How Does a Smart Thermostat Save Money on Utility Expenses?

December 07, 2020

Keeping your Hamilton home cozy can eat up a lot of money. A typical homeowner spends about $172 on monthly utility bills, according to ENERGY STAR®, or about $2,060 each year. At least half of that is consumed by heating and cooling.

Many homes use programmable thermostats, but most people don’t take the time to program them. The process is annoying, detailed and only provides you limited options for desired temperatures. When your house stays at an identical setting throughout the day, it requires utilities and adversely affects your monthly expenses.

Smart thermostats learn from your day-to-day activities and adjust the temperatures to accompany it. But can having one really conserve money on heating and cooling? Yes, and here’s why.

Studies Show Smart Thermostats Reduce on Utility Costs

Independent studies show these devices can lead to major savings.

These studies included home heating and cooling costs in 41 states before and after putting in a Nest smart thermostat. Nest said the study found its thermostats can save up to 12% on heating and 15% on cooling, generating an approximated savings of $131 to $145 each year.

With the common smart thermostat costing between $100–$250, those savings can help it pay for itself. And the majority of local energy companies provide rebates for smart thermostats as they’re ENERGY STAR® certified.

How Does a Smart Thermostat Work?

After your smart thermostat is put in, you’ll initially program it just like any other thermostat. You’ll turn it up and down, so the thermostat can learn about your preferences. Then, it will start creating a program that helps you save money, whether you’re at your residence or gone. Since it geofences with your smartphone, you won’t have to put it on your list to adjust it when you exit or return.

Pros and Cons of Installing a Smart Thermostat

Pros

As we talked about before, smart thermostats provide many perks to your residence and energy bill, including:

  • No need to set—Your smart thermostat will adjust to your activities, so you don’t have to spend time using programs or remember to adjust it.
  • Knows when you get home and take off—Since a lot of smart thermostats geofence with your phone, your house will be put into an energy-efficient setting when you take off and be comfortable when you arrive.
  • Remote temperature supervision—You’ll be able to see your residence’s temp from just about anyplace, due to an app on your phone.
  • Supervise heating and cooling use—Many smart thermostats provide detailed data through their app, including how long you used heating and cooling on a certain day.
  • Reminders—Some smart thermostats will remind you of crucial maintenance tasks, such as when you’re due to change your air filter.
  • Added savings—Most local energy companies have rebates for smart thermostats, so call with yours for more info.

Cons

In spite of that, there’s several things you should take into account when thinking about adding a smart thermostat in your residence:

  • Compatibility—Subject to the type and age of your heating and cooling system, a smart thermostat might not be compatible. If you don’t know, it’s best to check with an HVAC specialist like Carefree Heating and Cooling, LLC. We also recommend having it professionally installed. This confirms that you have the correct number of wires and that it’s connected accurately. Some systems don’t include a common wire, which creates compatibility troubles with a smart thermostat. This wire energizes your thermostat, so if your residence doesn’t have a C-wire, we can add one.
  • Housing situation—If you own your house and are planning to reside there for many years, it’s a wise investment to have a smart thermostat. If you plan to move soon or rent, we suggest delaying unless you plan to take the thermostat with you. If you rent, you’ll usually need to secure your landlord’s permission first prior to putting in a new thermostat.
  • Cost—Smart thermostats cost more than programmable thermostats, and we suggest having yours professionally installed. However, the energy savings over its lifetime can help pay for itself.
  • Lifestyle—Does a family member work from home, or is someone often at the house? If so, you might not see as many savings, but you’ll have the perks of not needing to program or adjust a thermostat.

Rely on Carefree Heating and Cooling, LLC for Your Smart Thermostat Needs

At Carefree Heating and Cooling, LLC, our top goal is to keep your residence pleasant while helping you save on energy bills. If you’re thinking about installing a smart thermostat, our pros can help, from choosing the ideal model to expert installation. Give us a call at 513-268-5164 today to learn more.