Moving towards the smart home is understandably a big change for some people. It’s always difficult to leave our traditional ways and move to bigger, more complex things. Then, to get used to turning our lighting and heating on straight from our smartphones. But could the move towards the smart home save us money in the long run? Let’s find out.
Firstly, what is smart heating?
Smart thermostats let you remotely control your home’s temperature wirelessly via your smart device; whether a tablet, smartphone or desktop. Usually more efficient than traditional thermostats, smart thermostats put you in control of your central heating. When it comes to smart heating in the smart home, brands like Honeywell, Hive, Tado and Nest are proving popular.
How does smart heating work?
Smart heating can easily be installed into your home as they’re compatible with most boilers. Generally, when you get your smart thermostat you need to plug it directly into your boiler. You’ll probably need an expert to help you with the installation process. Once the thermostat is set up, you’ll then need to connect it to your home wi-fi network. Then, once connected, download the partner app to your smartphone or tablet, so you’re ready to control your central heating systems.
Some smart thermostats learn your routine or detect when your device is in the home. Or, with Honeywell for example, geofencing allows thermostats to register when a smartphone has passed a certain location in order to turn heating on at home. i.e. When you’ve passed “Location X” which is 20 mins from home, your heating turns on and you’re greeted by a warm house 20 mins later. Sounds inviting, doesn’t it?
Is this going to save me money?
The honest answer is yes, but it depends on a few things.
The main point of smart heating is convenience and energy efficiency. You can save more energy, be ‘greener,’ and in turn can save more money the less heating you use. But that also means you need to watch what you’re doing with your smart thermostat at all times.
You need to make sure you keep on top of the app, so you’re regularly checking if your thermostat is on or off – that way you’re not spending more money without realising. Say you’re at work and you forgot to turn the heating off, the app lets you turn it off from your desk. Smart heating also lets you know how much energy you’re using with monthly reports and that way you’ll know if you need to make any changes to your monthly usage. If you use less one month than you did the month previous, you’ll be able to see the difference in cost. The size of your house and quality of your insulation could also affect how much you spend on heating.
With some thermostats, you can actually use ‘zones’ which let you choose which rooms to heat. A great way to save money and it makes perfect sense! What’s the point in heating up a room nobody’s using? Or you can add thermostats to radiators in different rooms, meaning you don’t have to have just one central heating system. There’s loads of options to heat your home!
Here’s an example of Nest’s monthly report
Let’s face some facts
When it comes to smart heating, Tado (one of the world’s biggest smart heating manufacturers) claims…
- They can cut your heating costs by up to 31%
- Heating accounts for 60% of the average household’s energy bill, which is £800 per year
- Costs mainly come down to ancient heating technology
- Their products pay for themselves within the first year
Tado’s claims are surprising. Could we really save up to 31% a year?
So, do you have the energy or not?
We can see that there’s definitely potential to save money with smart heating, and it makes sense that if you can see your monthly heating usage, then you can try and reduce it month by month if you’re unhappy with the costs. But remember – if you’re serious about smart heating, don’t forget to keep checking your devices to make sure you’re not wasting even more energy and money by leaving your smart thermostat on by accident.
If you’re interested in smart heating and think you’d like to give it a try, you can shop our smart heating brands here.