Automatic setup based on your usage. App control and voice control. Vibrant high-definition display. Save 10-15% on energy bills. Available in many trim colors. Compatible with 95% of AC systems.
Initial wiring can be tricky.
Turns itself off when you leave to conserve energy. Low-profile design blends in well with rooms. Easy to program Quick Schedule in the Nest app for simple adjustments. Considered user-friendly.
A few device quirks during setup and some users feel the app could be more intuitive.
Backlit design with oversized display is easy to read. Integrates with Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, and Samsung SmartThings. Offers flexible scheduling and optimizes energy based on trends.
Must download the app for control or otherwise adjustments on the device are somewhat limited.
Wide color display. Delivers maintenance alerts. Easy to program with 7-day schedules. Displays weather forecast. Compatible with many smart home systems. Touch screen is responsive and quick. Simple installation.
Lacks money-saving geofence technology.
Excellent app integration allows you to control the temperature straight from your phone. Interface is easy to see and use. Adds an accent of flair in the room while remaining functional.
Reliability is questionable in the event of a power failure.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
Sometimes it can seem like manufacturers are willing to add WiFi to just about anything, from your front door to your refrigerator. The “smart home” revolution brought a wave of WiFi-enabled products – often referred to as the “internet of things,” or IoT gadgets – but one stands out above all the rest: WiFi thermostats.
WiFi thermostats can dynamically monitor your home’s temperature and make changes based on conditions. For example, if your WiFi thermostat notices you’re not home during the day, it will then use less of your heat or air conditioning unit while you’re gone. What’s more, most WiFi thermostats come with a companion smartphone app, so you can create schedules, monitor your home’s temperature remotely, or just change the temperature, all from the comfort of your phone. Most WiFi thermostat owners like the cost savings they enjoy – and they absolutely love the convenience a WiFi thermostat offers.
Every WiFi thermostat comes with the same basic functionality – it can change the temperature and make adjustments to consume fewer resources and save you money. But the real fun of a WiFi thermostat is in the bonus features, the innovations that turn these devices from a “nice to have” to a “must have.” Here are the features we like the best.
While it may seem rather basic, some WiFi thermostats don’t have an app for your smartphone, so any interaction has to be done manually. Buy a WiFi thermostat that has an app, and make sure to get one that allows you to use that app to adjust the temperature even when you’re not in the house.
Programming thermostat schedules isn’t anything new, but it’s a pain on traditional thermostats. Most WiFi thermostats have a clear, easy-to-use interface that allows you to set your perfect temperature schedule. Some will even send notifications to your phone when a change is being made or when there’s a problem.
It’s nice to be able to control a WiFi thermostat with your smartphone, but it feels downright futuristic to change the temperature with a voice command. Most WiFi thermostats support Amazon’s Echo service and Google Home, so if you already use your digital assistant to control other smart devices, you’ll love it even more when it can maintain a perfect temperature.
For years, thermostats were only available in two colors: white and off white. Most WiFi thermostats feature beautiful, full-color LCD displays, so it’s easy to read menus, see icons – or just read the temperature – from across the room.
Not all homes are good at maintaining a single, consistent temperature. In fact, some homes have one or two rooms that run a little cooler or hotter than the rest, which can present a challenge for thermostats because most only have only one temperature sensor located directly on the unit itself.
Enter the WiFi thermostat room sensors. These handy “satellites” for a WiFi thermostat tell it how cold or warm it is in a different room in the house. WiFi thermostat room sensors are perfect for anyone with a problem area or a thermostat located in an area that’s warmer or colder than the rest of the house.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that WiFi thermostat room sensors aren’t a cure-all: these devices will help the thermostat know what the temperature is like elsewhere, but a single-zone heating, venting, and air conditioning (HVAC) unit will still only be able to make the house one temperature. If you need to keep different areas of your home two separate temperatures, you’ll need a multi-zone HVAC system. Multi-zone systems are most commonly found in large houses, mansions, and commercial buildings.
You don’t have to spend a lot to get a good WiFi thermostat, but there are definitely some worthy perks to spending more. Keep these price ranges in mind when shopping for a WiFi thermostat.
At this price, you’re likely to see WiFi thermostats that have the right core features but are missing some of the polish of more expensive models. If you need a WiFi thermostat but don’t care how it looks or what the smartphone app is like, you can pick up a solid model for a modest price.
WiFi thermostats in this price range blend amenities like colour screens and intuitive menus with smart technologies that adapt to your daily habits. These thermostats are an outstanding value, and some even include additional room sensors.
In this price range, you’ll find WiFi thermostats that are part smart-home appliances, part conversation pieces. Eye-popping designs also come with luxuries like automatic usage reports and proactive notifications if there’s ever a problem.
If you use a digital assistant with your WiFi thermostat, enable parental controls. Being able to change the temperature with a single voice command is pretty cool, but you should take steps to prevent any mischief or accidents and enable parental controls. With parental controls in place, only the adults you specify can interact with your WiFi thermostat.
If you own other smart home products (such as Nest), consider the additional value in buying a compatible WiFi thermostat of the same make. Brands like Nest often have an entire family of smart home products, and not surprisingly, they all work especially well with one another. For example, with a security camera and thermostat, you can create a rule to turn down the thermostat and turn on the cameras when you leave the house. While it’s possible to integrate devices from different manufacturers, it’s never nearly as convenient.
A. How much your heating and cooling bills are affected by a WiFi thermostat will depend on the amount of space you have and the age of your existing HVAC unit, as well as your local climate. However, in most cases, homeowners report their heating and cooling bills can go down as much as 20% when using a WiFi thermostat.
A. Some homes have multiple HVAC “zones,” or areas that can maintain separate, unique temperatures. For example, an especially large house might have a temperature zone for each floor. The majority of homes are single zone, meaning the HVAC system heats or cools the entire dwelling to a single temperature. If you’re not sure how many zones your home has, count the thermostats. The number of thermostats in your home will typically equal the number of zones your HVAC unit supports.
A. Most WiFi thermostats are designed to be relatively easy to install by just about anyone, but unless you have experience with thermostat installation, we recommend hiring a licensed professional. Not every home is the same, so depending on the age of your house, you could find yourself in a situation not covered by the manual. Go the safer route and contact a local HVAC contractor, and don’t risk the health of your home’s heating and cooling system.
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