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Tips for Choosing a Programmable Thermostat

April 12, 2016

heat

Thermostats have come a long way over the years. They are now available with a wide variety of features designed to improve indoor comfort and increase energy efficiency of your HVAC equipment! While manual thermostats are still available, programmable thermostats can not only make your life easier, but also save you money in the long run. A programmable thermostat can make a huge difference in your heating and cooling bills, allowing you to adjust the temperature in your home based on whether or not you are home, awake, sleeping, or running a fireplace.

Types of Programmable Thermostats

A manual thermostat may costs less upfront than a programmable one, but it doesn’t offer the same long-term savings. Programmable thermostats allow you to heat or cool your house only when you really need to. You can set the temperature based on the time of day, or the day of the week, and some of the more advanced models can even switch between heating and cooling. When it comes to the schedule, there are generally three different types of programmable thermostats: 7-day, 5-2 day, and 5-1-1 day.

7-Day

A 7-day programmable thermostat allows you to set the temperatures in your home for each day of the week. These units are convenient for families with variable schedules and allow for maximum efficiency. With a 7-day unit you can set your home’s heating or air to turn on and off at a different time each day of the week, and never have to change it.

5-2 Day

A 5-2 thermostat allows you to set the thermostat for one schedule during the weekdays, and another schedule on the weekends. These models are great for families with predictable schedules, such as those who work a 5-day workweek and have off on weekends. However, if you work some days form home or if some of your shifts are night shifts, you will get better customization with the 7-day thermostat.

5-1-1 Day

And, finally, a 5-1-1 thermostat allows you to set the temperature for the weekdays, and then have different settings for Saturday and Sunday. Keep in mind that the 5-1-1 setting is typically tied to weekends and weekdays in thermostat settings. So if you work Friday through Tuesday and then have Wednesday and Thursday off, this thermostat won’t work for you.

Best Thermostat Options for your Home

Budget and lifestyle are the best determining factors when selecting a thermostat for your home. A programmable thermostat can save you up to 33% on your heating bill in the long run, and up to 25% on your cooling. If you like the sounds of these savings and appreciate the ease of use, then going with a programmable kind is a no-brainer. But which one should you pick?

Naturally, the 7-day thermostat offers the most flexibility. If your schedule differs from day to day (or if you work odd days and hours), then you will need the ability to customize each day’s heating and cooling settings. If your weekends and weekdays are more or less predictable, then 5-2 or 5-1-1 thermostat will do the trick for you. No matter which model you choose, make sure it is compatible with your current HVAC system! One of our experienced Maryland HVAC contractors will be happy to help you with that.

Other Features to Consider

While the type of schedule is probably the most important part of your programmable thermostat, don’t forget to examine the full list of features. Some of them may be important to you, based on your habits and lifestyle. Consider whether it would make your life easier if your thermostat had:

  • Voice commands
  • Smartphone integration
  • Digital touchscreen
  • Vacation settings
  • Reminders to change air filters
  • Adaptive response technology

No matter what your specific needs are, our team at Cool Breeze are experts in heating and cooling, and would love to help you determine which unit is best for your home’s heating and cooling system and your family’s comfort. Give us a call today!

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