March 4, 2024

If you are a homeowner in Salem, OR, you may consider upgrading to a smart thermostat. Smart thermostats are a revolutionary advancement in HVAC technology, designed to give users greater control over their home’s heating and cooling systems. Unlike standard or programmable thermostats, smart thermostats offer advanced features such as learning your preferences over time, adjusting to your schedule, and even detecting when you’re away from home to conserve energy.

However, it’s worth noting that smart thermostats can be costly, depending on the model you select. For this reason, weighing the financial benefits against the upfront costs is essential before deciding. In this article, we will explore the various benefits of smart thermostats, helping you decide whether this innovative technology is right for you.

The Cost of a Smart Thermostat

Before deciding if a smart thermostat is a good investment, you need to know how much one will cost. According to the US Department of Energy, the average smart thermostat will cost about $420. However, that doesn’t include the cost of installation.

Depending on what type of HVAC system you have, your home might require a bit of rewiring to support a smart thermostat. Unlike conventional thermostats, smart thermostats don’t run on batteries. Instead, they require a power line at their installation site. Some newer HVAC systems support powered thermostats by default. However, others don’t. So, you might need an adapter to power your new smart thermostat, which can add to its cost and the cost of its installation.

It’s also worth pointing out that there are plenty of smart thermostat models that you can buy for far less than the average price. Some basic smart thermostat models retail for as little as $50, and many options are in the $100 price range. Plus, local energy providers often offer subsidized smart thermostat deals, which can considerably lower their costs. They do this because smart thermostats conserve energy, which lessens demand on the providers themselves.

The Cost of Smart Thermostat Installation

Installation costs are something you’ll need to factor into your decision. On average, installing a smart thermostat by an HVAC technician will cost between $200 and $500. The cost depends on how many modifications the HVAC technician needs to make to your home and its HVAC system to support the smart thermostat.

Also, in almost all cases, installing a smart thermostat isn’t a DIY job, so there’s no way to eliminate the installation cost. The only reliable way to lower the installation costs associated with a smart thermostat is to have the work done when you replace your home’s HVAC system. Since installing an HVAC system calls for alterations of the wiring running between your thermostat and HVAC, you might be able to save a bit of money.

How Much Money a Smart Thermostat Can Save You

Now that you know approximately how much you’ll spend on a smart thermostat, you must examine the other side of the ledger to determine if that cost is justifiable. That’s where things get a little bit murky. Since so many variables are involved in the equation, like energy costs, your home’s insulation, your HVAC system’s efficiency, and countless other minor details, there’s no way to tell what a smart thermostat will save you until you install one. However, you can defer to some publicly available data to come up with a reasonable estimate.

According to the US Department of Energy, an ENERGYSTAR-certified smart thermostat will save you around 8% of your yearly heating and cooling energy costs. If you’re like the average homeowner here, you likely pay around $160 per month in electricity costs and around $80.53 per month for natural gas if you use it. Based on that, the average smart thermostat could save you close to $20 per month. That would give you $240 per year in savings, which is more than enough to pay for many smart thermostats, if not their installation costs.

However, it’s worth pointing out that various smart thermostat manufacturers claim that their models will save you more than the ENERGY STAR average. According to NEST, their smart thermostats save users between 10-12 percent on heating and up to 15% on cooling. Ecobee claims that its smart thermostats could save you up to 26% on your annual heating and cooling bills. If that bears out, you might recoup most of the cost of buying and installing one of their smart thermostats within a year.

Smart thermostats also save you money in other ways, too. For example, they reduce wear and tear on your HVAC system through reduced demand. It can extend the useful life of your HVAC and stave off the need for costly repairs over time. Although it’s impossible to quantify how much a smart thermostat might save you in this way, it’s certainly a significant sum over the life of your HVAC system.

Ways To Increase Your Smart Thermostat Savings

Finally, there are some things that you can do to increase the savings that a smart thermostat might generate for you. The first is to make sure you keep your HVAC well-maintained. It ensures it will run at peak efficiency, which multiplies the savings a smart thermostat could create. The next thing you can do is provide your smart thermostat gets installed in the right place. Ideally, your thermostat should be on an interior, centrally-located wall, away from heat sources, breezes, or direct sunlight. It ensures your thermostat gets the most representative temperature readings possible.

The good news is that some smart thermostats also support using one or more remote sensors. So, if your existing thermostat isn’t installed in an ideal location, you can use it to take readings in a more favorable location. Or, you could use them to further customize your comfort by prioritizing the temperature readings in different parts of your home during other times of the day. For example, you might use one sensor to prioritize conditions in your living room in the evening and another to prioritize your bedroom overnight and in the morning. In that way, your smart thermostat can further reduce your energy use without sacrificing comfort.

Your Local Smart Thermostat Experts

If you decide a smart thermostat is a wise investment for your Salem home, Woodward Heating Air Plumbing can help. We sell and install the latest smart thermostat models from industry leaders like Honeywell, IComfort, and Nest. We can help you choose the model that best suits your needs and have one of our expert HVAC technicians install it for you. We also offer complete HVAC services, including installation, repair, maintenance, gas piping, and indoor air quality services.

We’ve served homeowners in the Salem area for over 35 years, amassing an impressive reputation for affordable, quality HVAC services. We’re EPA-certified, and all of our HVAC technicians are NATE-certified, guaranteeing they have the highest level of training in the industry.

So, if you’d like a smart thermostat installed in your Salem home, call our team at Woodward Heating Air Plumbing today!

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