It can be hard to know how to chip in and make a difference to protect the environment. You can recycle, take shorter showers, or carpool to work—and now you can lower your carbon footprint just by asking your Google Assistant.
With new advancements in smart home technology, it’s actually pretty easy to incorporate energy and water-saving actions into your daily routine (and save some money while you’re at it). This Earth Day, we’re sharing a few ways the Assistant can help make your home more environmentally-friendly.
Simple ways to save energy and automate
Switch to LEDs. Swapping out just five incandescent bulbs with LED lights can save you up to $75 per year—plus, LEDs also last up to 50 times longer than incandescents, with a total life of at least 35,000 hours. Even better, pairing ENERGY STAR-certified smart bulbs like Philips Hue with the Assistant can help you control the lights with just your voice, or set lighting schedules to use electricity only when you need it.
Choose ENERGY STAR certified appliances. Did you know that appliances contribute to a quarter of your home’s energy use? To optimize how that energy is used, choose an ENERGY STAR-certified brand like LG, GE Appliances, Samsung or Whirlpool, and connect it with Google Assistant to easily control appliances like refrigerators, dishwashers, ovens and air purifiers. Certain window air conditioning units and ceiling fans also work with the Google Assistant: Just say, “Hey Google, turn off the fan” to a Haiku fan as you leave a room or schedule your LG, Midea or Toshiba AC to turn off at the same time each day.
Upgrade your thermostat. Many utilities offer rebates on smart thermostats because they make saving energy easy. Smart thermostats like the Nest Learning Thermostat can save an average of $131 to $145 a year (of course, individual savings are not guaranteed). That’s because Nest thermostats make smart, automatic temperature adjustments to save energy based on your habits. And you can even say “Hey Google, set the thermostat to eco mode” to make your home even more efficient.
Monitor and protect from leaks. According to the EPA, the average family can lose 9,400 gallons of water annually from household leaks alone. To curb this waste, you can use leak detectors like LeakSmart, or install Flo by Moen to immediately get notifications if pipes leak, and use the Assistant to shut off the water.
Curb your outdoor water use: You can still keep your lush lawn looking beautiful while using less water. Smart sprinkler systems like the Rachio 3 Smart Sprinkler Controller reduce water usage and now work with the Assistant, so you can easily control and monitor these systems with simple voice commands. As part of your Routine, you can also set the sprinklers for early morning or at night to prevent evaporation. We’re also adding support for Rain Bird’s family of Irrigation Controllers in the coming weeks.
How to set up everything with the Assistant
Download the Google Assistant or Google Home app and then click “Add device.” You can get started right away with commands like “Hey Google, turn down the temperature” with your Nest Thermostat. Or set up quick Routines that can help you automate energy savings by controlling multiple devices with a single command.
Our commitment to supporting families and the environment
There are lots of changes we can make as individuals to combat climate change, but we're taking steps as a company to reduce energy in U.S. households, too. ThePower Project is our pledge to bring one million Nest thermostats to low income families by 2023. Along with a coalition of partners—nonprofits like Habitat for Humanity and the National Housing Trust and energy companies like Georgia Power— we’ve installed Nest thermostats in homes over the last year to help families reduce their energy costs. This year, the Power Project is expanding to include partners Philips Hue and Whirlpool. Along with Nest, they’ll donate thousands of energy-saving technology products to Habitat for Humanity in the coming year. You can join us in providing energy-saving technology to those who need it most in your community by donating to nonprofits at nest.com/powerproject.
Making consistent changes to reduce energy consumption in our day-to-day lives is the key to long-term conservation; even the smallest changes add up to measurable impact. With Google Assistant and the right energy-saving technology, these changes are easier to make than ever.