Thermostats are devices that regulates temperature automatically and also activates a device when a certain point in the temperature is reached. Simply, it switches the heating system on and off automatically by sensing air temperature. But contrary to what many people believe, turning the thermostat in a room to a higher setting will not lead to the room heating up faster. The design of the heating system is what actually makes a room heat up quickly, not the thermostat.
Types of Thermostat
A thermostat can be replaced if it suddenly “died” on you and there are many choices available. When you’re in a dilemma on what type of thermostat to get to go with the cooling and heating setup you already have, here’s a guide to the different types of thermostat.
Non-Programmable. Despite advancement in technology, there are still non-programmable thermostats. Typically it has an LED display panel that shows the chosen temperature setting, up and down buttons to set the temperature and a switch button that toggles between off, cooling or heating. It is a fuss-free little gadget that’s easy to use and relatively cheap.
Programmable. The programmable thermostat is easier to use than the first one and has several designs. The most basic ones allow you to choose a temperature setting for the morning and one for the evening. There are other models that let you choose four different temperatures for the entire 24 hours.
Touch Screen. A touchscreen thermostat makes setting up room temperature easier. Instructions are shown on screen and programming is not messy as there are no buttons. Do check out the model that suits you best as there are touch screen models that are not practical to use by homeowners with large fingers and there are also others with complicated interfaces.
Wireless Thermostats. If you reside in a smart home, a practical but a bit pricey wireless thermostat is a good investment. You can access and control your HVAC system even if you are outside your home building. It also offers savings as you can turn off your heating/cooling system if something happens and you cannot come home or enter a warm home after getting stuck in traffic on a cold night.
Outlet Thermostats. This type of thermostat is for homes with portable cooling or heating devices like a portable air conditioner or a space heater. These are programmable as well, with models that allow you to program cooling or heating temperatures differently for weekdays and weekends.
Thermostat Practical tips
According to the Consumer Energy Center, setting your thermostat at 20°C or 68°F in winter will give 5% savings on your heating cost. Set it lower when you go to sleep or when you leave your home.
Energy.gov says that you can save as much as 10% annually on cooling and heating costs by turning your thermostat back by 7°F to 10°F from its normal setting for 8 hours each day. The savings will be higher if the home or building is located in areas with milder climate.
Set your central air conditioning to a warmer setting when you are not at home and set it to 26°C or 78°F only when you are at home in the summer. If the difference between the outdoor and indoor temperatures is smaller, your overall cooling bill will be lower.
Consider the normal time you wake up and go to sleep when programming your thermostat. Consider the schedules of every family member as well so you can adjust the temperature when the house is empty. Moreover, thermostats should be installed on an interior wall away from windows, skylight, doorways, drafts and direct sunlight to prevent “ghost readings.”
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