Is a smart thermostat right for me?
Most smart thermostats require a fairly sizeable up-front investment, so take the time to determine if a “smarter” system will yield significant savings in your home before making the switch.
Begin by being honest with yourself about your daily habits. If you often forget to set your programmable thermostat or tend to leave your AC running all day, opting for a smart thermostat will allow you to realize energy savings without making changes to your daily routine – meaning you won’t have to rely on your memory to shrink your footprint.
But if you already use a programmable thermostat to power down your system when you’re not home, don’t expect a smart thermostat to make huge difference in your energy consumption, Daken says.
“If you’re already setting back your HVAC when you are not home, you’ve already garnered most of the energy savings that you can get,” Daken says. “So, investing in something new and expensive is probably not going to help a lot.”
“The savings is from choosing not to cool a home that’s unoccupied, and anybody can do that,” she continues. “All these other tools, these fancy thermostats, are just a way of making it easier.”
If you’re a renter or simply don’t have room in your budget for a thermostat upgrade, check out Energy Star’s guide to heating and cooling efficiently – which will help you cut back no matter what your budget.
Homepage Image: Nest® Labs