With rising energy costs, along with general living expenses, it makes sense to try to save some money wherever you can. One of the ways you can return some of that hard-earned cash back into your pocket with an electricity usage monitor.
There are a number of different models currently available; therefore, it can be a daunting prospect deciding which one to choose. That’s why we have reviewed a selection of the most popular and also compiled a useful buying guide.
So, let’s go through them and find the best electricity usage monitor for your home…
- 1 Top 7 Best Electricity Usage Monitor In 2021 Reviews
- 1.1 1 Etekcity VeSync Smart Plug – Best 4 Pack Smart Electricity Usage Monitor
- 1.2 2 P3 Kill a Watt EZ – Best International Electricity Usage Monitor
- 1.3 3 TP-Link Kasa Smart Plug – Best Voice Controllable Electricity Usage Monitor
- 1.4 4 Baldr US – Best Electricity Usage Monitor for North America
- 1.5 5 Sense – Best Real Time App Electricity Usage Monitor
- 1.6 6 Excelvan TS-836A – Best Budget Electricity Usage Monitor
- 1.7 7 Estink Meter – Best Affordable Electricity Usage Monitor
- 2 Best Electricity Usage Monitor Buying Guide
- 3 Are You Looking For More Superb Tech Devices?
- 4 So, What Is The Best Electricity Usage Monitor?
Top 7 Best Electricity Usage Monitor In 2021 Reviews
1 Etekcity VeSync Smart Plug – Best 4 Pack Smart Electricity Usage Monitor
This product from Etekcity is a step above the rest in the monitoring of electricity usage. This is a four set of smart plugs that not only can monitor power usage, but can turn our house into a smart home. They are easy to use and don’t take up too much room on the socket.
No need to connect to a hub; just install the Vesync App, and your smartphone or tablet becomes a remote. That’s as long as your home Wi-Fi is running. Installing a smart plug will also give you additional options for saving power consumption.
More than just monitoring…
Having the ability to monitor your energy consumption is just one part of the equation. The VeSync allows you to set a threshold for any device plugged into it. This can prevent power spikes, as once the device goes above the threshold, it automatically shuts off.
An energy saving mode will also switch your device off once a pre-programmed cost level is reached. These handy features go beyond the capability of only monitoring energy usage and costs, which, of course, can still be performed from anywhere in the world.
Talking to your devices…
These smart plugs are fully compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant. Now any device or appliance that is plugged into your smart plug can be controlled using your voice. An easy first step into home automation.
Schedules and timers can also be set using the VeSync App. Not only a convenience feature, but this can also provide additional safety. You can easily program the lights to turn on or off when you are coming home late at night.
- Additional energy saving features.
- Smart home integration.
- Affordable solution.
- Does not support Apple Homekit.
- No Samsung SmartThings support.
2 P3 Kill a Watt EZ – Best International Electricity Usage Monitor
If you’re not interested in smart home integration and just want to be able to monitor your power usage, then this is the type of device you should be considering. All you need to do is plug it in between the appliance or device and your wall socket.
Thanks to the P3 Kill a Watz monitor, you will now be able to detect if your appliance or device is responsible for excess energy consumption. There are a range of options available via the large LED display.
Using the menu buttons underneath the display, you can enter your own utility costs instead of having to calculate them yourself each time. The device will then calculate the costs and forecasts by week, month, and year.
Built-in battery backup means that you will not lose your data, even in a power outage. The figures produced by the device are accurate within 0.2%, which should give you confidence in identifying power-hungry items in your household.
Cost and quality monitoring…
Not only can the device calculate the projected energy usage cost, but it can also check the quality of the power. This is done by measuring voltage, line frequency, and power factor. Now you’ll know if it’s time for a new appliance.
By monitoring and isolating the items in your house that are power hungry can save you hundreds, if not thousands, over the year. This most likely will be enough to replace the offending item and save you money well into the future.
- Large LED display.
- Battery backup.
- Cost projections.
- Display not backlit.
- Does not work well with heaters.
