A thermostat is such a common item in our homes and workplaces, that many times we overlook or don’t think about its importance. To be such a small appliance, it does a very big job: regulate the comfort level of your home. When the sensors in the thermostat distinguish a change of temperature in the room, the thermostat signals the HVAC system to make a change. The unit will then react appropriately to maintain the temperature you prefer.

There are three main types of thermostat to consider when choosing a thermostat:

  • Manual
  • Programmable
  • Smart

Manual Thermostat

Manual thermostats are the most inexpensive and most basic type of thermostat.  Some are analog while others are digital. To make changes in air and temperature, the homeowner must manually do so at the physical thermostat using either dials or buttons. The advantage of a digital thermostat over an analog one is that it is quite a bit more precise. It notices smaller variations in temperature which makes it more energy efficient. Manual thermostats are also easy to understand and use.

Programmable Thermostat

The programmable thermostat is a digital thermostat that enables a homeowner to set different temperatures for different times throughout the day and/or week. For example, you may program the thermostat to maintain a different, more energy efficient temperature during the day when you are away and to return it to the temperature you prefer by the time you arrive back at home. Having this kind of control of your thermostat provides flexibility and the opportunity to save a great deal on utility bills.

Smart Thermostat

Smart thermostats are wireless and provide an even greater level of convenience to the user. Adjustments and programming don’t have to take place at the physical thermostat but can be made from another device in any location through the use of apps. Much like other programmable thermostats, the smart thermostat allows you to schedule your unit to heat or cool at varying temperatures throughout a given day or week. The smart thermostat, however, takes programming to a whole new level. It uses a learning mode combined with geofencing technology to make programming decisions for you. The learning mode allows the thermostat to follow your routine and adjust itself accordingly. Geofencing technology triggers the system based on whether or not it detects your presence within a virtual preset boundary. These features plus its ability to report and analyze energy usage allow for greater convenience and energy efficiency. The smart thermostat is the most expensive option to install but could save you a great deal on utility bills.

How They Compare

This table shows the difference in some features of manual, programmable, and smart thermostats.

Call Long Heating & Cooling

A little device like the thermostat plays a big role in maintaining the comfort level of your home. When it becomes unreliable, a lot is at stake. For thermostat troubleshooting tips, read Thermostat Troubleshooting on our blog. If these tips don’t fix the problem, the technicians at Long Heating & Cooling understand the importance of a comfortable home and will work quickly to repair or replace a malfunctioning thermostat.

For any HVAC needs in Dothan and Enterprise, AL, call 334.463.3256