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Smart vs. Programmable Thermostats – Which One Should You Get?

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Smart Home November 12, 2018
Arthur Brodskiy
Arthur Brodskiy

Ever arrive at work and realize you left your AC running or your heat blasting? In the old days of manual thermostats, you had to micromanage your home temperature. For the busy or forgetful, mismanaging manual thermostats meant higher utility bills every month– especially in places with extreme seasonal temperatures.

Today, programmable and smart thermostats give you more control, more precision and more savings.

Programmable Thermostats

With a programmable thermostat, you can schedule temperature changes throughout the day for every day of the week. That means less headaches and smaller utility bills.

Worried you left the heat blasting this morning? Programmable thermostats take that worry away. Which leaves you free to stress out about other things during your hour-long commute to the office.

But for the tech-savvy control-freaks of the world, simply having a thermostat that you can program for each day of the week won’t cut it. Enter the smart thermostat.

Smart Thermostats

Smart thermostats take what their programmable predecessors did and went a few steps further.

Living up to their names, some smart thermostats can actually learn from your heating and coolings habits. They can create a climate control schedule without any programming at all.

Not only that, smart thermostats are WiFi integrated, meaning you can adjust them and pull up data from any connected device. And the data is extensive – real-time energy costs, temperature, humidity, and even the status of your filters.

So Which Is Better?

When deciding between programmable vs. smart thermostats you should take a couple things into consideration.

First, consider the costs. Smart thermostats carry a hefty price tag compared to their programmable cousins. And while they save on average 8% per year on your heating and cooling costs, it can take a few years before the savings kick in. So if you’re planning on staying at your current home for awhile, you might want to splurge and go for the smart thermostat.

Also think about whether or not you need all the bells and whistles. Programmable thermostats give you a good level of control. If you don’t need to pull up their energy data or make adjustments remotely, programmable models might give you everything you need.

Either way you go, moving on from a manual thermostat to a smart or programmable model will save you time and money in the long run.

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