Sales of smart thermostats are growing, but many homeowners who are not that familiar with the idea of using a smart phone to control their HVAC system are resisting. They still prefer a device on the wall.
Experts say this is an example of “early adapter market,” and that as consumers become more familiar with the technology, use will grow.
That’s just one area of concern about this technology. Here are some operational smart thermostat issues to think about. Keep in mind that not all smart thermostats have the same issues so you will want to do careful research and discuss your installation with an HVAC professional.
1. Smart phones are frequently upgraded. This can cause connectivity problems with the HVAC system.
2. Interfaces of some smart monitors display the target temperature only, rather than the room temperature. Users say they know the target temperature; they want to know what the actual room temperature is.
3. Some models do not notify the user when there is an interruption in connectivity. If you were away from home in the winter, and your home had a loss of power, you wouldn’t know about it.
4. Some “learning” models use flawed predictive data and analytics. For instance, if the thermostat programs heating and cooling based on readings from a sensor that tells how many times people pass by or what time of the day they pass by the sensor, the data can be flawed if the sensor is located in a part of the home where there is little traffic.
5. Some models need manual maintenance when they go offline, whether from a failed update, loss of power or some other reason. This can be a problem if the homeowner is away and doesn’t notice the device needs resetting.
6. Not having a “C” wire (many older systems do not have this) to hook up the smart thermostat can cause problems. There are ways to work around this issue, but you may need professional advice.
For more on smart thermostat issues, contact Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing of Indianapolis.