A smart thermostat is the buzz these days with greater control, more convenience and more options to choose from. As a former heating and air-conditioning technician and current home inspector I believe these have there places in the homes. Do they actually do more than a regular programmable thermostat? Do you want a fancy touch screen or maybe just something that looks pretty on the wall? Regular thermostats can be manually controlled or set to activate automatically based on timers or room temperature readings. The difference with these smart thermostats are you can manage your smart thermostat from your phone, iPad or computer. It may also come with some special features that may go with your lifestyle.
One thing to remember when purchasing a smart thermostat is a common wire is generally needed for proper operation. If your installing this yourself than you may have to pull up an extra wire for proper operation. I would remove the old thermostat wire and pull up a new 5 wire.
You can’t match the convenience of checking your furnace operation when your out of state or out of the country with a regular thermostat compared to a smart thermostat. Maintenance messages are also sent out when operation is locked out. Models include : Nest, Honeywell , Ecobee, just to name a few. Prices range from $150.00 on up.
If you are one to vacation weeks or months away from home during the year than these are a great investment. If you like the latest and greatest gadgets then this is for you. Do your homework if your ready to go high tech. A good programmable thermostat will work just as well. Just set it and forget it. Some smart thermostats may qualify for incentives. Here’s a link to check if your smart stat qualifies. https://www.focusonenergy.com/residential/smart-thermostats