Track your electricity usage with a home power monitor
Want to find out how much your energy saving efforts are paying off? Power use monitors can provide you with real-time feedback on how much electricity your home is using, including day-by-day calculations of your energy bill. This monitor can serve as an additional motivation for you and your family to save.
How it works:
Power monitors are special electronic devices designed to track your home's total electricity use. They tap into your central meter and transmit information to a separate display, which can show your monthly, daily, and hourly energy use. They also calculate your energy costs. Things to think about:
- Experiment with different behaviors and see how your total electricity use changes.
- Get instant gratification from efficiency investments. With a power monitor, you can immediately witness your energy savings.
- Encourage other family members to watch the monitor and see how it reflects their actions. This can help children, teens, and adults take a more active role in using less energy.
What to look for: Many models are available on the market and new ones are introduced all the time. Visit any online retailer and search for "power use monitor" or "home energy monitor," or visit your local home improvement store. Here are some considerations in choosing the right one for your home:
- Lower-cost units have standard numerical displays, but models are also available with color graphical displays, which can highlight interesting trends.
- Some products enable services that can provide energy saving tips customized to your home, or even save energy automatically.
- Some hardware and services are available as part of cable TV, phone, or alarm systems, while some models offer detailed information through a web site.
- Some can show the energy use of specific equipment, like your air conditioner. These units may need to be installed by an electrician.