This year, we’ve spent more time at home than ever. One thing I’ve been really conscious about is how much more energy we’ve used around the home (oh and food. We’ve gone through a lot of food with four kids home constantly). I’m sure we can all remember those days in our childhood and teen years with our parents
nagging telling us to switch lights off, turn the radiator down and to power devices off. Now it’s my turn to be constantly telling my own kids. Thankfully, there are now a number of smart technology products available that can help us to manage our homes and therefore save us money and energy. Read on to find out how we’ve switched to smart with Hive in our home:
Hive is the UK’s leading provider of smart home technology. It’s basically an ecosystem with everything you need to connect your devices together to control elements in your home. They have a wide range of products, from Motion Sensors, to detect movement around your home, to Radiator Valves so you can manage your heating on a room by room basis. Hive’s family of smart home products work together to make your life a little easier. I love the way we can start using Hive products gradually. This makes it an affordable way to eventually make our entire house a Smart Home.
Take a look at the recent Hive Winter advert to find out more:
It all starts with the Hive Hub (RRP: £80). The Hive Hub connects all your Hive products together. This allows you to manage them remotely with the award-winning Hive app on your smartphone, tablet or laptop. I tend to use my smartphone as it’s always with me. You can even control your home with your voice as Hive is compatible with Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Home Kit.
Setting Up Your Hive Hub
The Hive Hub is so easy to use. It works straight out of the box and plugs in easily to your router.
Hive’s family of smart products include the award-winning Hive Active Heating and a range of plugs, sensors, light bulbs, indoor and outdoor cameras and thermostatic radiator valves and services. We decided to try out a Hive Door Sensor, Hive Light and a Hive Active Plug.
A Welcome Home
We chose a Hive Light (RRP: from £29 individually) and Hive Window or Door Sensor (RRP: £29.99) as we wanted a kitchen light to come in as we opened the back door. Now it gets dark early, I was starting to leave the kitchen light on before leaving the house (even if we left during daylight hours) so it wouldn’t be dark when we returned later on during the evening. This is such a waste of money and energy. It’s also not ideal when you come home later than planned and discover that you forgot to leave the light on.
We have the Dimmable Hive Light (yes, you can dim them using your phone too). In this photo, it’s dimmed low but when it’s up high it can light the whole room. Hive Lights come in different fittings and they also have Colour Change Light Bulbs that I would love in our living room and bedrooms. Hive lights are 80% more energy-efficient than traditional bulbs, making them far cheaper to run.
I installed the Hive Door Sensor and screwed the Hive Light into our kitchen lamp. Next, I built an action to tell the Hive Hub that I wanted the light to come on whenever the back door was opened during the evening.
Now, as we come home and open the back door the light automatically turns on, welcoming us into our home. It reminds me of the tradition of leaving a candle on a windowsill as a sign of welcome to all.
Pop the Kettle On
Working from home, I developed a bad habit of walking out to the kitchen, turning the kettle on, going back to work and then having to reboil it before actually making my cup of tea. Again, this is a waste of energy and money. Now I’m using a Hive Active Plug (RRP: £39), I can set the kettle up (making sure it’s full of water and the switch is down), then I can put the kettle on from my desk when I’m actually nearing the end of my work and ready for a cuppa.
The good thing about this is I can’t keep reboiling it until I reset it. So now I’m in the habit of boiling the kettle from my desk and actually getting up and making my cuppa when I hear it boil. It’s great for boiling the kettle just before an ad break (or end of an episode) from the sofa and perfect for boiling the kettle each morning from the warmth and comfort of the bed. I love getting up and being able to make my morning cup of coffee straight away. If you have a coffee or tea maker this plug would be ideal.
Hive Active Plugs can also be used as timers – great this time of year for Christmas lights. It saves you having to reach behind the Christmas tree daily too!
Hard to reach sockets are often forgotten about and left on permanently. With a Smart Plug, you can easily control them using your phone, even if they’re behind a sofa or piece of furniture. You can save energy and money on your electric bill by turning devices off at the plug, rather than leaving on standby. We definitely want more of these throughout the house. On the app, you can rename them so there’s no confusion when building actions.
Switching to Smart
Now we have a Hive Hub, the possibilities in our home are endless. We’re looking forward to investing in new Hive products to make our home run more easily. We definitely would use more Sensors, Bulbs and Active Plugs. Hive Active Heating would also be very handy. The Hive Thermostat works with your heating system. Again, you can control it on your phone wherever you are to make sure your home’s warm when it needs to be, without wasting energy. You can set schedules, get alerts if you leave the heating on and save up to £120 a year by never heating an empty home. As you build more actions there are ways to keep running the home simply too, you could set up groups and quick actions for devices. It’s possible to have a home that’s light, bright and warm when you need it but affordable to run too.
If you’re new to Hive, check out their guide: Save Money at Home with Smart Devices.
Hive will be offering up to 30% off its bestselling products during their Winter Sale (26 Dec 20 – 11 Jan 21).
Sponsored Post: We were sent a Hive Hub and Hive products as part of this campaign. All thoughts, opinions and images are our own.
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