Upgrading Your Home Thermostat

The average thermostat survives about 10 years before needing an upgrade. New thermostats offer greater control and less power consumption for all times of year, from your AC unit to heating your home during winter. You’ll definitely see a difference in your utility bills. If it’s time to pick out a new thermostat for your home, we have some tips for you plus a round-up of our favorite new models.

Tips for Upgrading Your Home Thermostat

Check The Voltage Of Your HVAC System

Your thermostat connects to your HVAC system, therefore, your thermostat must be compatible. Most smart thermostats you’ll find nowadays are only compatible with low voltage (24v) HVAC systems. Heating systems that are called central heat or central air are usually low voltage systems. Line voltage systems are usually not compatible with today’s smart thermostats.

If you’re only replacing your thermostat, you should make sure that your thermostat and HVAC system will work effectively together.

Check Your HVAC Wiring

If you upgrade to a smart thermostat, you should know that a smart thermostat uses your wifi connection, and may draw more electricity than traditional thermostats. The smart thermostat makes up for it by running your system more efficiently, but it will likely require a different type of wiring and more wires at that. A c-wire is a common one. If you’re unsure if you have the correct wiring for an upgrade, there’s no shame in calling a pro for a quick consultation.

Photograph Your HVAC System Before Making Changes

If only technology was always easy to install… It’s not though. In the event that installing your new thermostat system doesn’t work out, photos of the old system will help you put the old one back together.

Consider Hiring An HVAC Pro

In an effort to save money, many homeowners are doing their best to conquer handyman projects and D-I-Y as much as possible. If you’re comfortable with your ability to install a new thermostat, more power to you. But if you would like a little extra assistance, there’s no shame in hiring a professional to help you out. The peace of mind is worth every penny. You may even find it would be worth your while to install a heat pump!

Smart Thermostats

Every year, technology gets more innovative and old technology becomes less common. The older generation and mercury-based thermostats have become obsolete and smart thermostats have taken over the market. And for good reason.

Some smart thermostats have feature controls to turn off the heat and A/C in unoccupied rooms and even detect which rooms are unoccupied. This will cut down your utility bill. Many smart thermostats are even able to communicate with your Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple Home. They can learn the movement and heating patterns of your home to regulate electrical consumption.

The EcoBee Smart Thermostat

The EcoBee Smart Thermostat looks like it’s straight out of a SCI-FI film. This voice-controlled thermostat is even Amazon-Alexa compatible and can communicate with Alexa without needing the Echo. You can ask it anything from telling you a joke, singing a song, and most relevantly, to telling you the weather forecast. It also comes with a sensor you can place in rooms to monitor the temperature and adjust according to your preferences. It can also detect if a person is in the room, and will not heat that room if no one is in there. It connects to your wifi, and it still functions while offline.

The Nest Learning Thermostat v.3

The Nest Learning Thermostat is easy to set up as far as smart thermostats go. CNET has called this thermostat the “Best-looking smart thermostat out there” for its old-school round design with a modern look. This thermostat has a large display with great resolution. Using Home/Away Assist, it can adjust your home’s temperature when your family is away. Unlike the EcoBee, the Nest Learning temperature sensors are sold as additional accessories.

Traditional Programmable Thermostats

Programmable thermostats don’t have as many bells and whistles as a smart thermostat. But they’ll still help you regulate your temperature and see what the temperature is in your home. They’re an affordable solution for those who don’t need all the extra capabilities.

The Orbit 83521 Clear Comfort Programmable Thermostat

The Orbit 83521 is an inexpensive thermostat that does exactly what you need: 1) Check the temperature of your home 2) Change the temperature of your home. You can program it to match the different days of the week with up to four different periods during the day. It’s easy to set up and works with a variety of different HVAC systems. Plus, it costs less than $50.

Honeywell RTH6360D1002/E Programmable Thermostat

Bringing it back to basics, no one does a programmable thermostat quite like Honeywell. You can program it specifically for the weekdays and the weekend like most programmable thermostats. It has an easy-to-read digital screen and looks nice with most home decor. But for an added bonus, this thermostat will send you alerts when you need to change your air filter.

J.A. Bertsch

Speaking of hiring a pro, look no further than J. A. Bertsch Heating & Cooling. We are happy to help with installation and repairs, and we stock an assortment of the best brands available. For the most trusted heating services in North Idaho call the professionals at (208) 635-5480.

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