What’s The Difference Between Smart And Programmable Thermostats?

What’s the Difference between Smart and Programmable Thermostats?

What’s The Difference Between Smart And Programmable Thermostats?

Nobody loves paying more than they absolutely have to for utilities. Want to know the #1 secret to saving money on your heating and cooling bills? Use less heating and cooling.

That doesn’t mean you have to be uncomfortable in your home, though! It only means you have to use your HVAC system to its maximum efficiency. And that starts with your thermostat.

Three Types of Thermostats

Thermostats come in three types: Manual, Programmable, and Smart.

Manual thermostats are the old-school type you run across in older hotels (or maybe your grandparents’ house.) They’re inexpensive, but they aren’t especially precise or energy efficient. To ensure the maximum efficiency of your HVAC unit, you have to manually adjust the settings every time you enter and leave your home.

Nowadays, most people have a programmable thermostat. You program the thermostat to output various temperatures throughout the day to maximize your savings and comfort. For example, when it’s warm outside, you can set your thermostat higher when you’re not home and lower in the evening. These electronic thermostats allow for customization, adaptation, convenience, and energy savings. They may cost more than their manual predecessors, but the savings are absolutely worth it!

Now here’s the really cool option. Smart thermostats are essentially programmable thermostats on steroids. If you’re looking for all the best features and then some—we’re talking self-learning and energy-use data galore—a smart thermostat is a way to go. You’re definitely going to pay for the extras, though; even the most basic models run about $250.

We’re going to guess (and strongly recommend) you don’t go for the manual thermostat. So how do you decide between the programmable and smart options? Keep reading.

Three Differences Between Programmable Thermostats and Smart Thermostats

1. Customization

Programmable thermostats allow for varying degrees of customization, depending on the model you choose:

  • 7-day models allow you to have a different schedule every day of the week.
  • 5+2 models have the same schedule for the 5-day work week and a different schedule for weekends.
  • 5+1+1 models provide the same schedule for the 5-day work week then different schedules for each weekend day.

Smart thermostats offer these same settings plus the ability to make adjustments on-the-go using a smartphone—even when you’re not home. Let’s say soccer practice went a little shorter than usual, but your kiddo worked up a real sweat. You can adjust the thermostat on your way home to give you the perfect temperature when you return!

Some smart thermostats are also self-learning—they can track movement in your home to figure out more specific patterns and schedules, automatically adjusting themselves as needed to keep you comfortable.

2. Cost

There’s a steep price difference between smart and programmable thermostats. A smart thermostat can easily set you back $250, while programmable thermostats are more in the range of $60 to $100.

So do smart thermostats result in a significantly more efficient system? Will you make up for the initial cost over time? Probably not. You can expect to save the same amount using a programmable or smart thermostat, meaning all that extra money is going toward bells and whistles, not energy efficiency.

3. Bells and Whistles

For some people, smart thermostats cross the thin line between futuristic and just downright creepy. If you’re uncomfortable with smart tech in your home, a programmable thermostat will serve you better!

Here’s another consideration: To get the full use of a smart thermostat, you’ll want to take advantage of features like energy reports and monitoring. If that’s not you, a smart thermostat probably isn’t the best choice.

Similarities Between Smart and Programmable Thermostats

Ultimately, depending on your budget and preferences, either thermostat will be a great upgrade to your home! Given their key similarities, it’s pretty hard to make the wrong decision.

You’ll experience nearly the same cost savings. If you use your thermostat to its full potential, you can expect to save 15 to 30% on your energy bills. ENERGY STAR gives a pretty thorough list of things to keep in mind to get the most from your thermostat.

The thermostat needs to be compatible with your home. Depending on the age of your home and the existing HVAC system, you might be limited in your options. Both programmable and smart thermostats need to be compatible with your HVAC system. Each thermostat should be professionally installed. Both smart and programmable thermostats should be installed by your Austin HVAC technician. Give us a call today!

HVAC contractor Austin, TX, can help you with fall HVAC maintenance. Hutto’s days are getting shorter as we are approaching the end of summer. And now is the time to schedule fall maintenance. It probably isn’t your favorite thing to schedule routine HVAC maintenance. However, HVAC maintenance is essential for heating systems to perform at their best, and fall is the perfect season for this. 

You may be wondering why fall is the best time for HVAC maintenance. Here are a few reasons: 

The Time Is Right for Repairs

Cooler months are ideal for scheduling HVAC system maintenance if you want your system to run at its best. Your system will have to work harder than necessary if you wait till spring when the temperature is already rising. Additionally, HVAC contractor Austin, TX, helps you prepare your HVAC system in advance for cold winter days.

Get Ready for Winter Season

It’s a good idea to conduct a maintenance check before winter, as the summer is coming to an end. Problems can arise anytime. However, a routine maintenance check allows any operational issues to be addressed ahead of time, rather than causing the system to fail in the middle of winter.

Grande Air Solutions can help your heating system get ready for winter with fall maintenance by repairing and cleaning its components. 

Prevent Toxic Gas Leakage

The maintenance of your HVAC system before winter will save you money while protecting your family from harmful gases, such as carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide poisoning can occur from leaky ducts if they are not repaired immediately. The presence of carbon monoxide in your home poses a serious health threat if you do not have a functioning carbon monoxide detector.

