HVAC systems are essential in keeping your family always at a comfortable temperature. To keep operating costs down, all of your HVAC components need to be running efficiently and this includes your home thermostat.
Homeowners often neglect their thermostats because they don’t realize how an old thermostat can affect energy bills. This guide will break down what a thermostat does and how a new thermostat can save you money.
How Older Thermostats Works
Many homes have either an analog/manual or a programmable thermostat. Thermostats were a huge step forward for homeowners looking to lower their energy bills and regulate their home comfort levels.
The first analog thermostats were born from a problem of how to regulate indoor temperatures without running the basement furnace all the time. Great minds put themselves to the task and by the 1950s the popularity of wall-mounted thermostats was on a significant rise.
Unlike thermometers, which just measure the temperature, analog thermostats use thermal expansion to regulate indoor temperature. Thermal expansion is the idea that most things get bigger when they heat up and smaller when they cool down.
Older thermostats use gas or pieces of bonded temperature-sensitive metal that expand and contract at different temperatures to create an electrical circuit that turns the HVAC system on or off.
When the room gets cool, the gas or metal contracts, creating a circuit that turns on the heat. As the room heats up the gas or metal expands eventually breaking the circuit and the heater switches off. How often this cycle happens depends on the temperature setting, the temperature outside, and how good your home insulation is.
A programmable thermostat works on the same basic technology as an analog but adds extra energy saver scheduling. Homeowners can program temperatures based on their schedule customizing temperatures and energy use.
A typical programmable thermostat has four settings: wake, leave, return, and sleep. Some programmable thermostats allow homeowners to tailor each day to suit their needs and schedule while others allow for weekdays and weekend settings.
Drawbacks to Older Thermostats
While the technology of standard thermostats is simple, it is also slow to respond. It can take some time for the regulator to react to changes in temperature and eventually bimetal strips can wear out and no longer be accurate.
Additionally, with a manual thermostat, if you want to save money by not heating an empty house you will need to remember to adjust the thermostat every time you leave or return. Programmable thermostats only work when homeowners program them. And if your family has an irregular schedule it can be hard to keep your home at the right comfort level for everyone and still save money.
Average Lifespan of a Thermostat
Older thermostats typically last about ten years, but they can have a much longer lifespan depending on the make and model. Because, like your HVAC system thermostats age, it is a good idea to schedule a home thermostat replacement when you upgrade your HVAC system. By replacing your thermostat with your HVAC system you can make sure that your new thermostat works with your new heating and cooling system.
Signs that You Need to Replace Your Thermostat
The thermostat’s main role is to communicate to your HVAC system telling it to increase or decrease temperatures. There are a few clear signs that it is time to replace your old thermostat:
- Your HVAC system keeps cycling on and off irregularly
- Registering wrong temperatures
- High energy bills
- Inconsistent temperatures throughout the house
- The thermostat won’t turn on or a blank screen (and it isn’t the batteries)
Heating and cooling our homes is a significant part of our home energy costs and one of the most significant ways you can help reduce your energy bills is with a smart thermostat.
What is a Smart Thermostat?
Home smart devices like modern thermostats offer a convenient way to control all aspects of your home’s comfort while also saving money. They do this in a variety of ways:
- predicting your schedule
- sensing when someone is home
- optimizing temperature based on local weather
A smart thermostat uses a compatible phone on your iOS device, Apple Watch, and even Alexa or Siri for voice control over home comfort settings. This means that you can regulate your heating and cooling both at home and away.
Green Apple Mechanical NJ are the experts you can trust. We have been serving the New Jersey area for years with professionalism and expertise. Customer service and care are always our number one priorities. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any of your HVAC needs contact us today toll-free at 888-611-7191.