April 12, 2022

Your Comprehensive Guide to Smart Thermostat Installation

At Climate Control, we are Portland’s choice for the care and maintenance of heating and cooling equipment. Years of experience have taught us how thermostats are essential components of a home comfort system. These small units send the signal that tells your furnace or air conditioner to fire up. The latest generation of smart thermostats can perform this task while lowering your operating costs. However, before you turn on your new unit, you should consider the best strategy for installation.

The Benefits of Smart Thermostats

With traditional thermostats, you can only change the temperature manually. If a room is uncomfortable, you turn the dial or press a button to adjust the setting.

Programmable thermostats are more efficient. The thermostat can raise or lower the temperature based on predetermined settings. The most common setup is one set of temperatures for the work week and another for the weekend.

Smart thermostats use artificial intelligence to learn your home habits. When paired with a smartphone, some units can adjust the temperature when the phone comes within range of the house. Other thermostats learn your schedule of coming and going. You may initially set the thermostat to heat your home at 5:00 p.m. during the week, but the unit might discover that you actually arrive home at 5:30 most days. A half-hour less of heating each day will become significant energy savings over time.

System Requirements

Manufacturers design smart thermostats to work with other connected devices in your home. To get the best performance, you will need a wireless internet signal. You may also want a unit that works with other wireless technology. This integration will allow you to give voice commands through a smart speaker.

When you are away from home, you can access the thermostat through an app on your smartphone or tablet. When you leave on vacation, you can access the unit from any place with an internet connection. You should check your device to determine that it is compatible with the current version of the app.

C-Wire Concerns

The extra features of smart thermostats demand more power. Programmable thermostats run on battery power, but most smart thermostats power their touchscreens and Wi-Fi connections with a hardwired connection to a C-wire. This electric wire provides 24 volts to the system.

Unfortunately, if you are upgrading from an older thermostat or if you live in an older home, your wall connection may not have the necessary wire. For safety purposes, you should hire a professional electrician to install the C-wire.

Determining the Best Location

Upgrading your thermostat is an opportunity to determine whether your current unit is in the best location. Most homeowners rarely move their thermostats, so the present location may go back to an older system with fewer zones. If you are uncertain, our technicians can help you determine the right placement in any zone.

You want your thermostat located in the room of the zone where family members spend the most time. Your thermostat should measure and react to the ambient temperature in that room. The ideal placement will be on an interior wall with some distance from air vents, doors, and windows. Keeping the unit out of direct sunlight will also prevent false readings.

The Initial Settings

Once the thermostat is up and running, you will input your daily schedule. A programmable thermostat operates on a fixed schedule, but a smart thermostat is not so rigid. After you input the initial settings, it will learn from your actual behavior. The initial settings are what you think meets the needs of your family. The thermostat then analyzes data about zone usage, manual temperature adjustments, and room occupation. Learning this information gives you the most efficient temperature control possible.

Going on Vacation

When you are out of the house for an extended period, a smart thermostat is a helpful device. It is not unusual to leave for the weekend only to remember that you did not adjust the heating or cooling program. A few taps on your smartphone will prevent you from wasting fuel and power.

Portland’s Choice for Home Comfort

The experts at Climate Control want to give Portland, OR residents a comfortable home climate for every season. We specialize in the repair, maintenance, installation, and zoning of heating and cooling systems. We can also help with heat pumps, indoor air quality equipment, and ductless systems. To learn more about our services, contact Climate Control today.

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