When first released, the Nest Learning Thermostat was a revolutionary new way to regulate home heating and cooling.
For less than $300, homeowners receive a product that tracks manual temperature adjustments to learn the user’s preferences so it can self-program after the first week. Sensors track when the home is empty and automatically lowers the temperature. The thermostat even offers tips such as recommending the ideal temperature for optimal energy savings.
But as with any new technology, once it’s been on the market for a while, competitors develop and release their own, sometimes better, version. Such is the case with the Nest. Here are three quality alternatives.
Developed by Apple, the EcoBee3 retails for $249.95, the same price as Nest’s thermostat. The Internet-connected product works via wireless sensors placed around the home that tracks the temperature and occupancy of each room.
The thermostat comes with a single sensor but more can be purchased at $79 for a pair. The system also takes into account the outside temperature when performing automatic temperature adjustments.
To maintain optimal performance, the thermostat monitors itself and sends users alerts via the companion app if something’s wrong or if the product needs servicing. Additional features include sending alerts if the temperature is too high or too low and auditing of your home’s energy usage.
On average, users of the EcoBee3 save 23 percent on heating and cooling costs annually.
This model retails for $279 and boasts an average savings of $130 per year. The biggest selling point is the geo-fencing feature, which tracks the location of residents via the companion app and sets the thermostat to the home or away setting depending on your proximity of up to 7 miles.
The thermostat also offers shortcuts that allow you to adjust the temperature based on a predetermined set of conditions such as the time of day or when someone’s home, and it tracks the humidity levels and can activate your home’s ventilation system.
Emerson Sensi Wi-Fi Thermostat
In addition to regular programmed settings, when connected to your router, this thermostat allows users to make adjustments via any Internet-connected device. The companion app provides step-by-step installation instructions and the thermostat is compatible with gas, oil and electric heating and cooling systems. The Emerson Sensi also tracks the humidity levels in your home.
When not connected to the Internet, this product works as a traditional thermostat. It retails for $139, making it ideal for consumers looking for a straightforward product with remote adjustment capabilities.
For more home automation ideas, head to Modernize.com