Remember the good ol’ days when turning up the thermostat actually meant turning it up? Those days are almost gone, thanks to technology. New WiFi programmable thermostats are now affordable and easy to use (really)! Not only that, they can even save you money on your heating and cooling costs. But which one is right for you? Here are our choices for the 3 top WiFi thermostats:
#1 The Nest Learning Thermostat from Google
The pioneer – and arguably the most well-known name in WiFi thermostats – is The Nest learning thermostat. Offered by tech-giant Google, The Nest learns your habits and your temperature preferences, and adjusts itself according.
Once installed, The Nest immediately starts recording your first series of temperature settings, then its predictive programming takes over, so you eventually won’t have to adjust it at all. It automatically raises the temperature when you get out of bed, lowers it for bedtime, adjusts for the seasons, and more. Even if you’ve forgotten to manually set your system to “away” mode, The Nest system senses you’re out and adjusts temperatures accordingly. Note that if you still want some control, you can set it manually or adjust it through a computer or mobile app.
The Nest is all about saving money on your energy bill, and it has several programs to show that it does. You can access your energy-use history anytime using the mobile app. It also offers Leaf – an always-on program which helps you make environmentally friendly, money-saving choices. Every feature within The Nest that saves money is highlighted by a little leaf icon. That leaf icon turns green when you’re saving fuel or money and it dims when you are not.
What can you expect to pay for this high-tech home controller? The basic rate for a single unit is about $250; if you’re not installing it yourself, contact your HVAC professional for installation costs. You can also integrate it with other peripherals – such as a smoke detector, carbon monoxide detector, and security camera.
#2 The Ecobee3 from Amazon
Online merchandising icon Amazon has thrown its hat into the WiFi thermostat ring with the Ecobee 3 – and it’s quite the contender.
Ecobee3 also offers learning technology to keep your indoor temperatures at optimum levels, adjusting to your wake/sleep/home/away schedules. Unlike The Nest system, however, Ecobee3 uses remote sensors to detect whether you’re home or not – or just in the other room – saving money on your energy bills. Using the system’s “follow me” feature and remote sensors, Ecobee3 knows your location within your house and adjusts the temperature. Yes, you can adjust the temperature manually on the wall unit or through an app on your phone or computer, just like you can with The Nest. But the Ecobee3 is designed to integrate with Amazon’s voice-controlled technology, known as Echo. Using a simple voice command, you can adjust the temperature or engage other devices, such as a fan, without moving a finger. (You can get The Nest to work with Echo, too, just not quite so seamlessly.)
The Ecobee3 offers a dashboard so you can see anytime how it’s adjusting the temperature for you to save you money. How much money can you expect to save money with the Ecobee3? The average cost of the unit plus one sensor is around $250. Occasionally, you can get significant savings if you order the thermostat using Amazon’s Echo system. But these deals are usually limited-time, limited-supply offers. So, you’ll have to act fast to snap one up.
#3 The WiFi Smart Thermostat from Honeywell
Last, but not least, there is a WiFi programmable thermostat from a company known for making thermostats – albeit the round, manually-operated ones of our childhood. The Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat from Honeywell offers a bright, easy-to-read screen, along with easy-to-set programming. It may not be the most high-tech offering on the market, but for most homes and users, it does the job well.
With a few simple questions, the Honeywell thermostat will have a seven-day schedule programmed for you (that you can tweak at any time) down to the hour. The screen shows the indoor temperature, relative humidity, outdoor temperature and humidity, and more. Plus, you can adjust the color to fit your tastes or your décor. You can control the thermostat via mobile app, and the thermostat does learn some things about your activities over time. The thermostat will notify you of extreme temperature changes, and even lets you know when you should change the air filter in your furnace for optimal efficiency.
While it doesn’t offer quite as many bells and whistles as The Nest and the Ecobee3, it does offer a more affordable price, typically in the $180 range. So, you’ll save money up front AND on your heating and cooling costs.
Choosing the thermostat that’s right for you really comes down to a matter of personal preference, comfort, and budget. Technophiles will probably love The Nest or Ecobee3, but they’ll have to pay a bit more for all the features. If you just want significantly better-than-basic thermostat – one with some WiFi features, but you’re not ready for a full-tech HVAC immersion – the WiFi Smart Thermostat might be a better choice for you.
Questions? We Have Answers
Do you have questions about WiFi thermostats? We’ve got answers. If you’re in Adrian, southeast Michigan, or northwest Ohio, contact Blissfield Heating and Plumbing or give us a call at (517) 486-3575. Contact us today!
8593 E US Hwy 223
Blissfield, MI 49228
Phone: (517) 486-3575