Everywhere you look, there are ways you can save on your electric and gas bills. Rarely is it mentioned that an improvement can be made with the use of a programmable thermostat. Heating and cooling your home accounts for on average 50% of your household bills. A newly installed programmable thermostat, with pricing anywhere between $162 and $499, can be a must have in your home.
When I first moved into my condo I used my thermostat like most people do; turn it down when I am hot, turn it up when I am cold. As a new homeowner I was blown away when I saw my first June electric bill. I came into work and inquired about programmable thermostats. I was given a very cool touchscreen thermostat. The change, of course, is not drastic and it is so hard to really compare bills considering the weather in St. Louis varies from day to day, but I did notice savings. I was excited to learn that my options were not limited to only morning and afternoon. I could schedule when I woke up, when I left for work, when I got home from work, and when I went to bed; making the transition very simple for me. In addition, I didn’t have to chastise myself every time I left the house and forgot to turn up or down the thermostat. You do not have to sacrifice indoor comfort to save either. We do not recommend varying temperatures much more than 2 to 3 degrees because this causes longer run times, making your savings shrink.
Now I have my eyes on the Nest Learning Thermostat. Instead of setting the program, the first week you adjust your temperature manually and by the 7th day the thermostat learns your schedule. You can also view and manipulate your schedule from your computer or smart phone. A new capability now is to see what days you saved energy and why, whether it was weather related or behavior settings with your thermostat.