What is geofencing and how do smart thermostats use it?

Your smart thermostat can use your phone’s location to figure out if you’re home or not. What is geofencing? Imagine an invisible border surrounding your home. When you’re “inside” the border you’re considered to be “home”, so your thermostat makes things nice and comfy for you. When you’re outside that boundary, your thermostat lets the…
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Comparison: Emerson Sensi ST55 vs. Honeywell Wi-Fi 7-Day Programmable Thermostat (RTH6580WF)

In this article: we compared the Emerson Sensi ST55 to the Honeywell RTH6580WF to determine the best budget WiFi thermostat. Today we’re taking a look at two of the most popular budget-priced smart thermostats, the Emerson Sensi ST55 and the Honeywell RTH6580WF. They’re both popular they offer WiFi connectivity and a smartphone app while still being…
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No C-wire? Install a Nest thermostat at your own risk

Nest says you don’t need a C-wire – until you do. Read enough Nest reviews and you’ll eventually spot a common theme: Nests sometimes fail in systems without a C-wire. We were curious about these seemingly “random” Nest failures, so we called a few local HVAC companies and asked them for their off-the-cuff opinion on…
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Best WiFi-enabled Smart Thermostats of 2018 – Holiday Buyers Guide

We are back with a brand new edition of our annual buyer’s guide! Whether you’re giving (or hoping to get), this quick guide will help you figure out which WiFi thermostat is right for you. What’s new this year This year was light on new models, but a number of updates and new accessories hit…
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Crunching the numbers: 3rd-party projects and alternative ways to analyze your Ecobee or Nest data

Ecobee and Nest both offer emailed monthly data reports containing information such as how many minutes your system ran, whether it was heating or cooling, etc., but the reports don’t give as much nitty-gritty detail as many users would like (and you have to wait at least a month to get them). Fortunately, a few independent projects…
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7 truths about the savings claims made by smart thermostat manufacturers

How much money can you actually save with a smart thermostat? As it turns out, that’s a complicated question. The answer depends on your existing habits, preferences, the climate you live in, and more. The savings look impressive (up to 20% in some cases) and the claims sound bold (can a smart thermostat really pay…
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Review: Nest Learning Thermostat (3rd gen.) keeps pace with the competition

Our Nest Learning Themorsta (3rd gen.) rating: Nest Learning Thermostat (3rd gen.) at a Glance What it is: the award-winning, category-defining Nest Learning Thermostat hardly needs an introduction these days. Installation is designed to be simple and quick, and once set up, the Nest can (in theory) “learn” your schedule and preferences with minimal input from…
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Review: Emerson Sensi Touch Wi-Fi Thermostat (ST75) is easy to install, easy to use, and easy to like

Our Emerson Sensi Touch WiFi thermostat rating: Emerson Sensi Touch at a Glance What it is: the Emerson Sensi Touch is a smart thermostat with a touch screen, easy-to-use app, and a somewhat pared-down feature set compared to the (pricier) competition, all for a wallet-friendly price. We were super excited to get our hands on the Sensi…
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6 things you should do before you replace your current thermostat with a smart thermostat

If you’re ready to replace your old thermostat with a shiny new smart thermostat, read our 6 tips first to ensure a smooth upgrade process! We learned some of these lessons “the hard way”, and now we are sharing them here so you can learn from our mistakes! 1. Confirm your system is “low voltage”…
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Best smart thermostats of 2018 – summer shopping guide

Summer’s here! Can your thermostat keep up? If you’re still turning your AC on and off with a dial or a few buttons on a thermostat you never programmed, then you’ll love the simple, hands-off automation of a smart thermostat. If you have a 24-volt HVAC system (often called forced air or central heat/air conditioning),…
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