It seems like it was just yesterday when the new, new thing was smartphones. But today, we’re talking smart homes, and the technology has exploded. Technology can now connect and automate almost anything in and around our homes; lighting, security systems, home appliances, and, of course, WiFi, or smart, thermostats. But this new generation of thermostats can do a lot more than just adjust your home’s indoor temperature. Here are some of the features that you’ll want to consider when conducting a smart thermostat comparison.
Basic to Advanced Features
By definition, a WiFi thermostat is able to be controlled remotely via the Internet. Most likely you’ll want to choose a model that lets you control it from your smartphone, tablet, and desktop. But not all models offer all three types of connectivity or work with all types of devices.
The other basic features are the thermostat’s ability to program and control your home’s temperature remotely. That includes being able to turn your heat up or down or your AC on or off from anywhere you have Internet access. But from there, smart thermostats can offer a broad range of other features, including:
- The ability to control zone heating and cooling.
- Adjusting your home’s humidity.
- Alerts that will notify you if your home’s temperature or humidity levels rise above or fall below desired levels.
- Providing feedback on your energy usage. Some models even have sophisticated reporting abilities and custom tips for helping you reduce energy usage and save on energy costs.
- Intelligent adaptability: The thermostat learns your usage patterns and automatically duplicates them for even greater energy savings.
Ease of Use and Compatibility
Not every WiFi thermostat has an intuitive app or interface to control it. In fact, some are downright confusing. To find one that works well for you, it’s a good idea to download apps for any thermostats you’re considering and check them out before you buy. You can also ask for a demo from local dealers.
You’ll also want to make sure the thermostats you’re looking at are compatible with your HVAC system. Some staged and modulating furnaces require a specific thermostat to control them. And some WiFi thermostats may require additional electrical power.
One final consideration in buying your new WiFi thermostat is the reputation and reliability of its manufacturer. It’s best to go with a well-known, national brand that offers local service if anything ever goes wrong.
At Stay Comfy, we recommend the Carrier Cor® thermostat. Not only does it have all the features listed above, it’s now compatible with Amazon’s Alexa, making it even easier to use than ever. Plus, if you’re interested in adding home automation, the Cor® thermostat is also compatible with the Cor® Home Automation system, which lets you monitor and control your entire home from a single app.