13 Reasons to Invest in a Smart Thermostat
Modern smart thermostats are sophisticated devices that give you greater control over heating, air conditioning, ventilation, indoor air quality and other aspects of your home or business. The U.S. DOE and EPA certify smart thermostats via the Energy Star program and recommend them broadly, as the average household will reduce its heating and cooling costs by 8% annually.
Reason #1: Smart Thermostats Pay for Themselves
A smart thermostat certainly costs more than a basic digital thermostat, and homeowners may wonder if that additional initial cost is really worth it. From a purely financial perspective, the answer is yes in nearly all cases. Even if your household is at the low end of realistic savings, you will easily recoup your investment over the 10 years or more that most units will last. You may also be eligible for an energy rebate that helps offset the additional expense, and there are, of course, a wide range of benefits beyond just the dollars and cents.
Reason #2: Reduce Your Energy Consumption
Most homes and businesses can reduce energy consumption enough not only to pay for the initial expense of the device but to achieve a real return on that investment. Consumers not only lower their monthly energy bills but reduce their overall carbon footprint. This is made possible through automatic temperature adjustment but also through energy profiles and better zone control.
Reason #3: Program Your HVAC System
Not all programmable thermostats are smart thermostats, but all smart thermostats are programmable. What it means to program a thermostat in the most basic sense is to define a schedule. You can set the temperature to adjust automatically based on the day of the week but also the month. In addition, many modern smart thermostats go beyond basic scheduling and offer advanced energy profiles that give you granular control over the various heating and cooling zones that make up your home.
Reason #4: Have Your Schedule Evolve Via Machine Learning
Another exciting aspect of the modern smart thermostat is that it can learn over time. In fact, the more information that it has gathered, the better it can fine-tune the temperature control of your home. When you first configure your smart thermostat, you will program a schedule that you think reflects your needs accurately. As those scheduled times get more precise as the system learns your routine, you will enjoy even greater energy savings.
Reason #5: Better Prepare for Extreme Weather
Many thermostats now receive real-time climate data, and this is useful because your system can actually save you money and keep your home more comfortable by adjusting it proactively. Consider a scenario in which a cold front is moving in, and your thermostat is able to begin increasing the heat gradually rather than as a response to a sudden temperature drop.
Reason #6: Track Your Energy Usage
A smart thermostat tracks your energy consumption and lets you monitor it in real time. It also collects that information and stores it in a database. You can access that data as is, but many smart thermostats are able to generate reports. This is useful because it provides you a view of where your energy losses are occurring, perhaps due to household behavior or maybe because of an issue with the home.
Reason #7: Control Your HVAC Via Voice Commands
Although your smart thermostat is programmed and learning, you still have manual control over it, which is useful when you’re home and want to adjust it. Manual control doesn’t mean walking over to your thermostat anymore. Many units accept voice commands directly or can be controlled through Alexa and Google Assistant devices. Practically all of them support Wi-Fi and thus are controllable through smartphones, tablets and other devices.
Reason #8: Control Your HVAC System Via the Internet
Your connectivity options don’t end with your home. Since your smart thermostat is Wi-Fi capable, it’s connected to your home network and, therefore, the internet. That means that whenever you have cellular or Wi-Fi access, you can monitor your home HVAC system and even control it.
Reason #9: Monitor Relative Humidity
Relative humidity (RH) is important in a number of ways. An optimal RH protects the home itself. It promotes a healthier environment, and it also affects how you perceive temperature. With an ideal RH, which does vary from person to person, you can feel comfortable at a higher temperature during summer and at a lower temperature during winter, and that helps you save even more. For this reason, most smart thermostats now have an RH sensor and display, and that feature becomes even more powerful when connected to dehumidification and humidification systems.
Reason #10: Monitor Indoor Air Quality
Relative humidity is just one aspect of indoor air quality (IAQ). IAQ in the home is a growing concern for many homeowners due to modern construction techniques and health warnings from the EPA. Smart thermostats with integrated IAQ monitors can detect and display the levels of particulate matter, volatile organic compounds, carbon dioxide and even radon. With this information, you’ll know if you have an IAQ problem, and if you choose to invest in air purification and mechanical ventilation systems, your smart thermostat can integrate with those as well.
Reason #11: Receive HVAC System Alerts
The ability of a smart thermostat to communicate via Wi-Fi and over the internet is bidirectional. That means that it can communicate with you. You can receive alerts when it’s time to check your HVAC filters or schedule HVAC maintenance, and in our earlier example, you could receive an alert that a cold front was moving in and that your system was increasing heating in the home in response to that event.
Reason #12: Schedule Preventative Maintenance Sooner
Modern HVAC systems have become quite sophisticated as well. Many systems can detect issues in their operation and indicate a warning before it develops into a more serious problem. In the past, you needed to be at the unit and decipher a pattern of flashing bulbs, but a smart thermostat provides you with a much more accessible interface and can alert you when your system needs servicing.
Reason #13: Expand Your Home’s Capabilities With Other Smart Devices
Smart devices can communicate with one another, and these capabilities let you enhance your home in many interesting ways. Consider a smart thermostat that opens your smart blinds in order to take advantage of natural sunlight or which decreases the temperature in a kitchen zone in order to reduce the workload on your refrigerator and freezer.
Your Local Thermostat Pros in Gilbert and Maricopa Counties
A/C Doctors has served homeowners and businesses throughout Gilbert and the surrounding areas for more than a decade. We’re happy to answer any questions that you may have about smart thermostats and to discuss the devices that may be ideal for your purposes. You can also count on us for the installation, maintenance and repair of residential and commercial heating, air conditioning, ventilation, ductwork, and indoor air quality systems. Call A/C Doctors today or contact us online to learn more about the products and services we offer or to schedule a service appointment or on-site consultation.