So- you want to monitor your home’s energy usage. You want to take advantage of the new energy features in Home Assistant. I don’t blame you- I do too.

https://www.home-assistant.io/blog/2021/08/04/home-energy-management/

But- since I have already done quite a few hours of research, I am going to share the most promising options with you, to hopefully save you some time.

Disclaimer- Amazon affiliate links are used in this article. For this site, I choose to not pesture my audience with annoying advertisements, and instead, only rely on affiliate links to support this hobby. By using the affiliate link, you will pay the same price on Amazon, as you would otherwise pay, however, a small percentage will be given to me.. To note- I DID buy all of the seen products with my own money, and did not receive any incentive to feature or utilize them.

Disclaimer 2- Other then the amazon affiliate links in this article- NOTHING here is sponsored. Any hardware I have purchased, was done so from my own pocket, and in no way, reimbursed.

Products

Shelly EM

Vendor Link: https://shelly.cloud/products/shelly-em-smart-home-automation-device/

Amazon Link: https://amzn.to/2VMRDP2

Native Home Assistant Integration: https://www.home-assistant.io/integrations/shelly/

Can also run ESPHome, effortlessly.

Description

Each unit can monitor up to two circuits.

Summary

I have nothing but positive to say regarding Shelly. The devices are outstanding. They offer full local control. You can even flash ESPHome onto them, without having to disassemble the device.

I believe these units are around 60$ a piece, making it a bit pricy if you want to monitor your entire circuit panel.

As well- the Shelly 2.5 DOES have built-in support for power monitoring of loads attached to it.

https://shelly.cloud/products/shelly-25-smart-home-automation-relay/

I have a few of these, and they have been working fantastically well. I would always recommend Shelly.

CircuitSetup

Vendor Link: https://circuitsetup.us/shop/

Native Home Assistant Integration provided by ESPHome

Description

Circuit setup will sell you a circuit board, to which you can add your own ESP32 to, and monitor up to 42 current channels, in real time at 16-bit resolution.

The price isn’t too unreasonable too. I believe it costed me 150$ to acquire enough hardware to monitor every circuit in my panel.

Summary

The downside to this setup- it is VERY DIY. If you are not familiar with ESPHome, ESP-Devices, and general circuitry, this is NOT the option for you. However- if you are not scared of ESPHome and a bit of DIY- this may be the best option for you. Everything is 100% local, and controlled by YOU.

Edit- if you happen to need support on this product, its…. hard to come across….

Aeotec Home Energy Meter

Vendor Link: https://aeotec.com/z-wave-home-energy-measure/

Amazon Link: https://amzn.to/3sapQ7d

Native Home Assistant Integration Provided by Z-Wave

This is a z-wave based solution which will monitor the power consumption at your mains.

Summary

I would have loved to test this product out. Z-wave means full local control, and standardization. However- I actually went with the circuitSetup option linked above.

I have heard many great things about Aeotec, I would assume this product would work exactly as advertised.

On a positive note- being z-wave means setup and installation should be very simple if you already have a z-wave setup at your residence.

If you do not have any existing z-wave infrastructure, you may instead evaluate some of the other wifi-based alternatives.

The only downside- you do not get per circuit monitoring unless you acquire multiple units.

IotaWatt

Product Link: https://stuff.iotawatt.com/?v=7516fd43adaa

Third-party integration available: https://community.home-assistant.io/t/custom-component-iotawatt-energy-monitor-integration/254110

PENDING Native Integration

Summary

This actually looks like a very impressive option. It is in-line with the cost of the circuit setup option and is also completely open source.

Based on what I have read, documentation-wise- this is a very good contender for entire-home, per-circuit monitoring.

If- I had not already purchased the circuitsetup option above, I would have likely went with this product instead. It looks more professional. The hardware comes shipped in a single piece, and it looks like a pretty solid solution.

IAMMeter

Product Link: https://www.iammeter.com/

Native Home Assistant Integration: https://www.home-assistant.io/integrations/iammeter/

Summary

I am not very familiar with this product, however it comes at a ~90$USD Price-point for monitoring a single phase. Or- 160$ USD for monitoring a three-phase house, or split-phase setup (This is what is typical in US households).

