How does a smart thermostat save you money?
Simply put, smart thermostats
save you money by reducing your energy consumption and the associated costs. Unless your old thermostat wasn’t working properly, a new thermostat – smart or not – isn’t going to save you money by its very nature. That said, a smart thermostat – in conjunction with its respective smart thermostat app – makes it significantly easier to thoughtfully monitor the temperatures in your home without compromising an inch on comfort. When things are easy, we’re much more likely to take advantage of them, and with the power to control your home’s temperature literally in your hands, it will take just a few moments to adjust when the house is empty.
Who isn’t likely to save money with a smart thermostat?
If someone is always home in your house, and no one is on-board with a cooler temp in the winter or warmer temp in the summer, you might not save as much as others because there will be no real “down time” for your heating and cooling. Similarly, if you have pets for whom a constant, comfortable temperature is essential, you won’t be able to dip energy usage much. That said, smart thermostats are a wonderful home improvement for most people, and are still worth considering even if there is always someone home. They are increasingly affordable and feature-packed, paying for themselves over time even with limited use.
Weather extremes matter
If you live somewhere with very hot summers or very cold winters, the potential to save more energy during off-hours is even greater than for those in a more temperate climate. Just be mindful not to go too low or too high, which can overwork your system as it tries to play catch up for your return. In addition to saving you money during times of extreme temperature, making use of a smart thermostat app
can also help you do your part to reduce the demands put on utility companies during these times. Many people might not be able to safely reduce their heat or cooling consumption, including those with new babies, or people with compromised health. Being a part of the energy solution helps ensure utility providers are able to keep up with the demands of those who truly need consistent temps throughout the whole day.
How smart is a smart thermostat?
The “smartness” of a smart thermostat varies from model to model, with many including advanced learning features that help them to better serve your needs over time. Don’t worry – this isn’t a case of the robots modeling our behaviors to take over Earth! In fact, it’s quite the opposite. It’s electronics helping to make the Earth a better place for humans and for the Earth itself by keeping us comfortable without wasting precious natural resources.
One learning feature your chosen thermostat might be programmed with is the ability to keep track of the changes you make, and when you make them, so it can pick up on patterns. Let’s say you always head out for dinner with friends on Thursday nights, and don’t need the house warmed up until 8pm instead of your usual 6pm return. A smart thermostat can start to notice this routine deviation in your typical schedule, and “ask” if you’d like to delay ramping up the heat or AC on Thursdays. Since it’s only once a week, you might not have thought to make the change yourself, but a couple hours here and there can really add up to serious cost and energy savings over time.
Another valuable feature your smart thermostat might offer is the ability to learn how long your home typically takes to be brought to the ideal temperature, bearing in mind the outside temp and conditions. This can vary quite a bit from home to home, and is dependent upon many things, including your type of heating, quality of insulation, age of windows, and of course, the size of the space. This means that unlike many home improvements, smart thermostats actually increase in value over time. Granted, their resale value might not increase, but the value they offer to you keeps climbing, while your energy costs keep going down!
The Power of a Smart Thermostat App
While it’s the smart thermostat
itself that gets most of the accolades, the accompanying app is a very valuable costar in this energy saving play. You know that familiar moment when an actor is giving a speech in an awards show and they list all the people they “couldn’t have done this without”? If smart thermostats won Academy Awards, chances are the first “person” they’d be thanking is the smart thermostat app that made it all possible.
Granted, the smart thermostat does indeed deserve much of the fanfare. But the app is what makes using it regularly so easy, with it learning more about you and your habits every step of the way. It’s the key to the car, so to speak, and a crucial component to making the most of the myriad features packed into your thermostat.
Ideal for Second Homes
Smart thermostats are ideal for second homes that are often empty, but still need to have regulated temperature. Whether you have a vacation home you only get to visit a few times each year, or split time more evenly between two locations, being able to control the temperature of your second home remotely can bring substantial savings, and valuable peace of mind.
Perhaps you’re already on the plane back when you think, “Oh no, I turned up the AC because I was hot when I got back from my run yesterday, but I never turned it back down!” Rather than the AC blasting for no one’s benefit until you’re back in town again, you can pull up your smart thermostat app and make adjustments on the fly.
The same goes for heating a home, as well. Maybe you have a second home near the slopes, and cranked up the heat once you got back from a long day of skiing. Lost in the cozy comfort the next morning, you headed out for the day (or week…or month!) without making the necessary adjustments. With your handy smart thermostat app, having to worry about remedying situations like these is a thing of the past. Just like your old thermostat.