Programmable thermostats were once hailed as leading-edge energy savers for home heating and cooling. The idea behind this seems straightforward: Set a schedule for different temperatures at different times based on your family’s patterns. For example, if the house is empty during the day, program the thermostat to deliver lower levels of heating or cooling without sacrificing comfort.
Do programmable thermostats live up to their promise?
Overall, the expected energy savings do not pan out. Studies show that compared with manual thermostats, programmable thermostats can actually lead to increased energy consumption. How could that be? Human error.
Researchers found that a majority of homeowners either do not program the thermostat correctly, fail to use all of the thermostat’s features, or base their programming decisions on wrong assumptions about how HVAC works. Because of this, programmable thermostats are not Energy Star certified.
Enter the Nest thermostat that learns.
The Nest Learning Thermostat eliminates human error by programming itself. Using sensors and other sophisticated technology, it learns your household’s preferences and routines and adjusts heating and cooling schedules accordingly. This is a game-changer for energy savings.
Independent studies show that this (very) smart thermostat cuts heating bills by an average of 10% to 12% and cooling bills by 15%. In fact, it is the first thermostat to earn Energy Star certification.
Other great features of the Nest Learning Thermostat include:
- Daily and monthly energy-usage reports, so you can see the energy savings for yourself and find opportunities for improvement
- HVAC monitoring that alerts you to potential issues with your heating or cooling system
- Compatibility with 95% of home heating and cooling systems
Is human error undermining energy savings in your home?
Unless you are certain you’re using your programmable thermostat correctly, it’s time to switch to a Nest. We recommend going one step further in eliminating human error by having your Nest Smart Thermostat installed by a licensed HVAC company. Any of the techs at Comfort Zone Heating & Cooling would be happy to also show you how to use the Nest system to maximize your benefits.
And here’s a helpful tip: To avoid paying for a service call just for your new thermostat, simply plan to have it installed during a scheduled HVAC repair or maintenance visit.