A bit pricy, IMO based on the alternatives here, however, it does offer din-rail mounting, which can make for a very clean setup if you have a seperate nearby box with din-rails.

On a strong-positive note, it does have a native integration with home assistant, which makes setup in HA a piece of cake. Vendor HA Documentation: https://www.iammeter.com/docs/homeassistant

This looks like a good option, in my opinion.

GreenEye Residential

Vendor Link: https://www.brultech.com/greeneye/

Store Link: https://www.brultech.com/store/

Native Home Assistant Integration: https://www.home-assistant.io/integrations/greeneye_monitor/

Summary

This is one of the few options on this list supporting ethernet AND wifi. It also supports complete local control as well.

Based on what I have seen, there is not a cloud component to this option which is always a plus… at least for me.

If you need to monitor a large number of circuits, and you don’t want to put together your own firmware this product is likely your best option… as the cost is quite reasonable when you look at other solutions to monitoring 20+ circuits.

As another positive note this unit can also monitor pulse sensors from your energy meter.

In my opinion, this product is a very attractive choice if you wish to monitor a large number of circuits. It does not require ANY diy, other then installation. It is essentially a plug and play module, with a native integration. It has its own server as well for configuration and display of data.

Sense

Vendor Link: https://sense.com/

Amazon Link: https://amzn.to/3fU0NjE

Native Home Assistant Integration: https://www.home-assistant.io/integrations/sense/

Summary

This device is advertised as being able to monitor your entire home, and to even distinguish different devices.

It even has an OFFICIAL integration built-in.

The downsides- This is dependant on cloud-polling. It is also quite pricey compared to the other options. I have heard a few times- its detection of specific devices may or may not work well.

In my OPINION- it only senses at the mains level, and does not have sensors on a per-circuit basis. So- if you have a house with lots of electrical noise. Multiple AC units. Multiple Fridges. A mini server room like me. A shop containing welders and lathes- I don’t imagine its detection is going to work that well. But- if you have a 2 bedroom apartment, with a very standard setup- it will prob work very well. But- at the 300$ price point- that is a bit pricey compared to some other options.

Based on what I have seen from others, and my own conclusions, I would strongly recommend choosing another product.

Emporia Home Energy Monitoring

Vendor Link: https://www.emporiaenergy.com/

Amazon Link: https://amzn.to/3AMQXsf

3rd Party Home Assistant Integration: https://github.com/magico13/ha-emporia-vue

Description

Entire home energy monitoring, with support up to 16x 50amp circuits.

Summary

Update 11/23/21 –

If you wish to use this product with local MQTT, a user has posted a guide on how to accomplish that feat here:

https://flaviutamas.com/2021/reversing-emporia-vue-2

I would NOT recommend this product. The company has officially stated, they have no plans on making a local integration. While the product does utilize a ESP32 microcontroller, AND MQTT- You will not be able to use this with local access. This means- it is dependant on your internet. As well- the update frequency is quite bad I have heard. There IS a non-official 3rd party integration to pull this data into Home assistant, however.

More Details:
https://community.emporiaenergy.com/topic/api-to-pull-data

(Screen captures from the official replies, in the event this thread gets taken down)

NO PLans on local API.

Completely DIY

Assuming you LOVE to tinker with your own gadgets- you could design your own solution leveraging a simple ESP Microprocessor, with a few CT-Clamps.

Do note- your typical ESP8266 only offers a single ADC GPIO. If you wanted to monitor more then a single circuit with a single ESP, you would need to leverage a ADC Multiplexer. This would increase the complexity of your project.

If you leverage an ESP32, it has the advantage of having 15 on-board ADC pins making it a much better option.

For CT-Clamps- those are pretty easy to acquire. The only other piece you need to be aware of- is you will need to construct a voltage divider using resistors and capacitors. There is math involved to build this circuit based on the parameters of your CT Clamps. I am not going to do dig into the logic and math entailed here.

Personally- I took the route of having a piece of hardware already assembled.

Edit 8/12- If you want to take the route of DIY, A user below has posted an excellent write-up available here: https://oklahtronics.com/2020/10/power-monitor/

PiPowerMeter

Github Link: https://github.com/crjens/PiPowerMeter

Board Schematics: https://github.com/crjens/PiPowerMeter/tree/master/Eagle/V4.0

Home Assistant Integration: Manual REST / MQTT

Description

This is a 100% open source, DIY project based on a raspberry PI. Based on the documentation, It can support monitoring up to 128 circuits at the same time, and uses multiplexing to do so.

