Finding the right gifts for your friends and family during the holidays can be challenging, especially for the hard-to-shop-for people in your life. As we enter the holiday season, Virginia Energy Sense is here to provide some energy efficient gift ideas for your friends and family. The energy-saving gadgets and devices listed below will help your loved ones conserve energy and keep their homes bright through the holiday season.

For the friend always on the go: Smart plug-in outlets

Once a device or appliance is attached to a smart plug-in outlet, it can automatically be turned off remotely through an app in your smartphone. If you happen to leave for the weekend and remember you left your computer plugged in to it, just turn it off remotely and the problem is solved. (Average cost: $15-$20)

For the digitally savvy relative: Wireless in-wall light switch and dimmer

This device allows you to control your home’s light switches from anywhere. It’s compatible with lighting loads and easy to use – plus, it also works with all other smart home devices. (Average cost: $20-$50)

For the friend obsessed with technology: Smart LED bulbs

LEDs use less energy and last longer than traditional incandescent lightbulbs, which translates to more cuts to your energy bill over time. Notably, some LEDs can connect to smart home devices and be turned off remotely or on a regular schedule. (Average cost: $20-$50)

For Grandma and Grandpa: Eco-charging stations

Plug multiple devices into an eco-charging station and energy consumed will be reduced since all will simultaneously be charged. These charging stations can also reduce vampire power by automatically shutting off when devices are fully charged. (Average cost: $20-$40)

For the person who has everything: Smart power strips

When you plug multiple devices into a smart power strip, devices can be auto switched to be turned on and off automatically. Say goodbye to vampire energy! (Average cost: $25-$50)

For the relative who wants to improve their holiday display: Solar-powered holiday lights

Place the solar panel into the ground and string your holiday lights as usual on your home. Once the sun goes down, the lights will illuminate and can run for 8-12 hours at a time. (Average cost: $5-$18)

For the parents who always needs to control the thermostat: Smart thermostats

Smart thermostats are programmable and can learn your schedule to then adjust its own settings when nobody is home. This will help balance temperatures around your home during the winter to keep your energy bill from running high. (Average cost: $120-$250)

For the energy conscious family friend: Energy monitors

Energy monitors can range in scope to monitoring a single device to keeping track of energy usage across your entire house. For the single device energy monitors, plug it into the outlet and attach your device to learn how much energy it consumes. The home energy monitors are more expensive but can give feedback and suggestions on how to reduce energy consumption.

  • (Average cost for single device monitors: $20-$45)
  • (Average cost for home monitors: $200-$250)

For the whole family: Energy efficient appliances

If you’re in need of a new appliance in your home, like a dryer, toaster or even a crock pot, remember to keep an eye out for whether the appliance is energy efficient. In some cases too, your utility might offer a rebate to help alleviate some of the upfront costs for it. Visit our residential energy efficiency incentives page to learn more. (Average cost can vary)

These gifts are available at your favorite local hardware stores or online retailers. The ideas listed above are sure to brighten the lives of your friends and family this holiday season and will help you and your loved ones “value your power.” Visit our website for more tips and advice on saving energy at home during the holidays.

Lesson Plans
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Get your students energized about responsible energy use! In partnership with the Virginia Department of Education, we’ve created fun, multi-day, Lesson plans to help you teach your students how to understand and conserve energy! They’re classroom-ready and free to use!