After setting up the HummEnergy Duet electricity monitor yesterday, I was pleasantly surprised at how easy the gas monitor was to set up.
Pairing the device was easy and the manual was very clear as to which pipes need to be monitored. A velcro strap makes it really easy to attach the wires to the pipes.
Once it's all plugged in, this is what it looks like
The monitor now shows whether your hot water and radiators are on. It will show whether the water is cool, heating up or hot. It can optionally show how long the hot water has been heating. All very swish.
There's only one slight problem with the set up - and it's our flat. Rather than conventional hot water radiators, we have hot air. The same boiler that heats are water has a fan which pipes hot air around out house. We also use a gas hob to cook.
The Duet only monitors gas usage by hot water. So I'm not sure how much use it will be for monitoring our gas usage. In the last year, we used around 15,000kWh of gas. Here's how our energy company recorded our usage.
To really monitor gas usage, I think we'll have to go with Alistair MacDonald's ersatz suggestion - stick a webcam by the meter, upload images every hour and use OCR to figure out what the reading is.
That won't tell you what appliance is using the gas, but it will give a more accurate reading of how much gas you use per hour.
I'm already becoming quite a pain - running around turning lights off. Might need to get our boiler thoroughly serviced and our pipes and hot water tank properly insulated to make sure it's as efficient as possible.