Integration with home assistant I imagine, would be a somewhat manual activity requiring setup of APIs or MQTT to pull the data. As a plus side, this product does display its own dashboards. The price is also quite competitive, as it is 100% DIY.

Other Notes / Alternatives

  • TP-Link has plugs which will report power usage statistics. In my experiences with my kasa plugs- it has not been very reliable for reporting power usage data. Also- Kasa has been plagued with issues lately affecting local control over their products. I would not recommend.
  • Inovelli Red Dimmers will report power usage. This has been working extremely well for me. I would highly recommend inovelli reds.
  • IF you have solar- many inverters do have serial data or integrations, which can usually be tied into home assistant quite easily.

MY Personal Recommendations

For me to recommend a solution, it would be dependant on a few factors.

  1. Do you need Per-Circuit monitoring?
    1. YES
      1. Are you an extremely technical individual who loves to tinker, write programs, and build devices?
        1. YES ->CircuitSetup is completely controlled by you. You provide your own firmware. You write the program. You assemble the hardware. It is scalable up to 42 circuits.
        2. YES -> IotaWatt offers the same advantages as circuitsetup, but, with far less DIY involved on the hardware side. Same price point as well. Using the third-party integration available could make this easy to implement. Its essentially plug and play with minimal setup required.
        3. NO -> I want plug and play. The GreenEye is just for you. It is essentially plug and play, includes its own local server, and has native home assistant integration.
  2. Do you have an existing z-wave network
    1. YES -> Aeotec Home Energy Meter.
  3. Do you have an existing wifi network?
    1. YES -> Shelly EM.
  4. Are you looking to do per-device monitoring?
    1. Light switches – Invoelli Red Z-Wave switches are top-notch. Expensive- but, well featured.
    2. Wall Circuits – Shelly 2.5 Cannot say anything negative about Shelly. I have had a few of these hidden inside of my switch boxes for years, enduring high temps. They have worked perfectly. Even better with ESPHome.
    3. Smart Plugs- I don’t have any products I would currently recommend here. I cannot recommend kasa.

Edit- 10/8/2021-

Last month, I acquired another expansion board for my CircuitSetup. During installation, I accidentally slotted the ESP32 incorrectly (Easy to do- as the headers are one pin too wide). This ended up cooking the chips on my board. After finding support……. extremely slow to assist, and nearly non-existent, I picked up an Iotawatt. It was delivered to my house very quickly. I plugged the device in, and added it to the network with ease. The device has a web-gui which allowed everything to be effortlessly setup and configured. As well, it monitors quite a few channels out of the box. I would highly recommend it. It has been working without issues.

Closing notes-

This article is not meant to be the end-all, be-all for what options are out there- This article is to get the conversation started and to put this data into a single place.

I have seen countless threads over the last couple weeks since the update, for people requesting methods for monitoring energy. So- I have just taken the liberty of documenting the options I am aware of.

If you have an alternative option, Please do post it below for all to see.

Join the discussion 16 Comments

  • email-not-valid says:

    So from what I can tell the bets bang for bucks (accuracy for dollar) will be clearly the pzem004t v3 paired with a esp and supercharged with esphome.

    For less than $10 you can get the pzem004t (one per phase) and you will get very accurate data (on par with thousand dollar fluke equipment!).

    Link to the esphome integration: https://esphome.io/components/sensor/pzemac.html

  • FY says:

    Shelly is bringing out a new product on October 1st 2021. The Shelly Pro 4PM which monitors/switches four separate channels with 16A each and 40A total.
    They also support DIN rails an LAN, which is exactly what Im looking for. They cost 80€ in the Shelly store.

    Im probably going to go with a mix of those, a Shelly 3EM for the mains and one Shelly EM for the kitchen. (as that obviously needs more than the 16A the 4PM can support)

  • Kyle says:

    I got the Vue Gen 2 when it was first released, and while it works well for what it is advertised to do, I was really hoping for local data integration at some point.

