Thanks to the rise in technology and today’s smartphones, doing things we once thought impossible is a reality. Smartphone users can do some pretty cool things nowadays, such as starting their cars, and staying up to date on all the latest information. Now app developers are using the latest advancements in smartphone tech to create and release applications that will make users more energy efficient, thus saving them money and helping out the Earth at the same time. The average American family household now spends over $1600 dollars a year on utilities, and that amount could be greatly reduced if people were able to use less or just the amount they need. Lucky for us they’re apps that assist consumers in doing just that.
The iGo Vampire Calculator is a recently released app that helps combat “vampire energy.” “Vampire Energy” is the power used by appliances even when they’re turned off, and it accounts for up to 10% of home energy use. Imagine how much money you could save if you that number was cut in half. The iGo Vampire Calculator works by figuring out how much power is being used by these appliances, and the figures will surprise the heck outta you. The app does not account for model or how old the appliance is, though, so it’s a general estimate at best. But it serves it’s purpose by bringing this waste to light.
Another great application for combating excessive energy use is Energy-Efficient Profiles On Facebook, which is currently being designed by OPower and the Natural Resources Defense Council. The app taps into the power of social media giant Facebook, which is the largest and most used social media to date, to turn energy saving into a fun and friendly competition between you and your friends. This is a clever app because it not only helps users save money by reducing their energy use, but it does it in a way that makes the whole experience fun rather than a chore. This app is nearing completion and should be out sometime this year.
Energy saving isn’t just limited to your home, it can happen in your car as well. greenMeter is an app that helps users save time, energy, and gas by correcting their bad driving habits. Doing things such as constantly braking hard, speeding all the time, and taking off at an intersection is a sure fire way to spend more time at the gas station. greenMeter works by giving you common sense tips on how to save gas, such as obeying all speed limits and coasting towards a stop light rather than braking hard once you actually get there. If you can improve the efficiency of how you drive, you can put money back in your pocket.
Lights bulbs are one of the biggest users of energy and power in homes today. Traditional bulbs burn hot and use an enormous amount of power, and we use them throughout the house. What’s more, during holiday seasons we put these wasteful bulbs all over our homes and Christmas trees, which only adds to the amount of money we spend. The Light Bulb Finder app works by helping you find the perfect long lasting energy efficient light bulb that will fit your fixtures, helping you save money on replacement bulbs as well as on the light bill. This app will even let you order said light bulb online if it’s not available in your area.
All these apps work well and help save money but it’s takes consistent work and a change in bad habits from the users in order to be truly cost effective.
Neil Dunsmore is a consumer energy expert, helping ordinary Americans secure extraordinary deals on their energy bills. Visit Electric.com for more information.