It’s recently been reported that nearly 1 in 3 Australian houses have solar panels on their roofs. While it’s clear that the Australian market has come ahead in leaps and bounds when it comes to the increased profile of renewables, we still have a long way to go when it comes to the efficient monitoring of energy use in the home and that’s when the best energy monitoring app comes in.
In this article, we’ll take a look at:
- The ways in which energy monitoring is made possible in the home
- How energy monitoring has changed over time
- The various apps that exist to help you monitor energy usage in your home
- The benefits of mySunPower, SunPower’s energy-monitoring app for homes in which SunPower Maxeon panels are installed
Ready? Let’s get going.
How can I monitor energy usage at home?
There are many ways of monitoring how you use energy at home. Starting with the very basics, let’s look at a few of these now – including both those with and without the use of assistive technologies.
Anecdotal monitoring and awareness
Let’s neither ignore nor discount the fact that anecdotal monitoring of energy usage takes place in homes all the time. Ask the average person what their energy consumption is in specific figures and statistics and they’re unlikely to know. On the other hand, ask them which appliances in their home use the most energy and they’re more than likely able to answer in non-specific terms.
Put simply, it helps to be aware of which items and processes in your home consume the most/least energy before investing in better, more comprehensive and efficient ways of monitoring and improving your energy consumption.
Calculating energy usage
As anyone with engineering training or awareness will know, the calculation of approximate energy usages/consumption is fairly straightforward.
Firstly, the main unit of electrical energy is the kilowatt-hour (kWh), which is found by multiplying the power use (in kilowatts, or kW) x the number of hours during which the power is consumed.
If you multiply that value by the cost per kWh, you’ll end up with a figure which articulates total energy cost.
Unsure of how to calculate yours? Your current energy/electricity company should be able to help. You can usually find additional information towards the end of your monthly/quarterly electricity bills.
Home energy meters
Another tool to help you figure out, manage and monitor your home’s energy usage is a home energy meter. Existing as either a physical monitor or app, this is a handy invention which is cleverly designed to track your home’s total electricity use.
The physical versions clip onto your electricity meter and, when set up correctly, transmit information wirelessly to a separate display (such as an app, or other purpose-installed device). The display then demonstrates a variety of information including that such as your monthly, daily and hourly energy use, and recent energy costs.
Perhaps one of the more broadly used methods of monitoring and improving energy usage in the home is, as you may have guessed, that which is available for use on smart devices.
In this day and age, a variety of apps and energy-monitoring software exists for achieving this exact outcome: improving the way you consume energy in the home, office, and beyond.
What are the best energy monitoring apps available?
It’s important to recognise that while some energy-monitoring apps are designed to be of use to a variety of customers (no matter which energy company they’re with; solar panels, or no solar panels), some apps are linked to the energy companies with which a homeowner is contracted.
In any case, it tends to be the apps linked to a specific energy company that perform better and include more specific metrics, information and data.
Some of the most popular general, publicly available energy-monitoring apps and software include:
On the other hand, energy companies like Simply Energy (G Store’s partner company), and others are able to offer comprehensive energy-monitoring apps and software to their customers.
But what’s on offer for solar panel-owners, you ask?
Which energy-monitoring app works best with SunPower panels?
The cream of the crop is, by far, SunPower’s mySunPower app.
Let’s learn a little more about this now. We can’t wait for you to discover all its incredible benefits!
What are the benefits of mySunPower?
SunPower’s mySunPower apps allows you to:
- Monitor the efficiency of your solar panels
- Keep track of your solar energy storage levels (solar battery)
- Observe and track your energy usage – overall, and by individual appliance
- Monitor your grid credits and feed-in tariffs
- Keep ahead of changes in the production of solar energy in varying weather conditions
- Track energy consumption trends in the home by day, month, year and the lifetime of your system
- Estimate the positive impact your use of solar has had on the environment by suggesting your cost savings, CO2 emissions avoided, trees planted and grown, miles/kilometres not driven, and petrol/gas not used
- Observe information about individual panel performance (if your system contains microinverters)
…and much, much more.
Pretty impressive, huh?
What’s even more impressive is that the mySunPower app is beautifully designed and is a treat to look at, read and use.
With a clean, clear and minimal interface, it makes tracking and improving your home’s energy consumption a dream, making improvements more conceivable (and achievable) than ever before.
While a variety of options exist for monitoring, addressing and improving the way you and your loved ones use energy in the home, the most impressive system available to date exists in the form of SunPower’s mySunPower app.
To explore your options when it comes to the installation of solar panels, or to ask us more about the energy-monitoring technology available to you, visit our Learning Centre or call our friendly, award-winning team today on 1300 766 940.
We can’t wait to help you begin your journey towards a safer, cleaner and more sustainable home.