So you have decided to swap out your old thermostat with a new smart device?
Great! Smart thermostats like Z-Wave Thermostats can not only make your life comfortable but also help you in saving a considerable amount of money on the energy bills.
Before you buy a new smart thermostat, you need to focus on some essential factors. Here in this article, we have highlighted 7 things that you need to consider before replacing your old thermostat with a smart one.
Keeping these things in mind will reward you with ease of installation, as well as an appropriately working system.
1. Check Whether the System is 24V or Low Voltage
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Most of the smart thermostats available in the market like Ecobee, Nest, and Honeywell are compatible only with a 24V or low voltage HVAC system. It is ideal to check it before ordering a smart thermostat.
Systems with 24V or low voltage are often termed as central air or central heat, so it will be easy for you to determine.
Pro Tip: Check whether you have a multi-zone thermostat or a single-zone device. Consider walking to the garage or the basement where the furnace is installed. In case you have a heater pair for every room. Most probably, you are using a system with line voltage, which is not compatible with smart thermostats.
Still struggling to determine which HVAC system do you have? We suggest calling an HVAC professional onboard!
2. Decide which Type of Thermostat will be best for you
Smart thermostats are available in a multitude of options like some have geofencing and other advanced features. It is entirely up to you and your preference. You can decide the type of device based on the features it offers like programming, automatic temperature, auto changeover, reminders, and smart app notifications.
3. Look For the Wires
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So you have checked, and the HVAC system is compatible with the smart thermostat you are buying?
Excellent! But before placing the order, you need to check whether you have enough wires to install the new thermostat. Most of the latest smart devices like Nest require a C-wire to supply a continuous source of power.
A smart thermostat needs all-time Wi-Fi connectivity, so it is indispensable to have a C-wire for a successful installation.
On the other hand, if you don’t have a C-wire connection, then you can install the thermostat by following this procedure: How to Install a Wi-Fi Thermostat Without a C-Wire. Otherwise, calling a professional is always an option.
4. Take Pictures of the Entire Installation Process
If you have decided to install the thermostat on your own, then it is wise to take the pictures of the whole installation process step by step. Taking pictures will make it easier for you to identify if you have missed something in-between the process.
Moreover, you should take the pictures while disassembling the old thermostat, so that you can install it again if the new device doesn’t work.
5. A Stable Wi-Fi Connection Is Indispensable
Nowadays, most of the houses are backed up with stable and fast internet connection. But if you don’t have one, then you need a stable and fast working internet connection. Smart thermostats have mobile application connectivity and geo-fencing, but you need a stable connection to enjoy these features.
6. Consider the Shape of the Wall
You are swapping your old thermostat with a new and advanced one, but the wall mount is still the same.
Pay attention to the condition of the wall as the paint or the wallpaper can come off during the process. And installing a thermostat can attract a wall repair project that can cost you some more bucks.
Many manufacturers ship wall plates with their smart thermostats so you can attach this plate to hide away the mismatched or damaged paint.
In case you are not satisfied with the wall plate, then you need to plan for a wall repair.
7. Have a Wire Stripper/ Cutter Handy
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Wires connected with thermostats are fragile and prone to damages. It is better to have a cutter handy so that you can stripe off the unwanted wires for a neat and tidy installation. Yes, you can consider using a pair of scissors, but having the right tool by your side makes the job even hassle-free.
Test It Out
Now it is time to test the new thermostat. Check whether all the features and app connectivity is working fine or not. If you notice something irrelevant or fishy, then it is vital to call a professional HVAC on the go.
A professional can help you by servicing the HVAC system, installation of C-wire, switching the position of your thermostat, and can cross-check the existing wiring of your home.
Switching to a smart thermostat is an excellent decision if you want to get rid of the hassles of using a manual one.
Before you commence the installing process, it is better to go through the instruction manual! Also, make sure to use all the safety measures, including rubber gloves, to ensure safety against current issues.
Guest article written by: Sam is the senior researcher and writer for RobotsJudge.com. He is a full-time professional writer who spends most of his time covering the real-world impact of smart home technologies on consumer’s lives around the world. He is a full-time writer and when not writing he is traveling and playing rugby.