Here are a few tips to make sure you’re buying the best smart thermostat for your small business, and installing it correctly.
1. Check that the smart thermostat is compatible with your HVAC and electrical systems. The Nest Learning Thermostat, ecobee4 and ecobee3 lite product pages on the Consumers Energy Small Business Marketplace all include links to installation information.
2. Most smart thermostats are designed to be easy to use, with intuitive screen designs and highly rated companion apps. If you’re having trouble choosing between the options, consider choosing one with the ENERGY STAR® mark rather than one without.
ENERGY STAR smart thermostats have had their energy savings potential independently verified based on actual field data, and have also been third-party certified to:
- measure temperature accurately
- rapidly enter low-power standby mode when inactive
- track and report heating and cooling trends efficiently
- provide tailored functionality and service for the user
All of the smart thermostats available in the Consumers Energy Small Business Marketplace are ENERGY STAR certified.
3. If your smart thermostat uses Wi-Fi, make sure you install it reasonably close to the router––or consider using a Wi-Fi range extender—so that you don’t get annoying disconnections.
You install a smart thermostat much like a regular model—except that you’ll need to know your Wi-Fi password to connect it.
(You’ll also need a smartphone, tablet or computer to get the most out of its remote monitoring and control capabilities.)
Once you’ve installed your smart thermostat, you need to adjust it manually to your comfort levels a few times a day for the first week or so—when arriving for work in the morning, leaving the office at lunch, closing up for the night, for example. The thermostat learns these preferences and automatically makes adjustments that save you money on heating and cooling—even if your schedule changes.