3 TP-Link Kasa Smart Plug – Best Voice Controllable Electricity Usage Monitor
Here we have another smart plug, this time produced by the network heavyweights TP-Link. This device will work similarly to the VeSync smart plug, so let’s see how they compare and find out which device offers the best features.
To begin with, you only receive one plug instead of four. The device itself is also larger than the VeSync, which may cause some inconvenience. But can this device offer anything additional to the other smart plug?
Energy saving features…
Just like the VeSync, you can also monitor your energy usage with weekly and monthly forecasts. There is also the same scheduling feature that will allow you to control when your items are turned on or off.
Unfortunately, it does not have the same abnormal power protection or energy-saving modes. There is a scene function, though, which can link multiple appliances and devices to a profile. These can then be controlled with the single press of a button.
No hub needed…
There is no need for a hub, and the device can be controlled by installing the free Kasa app on your tablet or smartphone. You can add as many plugs as you like, and they can all be controlled through the same App.
Completely compatible with both Google Assistant and Alexa gives the ability to control parts of your home with your voice. While this device performs well, it does miss a couple of the features available with the VeSync.
- Smart Home integration.
- Compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant.
- Accurate energy consumption monitoring.
- Takes up two socket spaces on a wall socket.
- Limited energy saving features.
4 Baldr US – Best Electricity Usage Monitor for North America
Now for another electricity monitor that is similar to the P3. Once again, this product from Baldr does not require any Wi-Fi and does not offer any smart home technology. This is strictly a monitoring device only.
There are two different versions of the Baldr, and you need to select the correct one. A single tariff model is for those who have a utility plan with a single price per unit. The dual tariff model supports peak and off-peak pricing structures.
All of these devices can only handle up to a certain load. The Baldr can safely operate up to 1875 W. If the load goes beyond that, the screen will flash ‘OVERLOAD’ to warn the user. You can also set the limit yourself to assist in monitoring your appliances and devices.
Just like the P3, the Baldr offers battery backup in case of a power outage. Your data monitoring integrity can always be assured. They can be easily replaced with two 3.6 V batteries.
There are six different modes that can be cycled through, all providing different information. All the data can be easily read using the large backlit LED display. All of this is controlled using the four buttons located under the screen.
The modes include voltage and cumulative power, cost, frequency, power factor and Co2 volume, overload, and accumulative cost. Each of these functions also display the cumulative time simultaneously.
- Backlit LED screen.
- Battery backup.
- Single and dual tariff models.
- Device is large.
- Screen can be difficult to read from an angle.
5 Sense – Best Real Time App Electricity Usage Monitor
This device is something a little different again. You can almost think of it as a hybrid between the other style devices. It is installed in your breaker panel, and you can then track your power usage via an App on your phone or tablet.
Once installed, you can track your home’s electrical use in real-time. You can see the usage increase and decrease every time you switch on or off an appliance or device. You will have to continually monitor and make adjustments to get the most out of the Sense, though.
Setting up and installation…
Inside the included instructions, they specifically tell you to hire a licensed electrician to install the Sense. If you have completed electrical work before, you can probably handle it, but we don’t recommend it, of course. It should take around 10 to 20 minutes to install.
After Sense has been installed in your breaker panel, just download the App. Once you have signed up, monitoring starts immediately. For the first few days, you can watch your usage go up and down as you use electrical items around your house.
Then the real fun begins…
Over time, Sense will begin to recognize devices. It will notice if you use things like a washing machine or even as specific as an individual hotplate on your stove. You then have the option to modify each of the items it recognizes.
It doesn’t always get it right, which is why you need to carefully monitor it, to begin with. But once you have it set up correctly, this device is absolutely perfect for data nerds. This device is the most expensive on our list, but if you take the time to set it up correctly, it will also be the most accurate and beneficial.
- Clever algorithms automatically detect devices.
- Specific and accurate monitoring and feedback.
- Easy to use App.
- Requires professional installation.
- Least affordable option.
