Homeowners who are in need of a new appliance might be eyeing all the options. Saving money upfront by choosing the cheapest option might make sense for the budget, but upgraded ‘smart’ appliances often boast energy-efficient features that may help homeowners save money each month on energy costs. Over time, that savings could offset the higher price tag.
While smart appliances tend to be more expensive than a basic appliance, smart models are available in a range of prices, too. A base-grade smart refrigerator costs around $1,700 but more advanced models can command more than $4,000. Other smart appliances have similar price range fluctuations.
Homeowners may find that these high-tech options not only help conserve energy (and monthly dollars!), but they also allow functionality beyond the standard appliance. Many smart appliances can sync to phones and other mobile devices to allow for appointments to appear on built-in screens (in the case of refrigerators) or to simply be alerted of an issue with the appliance.
When you’re about to head online or to the store to shop for smart appliances, here are some ‘smart’ features to consider for every appliance type.
Smart refrigerators are incredibly high-tech. Some models feature a smart screen that lets you see all the contents inside the fridge thanks to built-in cameras. This means that you’ll spend less time idly staring into the abyss of shelves trying to find that one hidden ingredient. Some models also let you stream music from your fridge! You also can connect the fridge to your phone, and notes/appointments can be sent to the fridge screen for a visual reminder.
Like the smart fridge, smart dishwashers can be connected to a phone or device. Each model may differ on what the user can control. General Electric’s model lets users view the status of the dishwasher from their phone, and homeowners can receive an alert when the cycle is complete. The GE model also lets users monitor how many dish pods are used, receive a notification if the appliance is leaking and set controls, too.
Get cooking! Yes, there are smart ovens that can save you time in the kitchen. Whirlpool’s oven is voice-activated (with Alexa), so you can speak to your appliance! The oven also learns about your cooking habits. Another cool feature? You can tell the appliance to adjust the inside layout (moving racks, etc.). It will also work with the Yummly app (the oven preheats per instruction and adjusts, too, per the app).
There are many smart washers/dryers on the market. LG offers several models! Take control of your laundry with your smartphone; LG’s model lets you change cycle settings and get notified when the wash is complete!
Smart Heating & Cooling
The need for a new HVAC can be every homeowner’s worst nightmare. HVACs tend to soar into the thousands for a new unit. However, upgrading to smart HVAC vents or thermostat when it’s time to replace the old system may be a smart move. Postscapes provides a rundown of smart vents and units that can work with your device. If you’re in need of a new HVAC system, talk to a contractor to see what brands and options are available.
Are Smart Appliances Worth the Money?
The convenience of remote connectivity is a major benefit of smart appliances. Yes, many of them boast energy-saving features that can save you money over time. However, it is the connectivity and the ability to control these appliances from a device that may appeal to buyers.
The Internet of Things can provide peace of mind, especially when homeowners are working late or traveling. Some of these appliances will provide a notification if a leak is discovered. Yet, even the simple convenience of looking at a phone and realizing that the clothes in the dryer have completed their cycle can be an incredible time saver for busy homeowners.
A higher price tag may be a drawback to those who are on a very tight budget, but for those who can spend the extra money, the benefit of their remote features may be worth the investment. Since smart appliances tend to be more of a luxury upgrade, research different models and their features to understand what appliance works best for your needs and lifestyle.