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AT HOME: Programmable thermostat can save you big bucks

Green Shoot Media Published: October 13, 2016 4:00 AM
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If your home is equipped with an old-fashioned mechanical thermostat, it may be time to jump to the electronic, programmable style.

A programmable thermostat allows you to program different temperatures at different times of the day. By allowing your furnace to work less for a portion of the day, you will save a good deal on your electricity or gas bill.

Why Upgrade?

The most obvious difference between an electronic and a mechanical thermostat is its interface. An electronic thermostat will feature buttons to change the temperature or set different timers. On the other hand, a mechanical thermostat will most likely only display a dial. An electronic thermostat can be an inexpensive upgrade to make your home feel more modern.

The insides of the different thermostats are what really matters. A mechanical thermostat uses two pieces of metal that are joined together. Temperature is measured by these two pieces expanding and contracting. They are usually accurate within five degrees.

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An electronic thermostat relies on digital sensors to measure temperature and alert your furnace when the temperature needs to increase or decrease. These sensors are usually accurate within one degree.

Energy Star Tips

Follow your device's "savings set-points" for at least 8 hours a day. A good time for this is while you are at work or sleeping.

Find your home's comfort spot and avoid overriding the programmed settings.

Keep an eye on your batteries. Change the batteries each year for peace of mind.

While you're Away

It may come as no surprise that you can control certain thermostats from a smartphone. This will allow you to control the temperature from anywhere. You only need to download an app and be sure that your thermostat is connected to a Wi-Fi network.


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