6 Excelvan TS-836A – Best Budget Electricity Usage Monitor
Have you ever wondered how much those appliances cost that sit in standby mode? Is it worth leaving those devices that only get used occasionally plugged in, or should they only be plugged in when needed?
Well, using the Excelvan can help you make that decision. This budget electrical usage monitor can easily save you more than the purchase price in a relatively short time. All this by just plugging it in between your device and the wall socket.
Monitor how much you spend…
When setting up the Excelvan, you can enter the value that you pay from your utility company per kWh. You can set any number between 00.00 and 99.99 for the cost per kWh and then identify exactly how much each device is costing you.
You don’t have to worry about losing your data during a power outage either, as there is battery backup. The battery is built-in and rechargeable, so you never have to worry about replacing them.
There are a range of measurements possible using the Excelvan. Each of them includes the accumulated time, along with cumulative usage, current, voltage, minimum, maximum, watts, price, and overload.
Each of these functions can be cycled through, along with any settings, by using the four buttons located underneath the large LED display. We did find that the information was large; however, we found it difficult to read from an angle.
- Affordable option.
- Easily track device power costs.
- Built-in rechargeable battery backup.
- No backlight in display.
- Display is difficult to read from an angle.
7 Estink Meter – Best Affordable Electricity Usage Monitor
For our final product on our list is this monitor from Estink. This is almost identical in design to the Excelvan model and is also very affordable. There is one important feature that puts this device ahead, though.
Often wall sockets aren’t in the most convenient location. To assist in reading the information on the display, there is a bright blue colored backlight. This is a feature unfortunately often neglected by the other devices.
More handy features…
The backlight isn’t the only great feature that this device offers. It is possible to set both single and dual tariff pricing. Most of the other devices only offer one or the other, and not both at the same time.
Another useful feature is the overload protection. If any device exceeds the maximum rating of 1650 W, the LCD screen will flash overload, an audible noise will sound, and the device will automatically shut off.
There are seven different functions that can be cycled through, each with different useful information. These include kWh, amps, voltage, power, power factor, cost, frequency, min/max power, and cumulative time.
Just like the other similar devices, there is a data hold function. If you unplug the device or there is a power outage, then you won’t lose any of the current data. With all these great features, this device represents great value.
- Great value device.
- Backlit LCD display.
- Overload protection.
- Device is large.
- Screen also difficult to read at an angle.
Best Electricity Usage Monitor Buying Guide
As you can see, there are a variety of different options for monitoring your power usage. From simple measuring units to smart devices with a whole lot more capabilities. There really is something to suit everyone’s budget.
So How Do You Decide Which Of These Devices Are The Most Suitable For Your Needs?
Well, that’s where this handy buying guide comes into play. We will now highlight the differences, along with the advantages and disadvantages of each style of device.
The single plug devices with an LCD screen are great for those who simply would like to take a variety of measurements around the home. They are affordable and very easy to install and operate. Once you have set your kWh costs, you’re ready to plug and go.
They do, however, lack the flexibility and additional features of the smart plugs. And they also won’t really save you much money compared to the smart plugs either.
Being able to move your home into the future with voice activation along with your energy monitoring, is awesome. You can also have full remote access from your smartphone or tablet. All for around the same investment as the standard monitoring devices.
These smart plugs do, however, require the downloading of an App, and some people don’t own a device to install an app onto. Although, if you’re reading this, we doubt that is you. While these are great for around the home, if you would also like to measure your electricity usage in an RV, campervan or trailer, you will need to have Wi-Fi.
If you still haven’t made a decision by now, hang around as we reveal our choice of the best monitor for electricity usage and why, but first…
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So, What Is The Best Electricity Usage Monitor?
As we have just mentioned, there are two main styles of electricity usage monitor. Let’s call them smart and non-smart. Our first step in choosing what we think is the best is picking a side. We decided to go with the smart devices.
The smart plug we thought was the best is the…Etekcity VeSync Smart Plug
It cannot only perform the same tasks as the non-smart devices but so much more. All while being offered at an incredibly affordable price.