Smart Appliances: Pros and Cons of Smart Appliances
Having smart appliances in the home is good and bad, depending on what your needs and wants are. They do have their pros and cons, so for some smart appliances may be perfect while others should wait. As with all computer-operated electronics, smart appliances may be hacked and of course, there is the extra cost in the purchase price and for repairs.
Benefits of Smart Home Automation
The smart home automation allows you to check appliances when you are not home. It also allows you to be alerted when certain events happen, such as a leak or when the lint filter needs to be cleaned. A fridge is able to show you a picture of what's inside so you don't have to waste energy by holding it open to check for things for your grocery list. The advantages of wireless home automation are many when it comes to saving money on energy. Washers, dryers and dishwashers use less water and energy because of sensors that tell the machine how it's loaded.
Disadvantages of Smart Homes
As with anything that is electronic, not everything is perfect. Disadvantages of a home automation system include cost, bugs in appliances with new smart software, hacking and the cost of repairs. Before you decide on smart appliances, read all about smart homes to determine if this is for you – and you may be surprised to see that in many cases, such as smart washers, it may very well be something that ends up being more cost-effective and saves you time.
However, because electronics are constantly being updated, manufacturers may stop support for your smart appliance after a couple years, since that model is no longer made. Since the cost to repair smart appliances is more than the cost of repairs on standard versions, be sure to figure in extra money for an extended warranty.
Applications of Home Automation System
The pros and cons of smart homes vary widely depending on how well the system is built. Many appliance manufacturers have had smart appliances out for over a year and have had time to work out some of the bugs. The future scope of home automation will include more appliances, lights, door locks, heating and cooling, cooking and drinks – think the Jetsons – and more. Some of these items are already available with automated functions.
Every year, refrigerators have new “smart” functions, including helping with the grocery shopping. A fridge can even help you stay in touch with your friends via a touchscreen. Instead of having magnets holding papers to the fridge, you'll have a screen with pictures, notes, reminders, a calendar and more.
Smart Washers and Dryers
Whirlpool and GE both make smart washers and dryers so you don't have to go to the laundry room for control of your machines. They also help save energy and water. Some models are able to connect to the power company so that they may tell you when the best time do to the laundry is. And, you'll be notified when a cycle is complete. You may set up delay cycles, tell the machine to cycle a second time if you can't get the clothes out and into the dryer soon enough and notify you that the lint filter is full.
A smart dishwasher will alert you of any performance issues, leaks and more. Watch a cycle to see how much time is left. It will even tell you when you need additional rinse agent. The biggest pros with smart dishwashers is that they use less water and energy.
For your next new home, consider adding automated appliances. However, check the company out thoroughly prior to making such a large investment.