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Thermostats: Basic to High Tech…The Choice is Yours!
February 21, 2013
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Remember when it was a simple task to buy a child a toy?  The biggest choice in deciding on a doll, for example, was the clothes it was wearing.  My niece asked for a doll for Christmas, but it was a specific doll that could crawl, laugh, cry, eat and need a diaper change.  I looked at dolls for what seemed to be an eternity before finally deciding on one.

Believe it or not, you might feel the same way when you look at thermostats today!  Most thermostats are digital.  Outside of that, there are lots of options to choose from.  To make it a little less overwhelming, check out our feature breakdown below to help you make the best choice for your home or office:

Basic Thermostat:   A basic digital thermostat will accurately control the temperature in your home or office.  This type of thermostat has buttons which can move the temperature up and down.  It is not programmable so the buttons are used to manually change the temperature as needed.  It’s ideal to have a thermostat that shows two readings:  a set temperature (what you want it to be) and an inside temperature (what it actually is).

Programmable Thermostat:  A programmable thermostat is a digital thermostat designed to allow the user to set programs to control the temperature of the house or office.  There are two types of programmable thermostats:

  • 5/2 Programmable:  This type of programmable thermostat allows Monday-Friday to be set on one program and Saturday-Sunday to be set on another program.  This is a great option for people who have a set work schedule Monday-Friday.  Here is a sample program for a 5/2 thermostat:  6am temperature set to 70 degrees (comfortable when you wake up in the mornings).  8am-5pm temperature set to 65 degrees (lower temperature when no one is home to save on utility costs) 5pm-11pm temperature set to 70 degrees (comfortable while at home).  11pm-6am temperature set to 67 degrees (save on utility costs while sleeping).  A different program could then be set for Saturday and Sunday when you are home during the day.
  • 7-Day Programmable:  This type of programmable thermostat allows a different program to be set every day of the week.  This is a great option for people who have flexible work schedules.  You may work from home one day, volunteer at your child’s school one day and work in an office one day.  This type of programming allows each day to be scheduled according to your time at home and away.

There are some additional differences to these types of programmable thermostats.  A 7 day often has a touchscreen, whereas a 5/2 programmable will have buttons.  Some thermostats may also show the indoor humidity level.  This is a great feature to quickly know if you need to adjust your humidifier.

Wi-Fi Thermostat:  This is a digital, programmable thermostat which has Wi-Fi capability so the thermostat can be controlled through a phone, tablet or computer.  This is a great option for people who travel or for those that simply enjoy having the latest technology!  Additional features available on a Wi-Fi thermostat compared to a programmable thermostat include weather forecast, humidity control (meaning the humidifier can be controlled through the thermostat), usage charts, and alerts.  HVAC equipment manufactures are even offering Wi-Fi thermostats that can communicate with high efficient equipment.  One of the biggest benefits to this is an alert that will be emailed to you if there is a problem with the system.

Technology has come a long way!  What’s the best fit for you?  We install all types of thermostats so please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have questions!