will programmable t-stat save money?


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Old 08-06-13, 07:22 PM
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will programmable t-stat save money?

I have an oil furnace with a basic digital thermostat that is non-programmable. I spend a good deal of time not home for typical reasons. I was thinking of getting a programmable thermostat so I can have the furnace auto turn down during the night and when I am not home. However, will this really save money and if I typically have it at 74, what should it drop to when turned down? My thinking is, if you keep it at 74 degrees, it will maintain that temp with shorter run times. If set to turn down then back up, it will still run short times when the lower temp but run a log time to get back up to normal temp. Any first hand experience with this?

In addition, is there a way to control this via a smart phone or internect conection? I have a cable modem for my network.
 
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Old 08-06-13, 07:31 PM
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"will this really save money?" Yes, it can especially with your type of heating system. Yes, there are internet capable thermostats. Do you have a wireless router?
 
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Old 08-06-13, 07:39 PM
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Yes, I installed a separate cable modem and router which is wireless. Looking at the t-states, they seem to be a couple hundred at the local lowes / home depots. Any recommendations? My system is forced air with central are as well.
 
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Old 08-06-13, 07:45 PM
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What is the make and model of your current thermostat? Which terminals have wires attached? Do you want a touchscreen thermostat or just one that is programmable that you can access via smartphone and internet?
 
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Old 08-06-13, 07:58 PM
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My current t-stat is a robertshaw (item #9500). There are the following terminals:

RH w/ red wire
RC w/ black wire
W w/ white wire
Y w/ yellow wire
B w/ no wire
O w/ no wire
G w/green wire

As for the touch screen, it does not matter provided the functionality is there. I have read though that the better t-stat would have a separate weekend schedule from the week day schedule.
 
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Old 08-06-13, 08:16 PM
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The best type would have each day available to have it's own schedule... You have a 1 heat 1 cool system.

With all functionality that you could get from your system (pretty basic) I recommend the RTH6580WF Honeywell wifi thermostat. For wifi setup it does require that you have a wireless device (smart phone, tablet, laptop, etc....).

Most all wifi thermostats require a "C" connection which you don't have. Is there an extra wire present that is not currently connected to a terminal on your thermostat? Those wifi thermostats that do not require the "C" connection often times are riddled with power issues because they use power stealing technology that is not very good.

Helpful links:
http://wifithermostat.com/Resources/...de-English.pdf
Honeywell Wi-Fi Thermostat Installation - DIY Installation - YouTube
Honeywell Wi-Fi Thermostat Enrollment -- DIY Installation - YouTube
Honeywell Wi-Fi Thermostat Registration -- DIY Installation - YouTube
Honeywell Wi-Fi Thermostat Installation -- Substitute Extra Wire for C-Wire -- DIY Installation - YouTube
Honeywell Wi-Fi Thermostat Installation -- Substitute G-Wire for C-Wire -- DIY Installation - YouTube
 
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Old 08-07-13, 09:14 AM
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Thanks for the info. Does the wifi allow me to see the temp and adjust it when not home using my smart phone? I don't know if there is another wire, but will check. If not, I can get another wire pulled, not a problem. What is the "C" connection for and where would it get connected at the furnace?

Also, how about the Honeywell RTH8580WF model tstat. Looks like it is the same as the one recommended but has touch screen, daylight savings, and vacation mode. Looks like it is only a few $$ more.

Thanks for all the help.
 

Last edited by mustang67ford; 08-07-13 at 09:44 AM.
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Old 08-07-13, 09:51 AM
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Looking over the OP, 74 is pretty warm.
Normally 69-70 is where I set my home/awake temp.

My previous home (still working on the zoning and temp settings at this house), I would set the home/awake temp to 69. Drop to ~66 while sleeping and ~62-65 while away (work).

How regular is your schedule?
The wifi t-stats are pretty pricey. If your t-stat will end up being set and forgotten once the novelty wears off of the wifi control, it may be better to stay simple.

Edit:
A 5+2 or 7 day programmable is ideal for most and cost a lot less.
 
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Old 08-07-13, 12:23 PM
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Yes. The WiFi thermostat would allow you to change temp from your smart phone. The C connection provides a 24VAC common connection to provide full time power to the thermostat so it can stay connected to your router. Yes. The 8580 is the upgrade from the one I suggested earlier and will work with your system. The minimal amount of $ it cost to get a WiFi thermostat over a standard is worth it in my opinion.... if you were talking about $250 then that would be different for the type of system you have.
 
