We’ve been fielding a lot of questions about smart thermostats lately. And for good reason. These devices, which boast convenient indoor climate control, have generated a lot of buzz in recent years. But before you splurge on an upgrade, consider the following FAQs to determine if you’ll benefit from the thinking thermostat.
Can a smart thermostat actually save me money?
Short answer: Possibly.
Long answer: The savings you can experience depend on several factors. Let’s break them down.
If you’re a miser with heating and cooling costs -- you use your HVAC system sparingly and you never forget to adjust the thermostat before you leave or go to bed -- then the smart thermostat likely doesn’t offer enough additional savings to make it worth the upgrade.
If, however, you’re like most people -- you’re forgetful and you cherish your comfort -- a smart thermostat can trim your energy bill significantly. Some brands boast as much as 18% annual savings on your heating and cooling. How? The smart thermostat automates temperature settings by learning your daily routine. This maximizes savings while you’re away, by throttling down to a more economical temperature, and maintains your desired comfort level while you’re home.
Is a smart thermostat right for me?
If you’re content with your old analog thermostat, you need a bunch of bells and whistles, then a smart thermostat won’t benefit you in any tangible way.
However, if you consider yourself a tech geek, you’ll love the customization and convenience of a Wi-Fi connected smart thermostat. Features vary across brands, but all of them can be operated remotely via mobile app, allowing you to monitor temperatures from afar and adjust as needed. Plus, some models provide detailed reports showing how much energy your HVAC system is using so that you can tweak for additional savings.
Will a smart thermostat integrate with my existing smart-home system?
Most will integrate with voice-control assistants, such as Google Home and Amazon Alexa, but not all brands are compatible with all smart-home systems. So, be sure to do your research.
Can I install a smart thermostat myself?
Most new homes have the required C-wire to connect a smart thermostat, in which case it could be a simple DIY job. However, older homes will require a minor electrical retrofit. That’s a job that should be handled by a professional.
Bottom line: Smart thermostats are slick and convenient, but they’re not for everyone. If you have more questions about smart thermostats or other HVAC upgrades, we’re happy to help. Contact Kern Heating & Cooling at (847) 383-0350.