    Having lost internet a few times recently I started looking around for open source options and almost pulled the trigger on the IoTa Watt, but was bummed about only having 12 Aux channels (I have a busy panel).

    The circuit setup looks perfect though. It actually adds additional circuits over the vue, and maintains the ability to monitor both halves of a split phase system if you grab 2 transformers.

    Thanks for the write-up, might not have found CS otherwise.

    • XO says:

      Give it a week or so, and I should have an article regarding the Circuit Setup. I think my unit will be arriving sometime later this week.

  • Sam Hoyt says:

    I did a writeup a while back about my experience making a diy energy monitor with an esp32. It’s been running pretty well for me for about a year now.
    You can check it out here if you want:
    https://oklahtronics.com/2020/10/power-monitor/

    • XO says:

      That is a very good writeup, I posted a link up above to refer users to your site for the DIY section.

      I actually have most of the required components sitting on my desk to put one together, I just…. lost interest around the time voltage divider math came into the equation. :-/ One of these days when I have a few minutes, I am going to take another swing at it.

      • Sam Hoyt says:

        Yeah if it weren’t for other guides on the internet already having laid out the voltage divider math I don’t know that I would have had the willpower to figure it out.
        I appreciate the link. My intention was to do basically what you’ve done here and start documenting all the projects that I’ve been working on, but I ran out of steam when my blinds automation project got put on hold. I still have every intention of getting back to it.

        • XO says:

          I was hoping to just put together a nice, consolidated list of all of the viable options for everybody- since, I couldn’t find a good list myself.

          HOPEFULLY- it helps a few people. I myself, have actually found quite a few nice products which are not as well-known.

  • Roger says:

    Nice writeup, have you looked at PiPowerMeter? https://github.com/crjens/PiPowerMeter

  • Nilek says:

    Saw you posts on the Emporia community site. I have a custom Vue that connects to my local MQTT server and it only provides current and total amp usage very second. Nothing else. The server side then converts the data to kWh.

    Check out https://www.minionlabs.tech. I believe that is the company that produces the hardware and initial software for Emporia. Emporia wants to use the data to provide similar services and are not interested in DIYers or providing local access, It’s too bad because they only need a couple of changes to their APP to do it.

    • XO says:

      It truly is a shame too, in my opinion. The hardware in their product is PERFECT for DIYers. I mean, it runs a ESP32 which doesn’t get more DIY friendly.

      My question- what was the level of effort to get it converted to just use local MQTT? I actually had one ordered, before I cancelled it and got the circuitsetup setup instead.

      • Nivlek says:

        Luck. They sent me a Vue with my local MQTT broker address info in a custom burn a couple years back when they where considering it. It would have required they to add a local address input into there APP. I’m still talking to them about it. I looked at CircuitSetup but back then it was $$$ and the board was always either being upgrade or out of stock.

        Did you look at Minionlabs.tech? That’s what Emporia wants to do , I believe.

        For some reason the Emporia Community site isn’t allowing me to post.

        • XO says:

          I noticed Circuitsetup was about to get some in stock, I ordered a few weeks ago and it has already shipped. The Iotawatt above also seems like an extremely attractive option matching the features of circuitsetup as well… at an even higher cost.

          Personally- my next option would have been the aeotec z-wave sensor, just to monitor the mains in a pretty easy fusion.Either that- or toss a shelly EM into my mains box for monitoring the incoming mains lines.

          From a price perspective, circuit setup is by far the cheapest option for monitoring Mains + 8 other 20amp circuits. The only other option viable for monitoring more circuits was the iotawatt, at its higher price point, without a native integration to Home Assistant. Edit- HOWEVER, as it is based on a ESP8266, it COULD be flashed to ESPHome, giving it native integration. https://github.com/boblemaire/IoTaWatt

        • That_Kid says:

          Oh that’s very interesting. I’ve been going over the Vue 2 board and they are using HC4501’s to multiplex the sensor data and that’s fed to a SAMD09 which looks like it talks to the esp32 over i2c. I plan on hooking to the bus and grab the data the SAMD09 sends to the ESP32. If I can just get firmware that’ll let me setup the address to my MQTT server that’ll be great too.

          • XO says:

            If you figure out something, lets document it so everybody can have a local-control vue. that would be nice.

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