Thermostats automated by smartphones
In the last few years we have seen the development of smart meters that allow homeowners to monitor their fuel usage in real time and some also allow homeowners to access their meter from a smartphone. The really advanced systems allow people to operate different parts of their home heating system from an app.
One of the most useful tools for homeowners is the new range of thermostats that can be operated by a regular smartphone. These allow homeowners to turn their heating on or off, or just adjust the temperature of the home from any location, even when away.
Having home automation controls added to your home is not a complicated process; modern technology really does make the whole process very simple to set up and manage.
The main benefit of installing home automation is to control your home’s heating system by fine-tuning it throughout the day and on different days of the week. Although traditional programmable thermostats were very useful, they do not take into account sudden changes in the weather.
For example, during early spring there may be a warm spell for a few days and you might decide to turn the heating down, or even off, when you are out. However, a sudden cold snap could strike and leave the house freezing cold. Although you could turn the heating up when you get home, it is much nicer to arrive home to warm house.
Automation is not just for when you are away though. Modern systems allow you to control the temperature of every room in the house. It is now possible to decide which rooms in the house are heated and which are left cool. Turning the heat off, or down, in the rooms that are not used daily is an excellent way to save some extra money.
Automation also allows you to change the temperature of rooms throughout the day. For example, you may want some rooms to be kept at a comfortable 64F in the morning, then lowered to 54F in the afternoon and then finally, increased in temperature to 68F in the evening.
Once the home automation system is programed it will take care of all the adjustments and you will no longer receive higher energy bills for forgetting to turn off radiators in rooms that are not being used.
Automated heating controls are ideal for families, especially when there are new arrivals. Babies like to sleep in much warmer rooms than adults, especially adults who grew up with minimal central heating in their homes. It also benefits large homes with many empty rooms because you can very simply keep spare rooms cold until they are actually required.
For those who work from home – just heating an office room during the day rather than the whole house can help save hundreds of dollars every year.
How does it work?
Good automated heating systems allow you to set up zones in your home that can be individually managed. This allows you to keep some areas warm while turning off heating to other areas; this can help save a lot of money.
Rather than with a traditional system, each room has its own thermostat and radiator valve controls. Thermostats are connected to a central controller which controls each radiator valve and this allows rooms to be individually heated. Rather than having to either have all rooms hot or all cold, each can be maintained at the perfect temperature.
There are several wireless automated thermostats on the market now and many come with smartphone apps. Products such as Z-Wave and INSTEON have smartphone apps as well as website control panels.
Z-Wave is currently the leading technology in this field and comes with advanced features that make it the most flexible solution. A large range of heating products work with Z-Wave, including thermostats, valves, timers and sensors.
INSTEON is an award winning technology that uses a unique dual-mesh network that improves system performance. It comes with dedicated remote controls for the home as well as a smartphone app. They also have a large range of heating products.
Automated thermostats are a great way to make your home more comfortable and save some money. Stop wasting energy by heating rooms that are never used – you will reduce both your carbon footprint and your fuel bills.