have in your house? What would it cost to replace them?

This is why smart home technology is so valuable. If your home systems are able to alert you in advance your house is experiencing unusual temperature and humidity issues, you can avoid these costs and reduce your utility bills in the process. You may also be in a position to evaluate things like insulation, new windows and checking doors to see if your heating and air conditioning systems are trying to provide comfort to your entire neighborhood instead of just your living room.


Using technology in ways that dovetail from its fundamental strengths is always the most efficient way to utilize its power. Taking giant lists of numbers and figuring out the patterns in them is one of the things a smart home appliance should be able to do with ease, and it shouldn't require too much expense or processing power either.


In the long run, these technologies will not only pay for themselves, but they will save you a considerable sum in unnecessary replacement of your perfectly useful appliances.

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