Set it & Forget it: How Smart Thermostats Work Hard While Using Less Energy

Set it & Forget it: How Smart Thermostats Work Hard While Using Less Energy Energy Federation Incorporation EFI | Energy Federation Incorporation

By now everyone has heard about smart thermostats and how they’re better and more energy-efficient than that old thermostat that has been installed in your home or apartment ever since you moved there. Sure, having the latest smart thermostat hooked up to your phone and running on your Wi-Fi is cool and all but do you sometimes wonder what the fuss is all about? HOW do these thermostats save you energy and money? WHAT is it that they actually DO?

Welcome to our smart thermostat guide! Here we will walk you through the features of a smart thermostat to help you better understand how they work to help you save energy and money in your everyday life.

Essentially, smart thermostats are loaded with features that make it easy to save energy. At the surface, they eliminate confusing programming, adapt to your preferred heating and cooling schedule, and can be controlled from anywhere using a smartphone – but what else can they do?

Pop quiz time! If your thermostat maintains a comfortable temperature in your home, even when nobody's there to appreciate it, does it needlessly bloat your utility bills? Unfortunately, yes! Most people have felt the dread of opening a pricey bill as the result of maintaining optimal temperatures in an empty home. Sounds silly, right?

smart thermstats such as ecobee and google nest help you save energy

Smart thermostats are a simple solution to this situation and share the following features:

  • Learning Ability: thermostats with learning ability will automatically adjust settings based on your personal preferences and schedule, resulting in increased savings over time.
  • Occupancy Sensing: Thermostats with occupancy sensing technology go into an energy-saving mode when no one is present, so you never have to worry about turning the thermostat down when you leave. Occupancy sensors may be integrated or separate, depending on the model.
  • Geofencing: Geofencing uses your connected smartphone to determine your location and make thermostat adjustments accordingly. When you are away, energy-saving mode is enabled. When you return, your thermostat turns back up.
  • Smart Sensors: Remote temperature sensors allow the thermostat to determine the temperature in the rooms where the sensors are placed, not just where the thermostat is located. This helps customize comfort in every room. Smart sensors are sold separately but are included in some models.

That’s right! Many smart thermostats today have the ability to detect if someone is in the room or not and will adjust the temperature accordingly. They also memorize your habits, learn what your preferences are by the adjustments you make, and create a personalized schedule that fits your needs. It’s like having a quiet assistant available at all hours of the day (and night)!

Cool…what else? Well, there’s more:

  • App Alerts: When connected to a thermostat's app, you can getapp alerts on your phone from your smart thermostat helpful reminders and alerts sent to your phone. Get reminded when it's time to replace your furnace filters or get notified when extreme temperatures are sensed, indicating your furnace may be malfunctioning.
  • Energy Reports: energy usage reports show you how much energy you've used and teach you how to use less.
  • ENERGY STAR Certified: ENERGY STAR thermostats have been independently certified to deliver energy savings. These are the smartest of the Wi-Fi thermostats available and include top-of-the-line features to help you manage your energy use.

The above means you are always in the know, up to speed, and aware. Your app alerts keep you posted from wherever you are – at the office, on vacation, you name it! Security is important when you’re away and the ability to receive alerts or even just check to make sure everything is functioning properly can put you at ease.

Receiving reports that show you how you’re using energy is also extremely insightful and educational. It can open your eyes to how your energy is being used and help you change your routine to start saving energy instead. It’s empowering to have reports like these available at your fingertips.

So what do you say? Ready to upgrade to a smart thermostat? Your utility company may even offer them at a discounted rate!

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