Due to technological advances, the use of smart thermostats has become increasingly popular. However, many people will wonder how does a smart thermostat work before making the sizable investment.
We installed the Hive Active Heating system in this tutorial, which we rated as one of the best smart thermostats available. It ticks all the boxes in terms of the stylish design and usability when using the smartphone application.
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How Does It Work?
Understanding the exact process of a smart thermometer will better help you make the correct buying decision. Below is a simplified diagram of the connections involved with installing the device to your boiler.
In order to form the remote connection, the thermostat needs to be connected to the internet. This is achieved via the hub, which connects to the router via an Ethernet cable.
If you already use an existing hub for other devices such as a smart plug, you will not need to purchase another one. Most hub can handle multiple devices all at once.
Receiver To Boiler Connection
After setting up the internet connection, the next step is to connect the receiver which communicates between the remote connection and the boiler. Depending upon your existing setup will determine the difficulty of the installation.
If you have previously had programmable thermostats, you may not need to setup the external connections again (labelled in red below). They are the only part of the installation that may require a professional to install.
If they are already installed, you can simply plug the receiver into the socket (labelled in blue above). Within this installation, there were two receivers where one controlled the radiators and the other was used for underfloor heating.
Receiver To Thermostat
The receivers are normally the most time consuming part of installing a smart thermostat. Once setup, you can then begin to connect the thermostat to the receiver, which can be achieved using the application or manually.
It’s important to note that some receivers may perform firmware updates and will refuse to connect until its complete. To confirm this, check to see whether the receiver is flashing or outputting a light as this can be used for diagnostics.
After the connection is successful, you will want to test that your actions are carried out by the boiler. We advise that you perform basic functions such as manual overrides and scheduling the boiler to turn on at certain times of the day.
Other Smart Devices
The majority of thermostats will also connect with multiple smart devices to further enhance its functionality. These devices include the Amazon Alexa, Google Home Assistant, Apple HomeKit, IFTT and many more.
Are They Worth It?
There is no denying the fact that a smart thermometer does come with a premium price tag. However, they provide extra convenience and in the long run, they will help you become more energy efficient and save you money.
We highly advise that you buy from a reputable brand in the UK and if possible, think long term. For example, if you plan to add other Hive smart devices in your home, choosing the Hive kit would be the best option.