Meet Steam, a New Smart Water Heater Monitor

How much do you spend per month heating your water?

If you’re like me, you have no idea. But an average of 15% to 20% of energy bills are spent on water. Yikes.

Steam, a new smart water heater solution, is working to take the guesswork out of water heater bills. It’s a nifty little piece of hardware that can connect to existing or new water heater tanks. It takes 10 minutes to install and has simple connecting sensors for an easy set up.

I know what you’re thinking — great, another smart home gizmo. There are certainly plenty of “things” in the Internet of Things that are gimmicky, but Steam really isn’t.

Investing the $200 in a Steam system will pay for itself in a year for a standard 3 bedroom home. Smart home products that decrease your monthly bills, improve the environment, and add legitimately useful insight are pretty much anything but gimmicky. Especially when they solve a convoluted issue like water heater bills.

With Steam, you can schedule and control your hot water heater through the app. This includes setting and checking the temperature, monitoring the amount of water left in the tank, and other features. Similar to the Nest Learning Thermostat, Steam learns your habits and usage patterns after a few weeks to adjust water temperatures automatically.

Another valuable feature offered by Steam is leak detection notifications, which notify you when leaks are discovered at the base of the tank or on the floor.

As the home automation market continues to grow, products like Steam are changing the landscape. Instead of purchasing a new smart microwave, fireplace, dishwasher, toilet (hey, it could happen), or garage door opener, it makes much more sense that users can simply attach retrofit smart devices to existing hardware. Steam One (which will be released later this year) will be fully compatible with the majority of Electric and Gas powered hot water tanks on the market, which is much more enticing than committing to an expensive smart device and throwing out your perfectly functional “dumb” devices.

We’ve seen more of these devices popping up lately, like the Roost WiFi-enabled battery that you can plug in to your existing smoke detector (it’s buggy and has several negative reviews, but still, it’s a step in the right direction). There’s also the Sensibo air conditioner controller and Sesame smart lock, the only smart lock that allows you to keep your currently installed deadbolt.

It will certainly be interesting to see if more retrofit smart home products like Steam will begin taking over the market, at least for more expensive appliances that can’t easily be replaced with smart technology. This change could lead to the widespread acceptance of smart home technology because it doesn’t require users to swap out all of their home’s devices.

Steam will ship later this year and is currently available for limited pre-order for $99 (it’s usually $200). They also have a referral program and coupon for any referrals that you sign up for pre-orders. For more information, head to

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