Programmable Thermostats & Smart Thermostats for Indianapolis Area Homes
Home thermostats range from simple manual units to sophisticated programmable thermostats and smart thermostat models. Which thermostat is best for your household depends on the type of heating and cooling system you have in your home, how you want to use your thermostat, and the features you want to use.
A thermostat is the “brain” of your home that keeps you comfortable, as it is in control of the HVAC systems. Based on your temperature setting, it regulates when your furnace, heat pump, or air conditioner turns on and shuts off, telling these systems if heating or cooling is needed to change the temperature inside the home. The way you adjust the temperature of the thermostat impacts utility costs of operating your HVAC system. Your thermostat also has a hand in how long your heating and cooling system will last – with control over system workload, a thermostat that is set with energy savings as a goal won’t operate as frequently, thus sparing the cooling unit and heating systems the wear and tear damage that ultimately leads to breakdowns and replacement. With a thermostat set to run back to back, system components wear out sooner.
Modern thermostats, even the most basic ones, are built with the latest technology for more accurate control over temperature, and therefore your comfort. New energy savings thermostats help homeowners save money and decrease heating and cooling bills by about 20%. Investing in a technologically advanced thermostat creates a more comfortable home now, and will save money over time.
Williams Comfort Air provides Central Indiana with expert installation and repair for thermostats of all types. If you’re having trouble with your existing thermostat or are just ready to upgrade to a new model, contact us today.
Types of Thermostats
Thermostats fall into three basic categories, as follows:
- Manual thermostats
- Programmable thermostats
- Smart thermostats
Manual thermostats offer the most basic control over a home’s temperature levels. Manual thermostats do not provide advanced temperature controls such as the ability to automatically adjust the temperature, humidity sensors, or other features found on some digital thermostats.
A typical manual thermostat has a toggle switch between cool / heat and off positions. Manual thermostats are typically found in older homes. They’re economical with simple controls, but they do not include the automatic features that work to generate effortless energy savings, as do the programmable thermostat and the smart thermostat or learning thermostat. A manual thermostat is capable of controlling the heating and cooling units efficiently if you’re diligent about manually changing settings based on your daily schedule.
Programmable thermostats have many convenient features that automate changes in temperature to help users save energy. Models offer specific schedules for programming temperature adjustments throughout the week, and most typically allow up to four temperature changes over the course of a day.
- A 1-week programmable thermostat allows one set of temperature adjustments that are applied every day of the week. This is the most basic scheduling available and runs the same pattern on each day. This model is appropriate in households where the schedule remains consistent each day.
- A 5-2 programmable thermostat allows one set of schedules to run over five consecutive weekdays and a second set of schedules to run over two weekend days. Homeowners who keep a consistent weekly schedule and their weekend days are similar will find this model suitable for their needs.
- A 5-1-1 programmable thermostat allows a set of schedules that run over the five days of the week and separate schedules for each weekend day, so a total of three unique daily schedules in all. Many users prefer having the option to program weekend schedules personalized for each day as their activities vary in the home from one day to another.
- A 7-day programmable thermostat allows users to set a unique temperature program for each day of the week. If your schedule changes from day to day, this may be the best option for you.
Various programmable thermostat models include feature options that allow you to control and check your home’s temperature, humidification, dehumidification, ventilation, and air filtration all from the thermostat. Some models also send maintenance reminders, alerting you when filters, UV bulbs, and humidifier pads need to be serviced or replaced. However, simpler models that are not so packed with numerous convenience features are also available.
Programmable thermostats are convenient and practical for today’s fast‐paced lifestyles. These thermostats offer users automatic control over temperature adjustments. When set wisely, they have the ability to save you up to 33% on annual heating and cooling bills.
The benefits, comfort, and savings potential of a smart thermostat that is compatible with your furnace and air conditioner is second to none. Smart thermostats take control over temperature changes, ultimately learning your preferences and household habits in order to select set points that offer the best energy savings without compromising your comfort. Geofencing technology ensures your home will always be at the perfect temperature when you arrive after a long day. If ever needed, you are able to remotely control the thermostat settings. With a Wi-Fi connection and mobile app, you don’t even have to be home! Some models even offer voice control, so you don’t even have to lift a finger.
Smart thermostats are convenient, easy to use, and save money as they reduce the amount of energy consumed to heat and cool your home. This advanced thermostat technology focuses on energy conservation in ways beyond selecting energy efficient temperatures – it also monitors the performance of your home HVAC systems and their energy use. When spikes in energy consumption or different operating conditions detected, the thermostat alerts you of the issue so service can be completed without delay – also beneficial to reduce energy use!
Select smart thermostats are ENERGY STAR rated, which maximize the ways you can save energy. Some models interface with local utility programs offering incentives for the purchase and use of energy efficient products.
When to Replace a Thermostat
Home thermostats do not last forever. Over time, they lose precision, become damaged, or simply become outdated due to today’s ever-changing technology. While frequent replacement isn’t typically necessary, here are a few reasons you’d want to upgrade your thermostat.
- Old, outdated thermostats have a greater margin of error when reading room temperature, so it may shut off heating and cooling before the proper temperature is reached. Incorrect temperature readings can cause energy waste as well as discomfort.
- Thermostats need to be installed in an appropriate location, or else they do not perform as expected and may be damaged. If the thermostat is in direct sunlight or near a drafty area, it at least needs to be relocated by a professional, if not entirely replaced.
- If the thermostat has been damaged in any way, it should be replaced. They are sensitive to high temperatures, smoke, excessive humidity, and other extreme conditions, so replace the thermostat if your home was damaged by fire or flooding. Pest problems can also damage thermostats, especially the wiring hidden behind the wall.
- When you buy and install a new heating and cooling system, it is definitely time to replace your thermostat. Replacing the thermostat along with the heating and cooling equipment ensures the controls are properly matched for the system type. New equipment models may require a thermostat with features your current model does not have. Ask your technician for assistance in selecting a new thermostat that’s fit for the job.
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