The Unfiltered Blog

September 25, 2015

Why should I use a programmable thermostat?

By Chuck Gassmann, CEO

Programmable thermostats allow you to pre-set the temperature setting in your home for different days and times. For example, you could program the thermostat to one temperature while you’re at work, another temperature for when you’re home and a third temperature for while you’re sleeping. If your schedule changes for a day, you can manually override the system without affecting the other settings.

Programmable thermostats have been around since the 1970s — yet only about 80 percent of homes are equipped with one. Of that, only about 20 percent of people actually program them.

So why don’t more people use them to their fullest capabilities? I think there are three reasons, which I’d like to address.

  1. They don’t realize how much money they could save.
    When used properly, a programmable thermostat can save up to 10 percent on heating/cooling costs — that’s nothing to sneeze at! For every 1 degree of setback while you’re away from home, you can save up to 1 percent on heating/cooling costs. Imagine using your programmable thermostat to set back the temperature by eight to 10 degrees while you’re at work. Voila — there’s your 10 percent savings.
  2. They don’t understand them.
    In my experience, people think programmable thermostats are much trickier to operate than they really are. Fortunately, Bell Brothers service technicians are well-trained in thermostats. Not only can they install and service the device, they can teach the homeowner how to use it, as well.
  3. They find it easier to set the desired temperature at that time.
    When you’re relaxing at your home, it’s easy to walk to the thermostat to change the temperature a degree or two. But can you recall a time you meant to set back the temperature — maybe before a weekend trip — but simply forgot? Using a programmable thermostat is convenient and removes one item from your “to-do list.”

Another great benefit is waking up or coming home to your house already at the desired temperature. For example, you can program the thermostat to be 74 degrees at 5:00 pm — just in time for your 5:15 pm arrival.

Plus, programmable thermostats are quite reliable and last for a long time. The only maintenance for some programmable thermostats is to change the batteries annually (other thermostats are hardwired). If you have an annual maintenance plan with Bell Brothers, we’ll change the batteries for you. That’s pretty simple!