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Old 08-07-13, 01:51 PM
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Ok, just bought the 8580 and starting the install. Looks like I have several spare wires so the 'c' shouldn't be a problem. Where do I connect it to at the furnace?
 
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Old 08-07-13, 02:09 PM
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If your furnace has a control board then there should be a terminal labeled C. There should be 2 wires going to the outdoor unit (air conditioner).... one should be installed to the wire connected to Y at the thermostat.... the other wire should be connected to C.... you would connect your C wire for the thermostat to that wire/terminal as well.
 
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Old 08-07-13, 02:15 PM
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Thanks, you are right. Though I don't have a control board, it looks like terminals on the transformer. The C terminal does have a blue wire with the one on the Y. I'll just put the other spare blue wire I have under that terminal.
 
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Old 08-07-13, 02:29 PM
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that should work just fine...............
 
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Old 08-07-13, 03:06 PM
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ok, now a little confused. My old tstat had both an RH and an RC. The RH goes to my burner and the RC goes to the same small transformer with the red, C and G wire and is connected to the R terminal. So, does my burner wire (RH) go to the new stat (R) terminal? The, the old RC wire goes to the new RC terminal even though it is on the R terminal at the little transformer?
 
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Old 08-07-13, 03:46 PM
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It should wire pretty much the same as your old thermostat did. Remove the jumper from R to RC that came preinstalled on the new thermostat.
OLD RH = NEW R
OLD Rc = NEW Rc
 
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Old 08-07-13, 04:25 PM
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All hood up! I am also connected to my network and able to control from computer. For now, I set the cooling to permenant hold at 75 degrees with house temp of 76 degrees. The cooling kicked on and not the furnace so must have the RC and RH correct. I'll probably let it on permenant hold til I figure out how to program it.

Even though I have it set to cool, when I went to program a day, it had a temp setting for both cool and heat. If I have it set to cool and the program sees a low temp, would the heat automatically come on? I don't have the "auto" option. I want to make sure the heat won't automatically come on, regardless of the temp, unless I have it set to "heat".

Thanks again for all the help. Rather painless install.
 
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Old 08-07-13, 04:32 PM
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no, it won't automatically come on.

Programming (setting up a schedule) is much easier to do online then it is on the thermostat.
 
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Old 08-08-13, 09:22 AM
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I tried to set up a schedule online, but it wouldn't let me. Said something about online scheduling not being available til 2012?
 
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Old 08-08-13, 09:26 AM
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That is very strange. You might call Honeywell.... I don't have any problems doing that on any of the thermostats I install... mine are professional version yhermostays but they all use the same web portal.
 
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Old 08-08-13, 04:20 PM
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Called honeywell and they said it takes a day or 2 for the online features to become fully activated. They said to check again in a day. In addition, my email notifications won't work. They said this is due to the same thing; give it a day.

I am now debating on if I want to use the Smart technology feature. Any experiences with this?
 
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Old 08-08-13, 04:41 PM
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smart technology? Do you mean adaptive intelligent recovery? IF that is what you mean.... it leans how long it takes to heat or cool your home.... so you set it for 7 AM to 70F it will (after learning) automatically start cooling/heating early to meet the setpoint by 7AM. I use it.... you just set the time and the temp you want it to be instead you setting it early to reach the temp by that time.
 
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Old 08-09-13, 07:16 PM
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What you said is correct; lears to heat and cool. I'll give it a try. I was doubting honeywell tech line when they said to give it a day before I could do online scheduling, but they were correct. I can now program online. Like the system so far; thanks for the recommendation and help.
 
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Old 08-13-13, 04:36 PM
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Now have a schedule set up. I like the thermostat although I noticed the cooling kicking on and off much more. I imagine the heat will do the same. I would like to figure out how to take the tolerance out some so it does not turn the device as often. I have the cooling set to 75 and will will turn on even when the tstat says 75 and not 76. Is there a way to adjust it?
 
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Old 08-13-13, 06:05 PM
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It is made to be precise. It actually measures the temp in tenths.... but displays whole numbers.... so if it is set at 70F then it turns on at 70.5F and off at 69.5

I don't see a way to adjust the sensitivity on the your consumer version.... I know you can on the professional version.... I'll keep looking
 
 

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