Are programmable thermostats worth the cost?

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June 1, 2011

Programmable Thermostats

Q: Tammy I’m a single guy and don’t spend much time at home, would it be worth it for me to have a programmable thermostat installed?

A: I should just pinch your hinny hard for asking such a question.  A programmable thermostat is ideal for people who are away from home a lot or have a set schedule.  According to the Department of Energy you would save about 10% on your heating and cooling bill which is around $180 on an average home per year.

There are several different types and styles.  You can program for five to seven days depending on your schedule.  You can program for energy savings temperatures while you are away and asleep.   The new digital screens are easy to program and read.  I have the latest and greatest in my house with a remote control that even tells me the outdoor temperature, humidity and when to change my air filter.  My recommendation is Honeywell products for their longevity and reliability.

Know before you buy:

You can buy programmable thermostats on line, or at your local home improvement store.  They do come with installation instructions and many have live tech support if you need help.  You may need to purchase according to the type of heating and cooling system you have (gas, electric, heat pump or single or two stage), because that effects your wiring.  Some thermostats will work with any type of system; you just need to program and wire accordingly.  Be sure to read the box carefully before you purchase.

Price Matters:

This is where you get what you pay for.  The cheaper the thermostat, the fewer features you will get possibly making it less user friendly and not as accurate.  Some manufacturers do not sell their top models to the public, only to contractors.  However, contractors and technicians install these thermostats and program them every day so they may give you access to a better selection and save you some aggravation depending on how handy you are.


Tammy Technician

(Picture courtsey of Google Images.)

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