Carbon monoxide can be lethal if it leaks from your ductwork or furnace, which is why it’s crucial to have them repaired before winter begins. 

Clear Out Your Home Air 

You and your family will spend a lot more time indoors during the winter, which makes indoor air quality even more critical. You can ensure that your HVAC system is clean and debris-free this winter by scheduling maintenance with air conditioning repair Hutto service for the fall. 

HVAC Contractor Austin, TX, Services Can Save You Money

You can reduce energy bills while staying comfortable with a properly working HVAC system. When you take the help of ac repair Hutto, TX services, you won’t have to worry about costly repairs. 

If your filters need to be replaced or your coils need to be cleaned, fall is a great time to do it. That will increase efficiency and make your home more comfortable during the colder months. Putting off maintenance and repairs until winter will cost you more. So by scheduling routine maintenance with certified professionals of Grande Air Solutions, you’ll avoid costly repairs that regular tune-ups could have prevented.

Grande Air Solutions is Your Go-to Call for Fall HVAC Maintenance in Hutto 

Fall is all about enjoying the beautiful foliage, the coziness, and the fun of the season. And at Grande Air Solutions, we want to ensure you get the most out of it by maintaining the safety and comfort of your home. 

For the best performance of your heating and cooling systems, we provide regular HVAC maintenance and service. Our team performs a full analysis of your unit. Conducts an energy audit and tests your indoor air quality and temperature control systems. With our fall maintenance, you won’t have to worry about your HVAC units malfunctioning during the coldest months of the year. 

We are ready to prepare your home for cooler temperatures, so contact us today to schedule your HVAC maintenance. 

Nobody loves paying more than they absolutely have to for utilities. Want to know the #1 secret to saving money on your heating and cooling bills? Use less heating and cooling.

That doesn’t mean you have to be uncomfortable in your home, though! It only means you have to use your HVAC system to its maximum efficiency. And that starts with your thermostat.

Three Types of Thermostats

Thermostats come in three types: Manual, Programmable, and Smart.

Manual thermostats are the old-school type you run across in older hotels (or maybe your grandparents’ house.) They’re inexpensive, but they aren’t especially precise or energy efficient. To ensure the maximum efficiency of your HVAC unit, you have to manually adjust the settings every time you enter and leave your home.

Nowadays, most people have a programmable thermostat. You program the thermostat to output various temperatures throughout the day to maximize your savings and comfort. For example, when it’s warm outside, you can set your thermostat higher when you’re not home and lower in the evening. These electronic thermostats allow for customization, adaptation, convenience, and energy savings. They may cost more than their manual predecessors, but the savings are absolutely worth it!

Now here’s the really cool option. Smart thermostats are essentially programmable thermostats on steroids. If you’re looking for all the best features and then some—we’re talking self-learning and energy-use data galore—a smart thermostat is a way to go. You’re definitely going to pay for the extras, though; even the most basic models run about $250.

We’re going to guess (and strongly recommend) you don’t go for the manual thermostat. So how do you decide between the programmable and smart options? Keep reading.

Three Differences Between Programmable Thermostats and Smart Thermostats

1. Customization

Programmable thermostats allow for varying degrees of customization, depending on the model you choose:

  • 7-day models allow you to have a different schedule every day of the week.
  • 5+2 models have the same schedule for the 5-day work week and a different schedule for weekends.
  • 5+1+1 models provide the same schedule for the 5-day work week then different schedules for each weekend day.

Smart thermostats offer these same settings plus the ability to make adjustments on-the-go using a smartphone—even when you’re not home. Let’s say soccer practice went a little shorter than usual, but your kiddo worked up a real sweat. You can adjust the thermostat on your way home to give you the perfect temperature when you return!

Some smart thermostats are also self-learning—they can track movement in your home to figure out more specific patterns and schedules, automatically adjusting themselves as needed to keep you comfortable.

2. Cost

There’s a steep price difference between smart and programmable thermostats. A smart thermostat can easily set you back $250, while programmable thermostats are more in the range of $60 to $100.

So do smart thermostats result in a significantly more efficient system? Will you make up for the initial cost over time? Probably not. You can expect to save the same amount using a programmable or smart thermostat, meaning all that extra money is going toward bells and whistles, not energy efficiency.

3. Bells and Whistles

For some people, smart thermostats cross the thin line between futuristic and just downright creepy. If you’re uncomfortable with smart tech in your home, a programmable thermostat will serve you better!

Here’s another consideration: To get the full use of a smart thermostat, you’ll want to take advantage of features like energy reports and monitoring. If that’s not you, a smart thermostat probably isn’t the best choice.

Similarities Between Smart and Programmable Thermostats

Ultimately, depending on your budget and preferences, either thermostat will be a great upgrade to your home! Given their key similarities, it’s pretty hard to make the wrong decision.

You’ll experience nearly the same cost savings. If you use your thermostat to its full potential, you can expect to save 15 to 30% on your energy bills. ENERGY STAR gives a pretty thorough list of things to keep in mind to get the most from your thermostat.

The thermostat needs to be compatible with your home. Depending on the age of your home and the existing HVAC system, you might be limited in your options. Both programmable and smart thermostats need to be compatible with your HVAC system. Each thermostat should be professionally installed. Both smart and programmable thermostats should be installed by your Austin HVAC technician. Give us a call today!