The energy management space is really crowded, and the pace of innovation is hard to keep up with. While researching the various options on the market, I saw an opportunity to learn what one company's doing. Vantage, a long-time provider of home automation solutions for luxury homeowners, is located down the road in Orem, Utah, and the company just released a new Energy Management Solution. It's designed to save homeowners upwards of $600 – $1,500 per year, and the Vantage was kind enough to give me a tour of their offices to see how the solution works.
Vantage tells me they have the only solution on the market today that shows homeowners the actual kilowatt hours and dollars they're saving in real-time. They do this by installing a separate power meter, which is hooked into the rest of the system.
All this information is available on the interface dashboard (shown above), which you can customize. The top left quadrant shows the home's actual electrical use. If you're using too much electricity, use one of the strategies in the lower left quadrant to cut energy use. Sweep off all lights. Modify the temperature. Dim the lights. Harvest daylighting. Use the lower right quadrant to adjust the indoor temperature or get a five-day weather forecast. Use the upper right quadrant to see what you're spending and saving.
Interfaces come in all shapes and sizes, and you can have as many of these as you like. In addition to the interface, the Energy Management Solution includes all of the following components:
- Software that is uploaded to the Vantage system;
- A separate power meter quickly installed by the dealer;
- New ranges of occupancy and ambient light sensors; and
- Wired and wireless interfaces that integrate with window treatments.
Importantly, the lights, entertainment center, and window treatments are all connected and accessible on the interface dashboard. If you want to turn everything off, you can do that. If you're at work, and you want to surprise your spouse at home, you can go online and turn on the entertainment system. You can program the system to sweep off at 8 pm and 11 pm, or whatever, just to make sure everything turns off. It's all connected …
So, with the Energy Management Solution, you could possibly see annual energy efficiency savings in the following areas:
- 5 – 15% – Measurement / real-time feedback
- 5 – 15% – Lighting (on / off motion sensing and dimming)
- 5 – 15% – Shade control
- 5 – 15% – HVAC control
To get a price, you'll have to contact one of their thousands of trained dealers. I'll tell you this, though: the system is not cheap. It's a comprehensive solution designed to work with a lot of different components. If you're serious about having an energy management system, give Vantage a look. I was impressed from start to finish.
Photo credits: Vantage.