Beginners guide to home energy management systems
Before you install any home energy management system (HEMS) in your home, it’s important to know you’re getting the best value from it. With dozens of different types of systems on the market, how do you know which will maximise the return on your investment?
Reposit can save you energy and time with these tips for making the right choice for your home.
What are home energy management systems?
A HEMS is a smart box comprised of hardware and software that works together to learn your energy usage patterns and, when connected to the internet, can use this information in conjunction with weather reports to ensure you are using your hard-earned solar energy at the most cost effective times.
If you’re not quite ready to make the commitment to solar power, you can still benefit from a HEMS. Smart plugs that help you control appliances and the energy they consume can be purchased for as little as $20 and can help you understand your energy usage – a vital tool for anyone looking to invest in solar.
So, what should you be looking for in a HEMS?
It should be able to learn
When looking for a HEMS, go for one that learns about and adjusts to your home’s energy usage patterns. Your lifestyle changes day to day, so that learning function means you’re not constantly having to reprogram the system. If you go on holiday, Reposit’s Hibernate feature lets you pause this learning so life, and your energy usage, can resume as normal on your return.
Your HEMS should also be constantly monitoring local weather reports alongside time of use (ToU) tariffs so you will only pull energy from the grid at the cheapest time.
It should give you a real time look at your energy usage
Ever been curious about the energy your partner chews up with their 20-minute showers? What about when your son boots his PS4 up? Your HEMS provides you with this data in real time and can help you make smarter choices as a result.
It’ll be the bigger items that will really lead to your energy savings, so learning when you use your clothes dryer and for how long can ensure your solar setup has the power it needs at that time. And if it doesn’t? Your HEMS will know to pull power from the grid when it’s cheapest for such a scenario.
Rainy weather forecast on the weekend when you were planning on finally getting through that mountain of washing? The data recorded and stored in the app will help you work out when you should run your machine at the most cost-effective time.
It should help you save money
Most HEMS will provide you with an online dashboard or an app to view and monitor all this data, like the Reposit Power App. Keep track of how much you have reduced your electricity bill thanks to your setup, see how much energy you’ve drawn from the grid – at what rates and total cost, and monitor your daily, weekly and monthly expenses.
Low solar feed-in tariffs mean often there’s little incentive to send your excess solar electricity back to the grid, right? Enter Reposit GridCredits®, a special kind of ‘currency’ for Reposit customers. With GridCredits, you’ll get money off your electricity bill by selling the stored energy in your solar battery back to selected power companies for the highest possible price.
It should give you total control
Don’t be put off by the term “home automation”: your HEMS lets you take the reins. Got a solar battery in your system? You can automatically pre-charge these with cheap off-peak grid electricity to use on days when sunlight is low but your energy usage is high.
Reposit works with web service If This, Then That (IFTTT) to give you the power to remotely switch appliances on and off. If you have excess solar in your system, you can turn on your dishwasher, washing machine and even your pool pump, so that solar power is not being wasted.