Smart technology for your Heating
13 of March 2019 Introduction
Ok, so most of us have heard about “smart technology” or “smart thermostats” right? Or so we should have... but what is it, and how can it help us?
In short, it makes our heating smarter, more efficient and saves us money and helps the environment ultimately. I guess another reason to call it smart is because it connects to our smartphones in most cases, allowing us to control our heating from the other side of the planet.
This might sound a bit gimmicky to most people, but hear us out, its actually really making a difference to how people use their central heating and hot water in the UK and can save you more than you might think.
Your thermostat controls 60% of your energy bill, and UK customers saved 8.4% to 16.5% just by installing a “smart thermostat”
Whats out there?
As far as central heating is concerned, theres only a hand-full of smart technologies available, but a few brands seem to stand out..
The big one is “nest”, who were one of the first to really make noise in this sector (shown in the far left photo above). It has a motion sensor built in to the thermostat and can learn the pattern of when people wake up and go to bed, and can fully tailor your central heating program based on a 7 day week. It also comes with an app, that will link to local weather stations and will anticipate how long its going to take to heat your house based on local temperatures and from the knowledge of how long it takes to heat your home which it learned along the way, giving you a cosy home every time.
“Tado” is another one of the big players (pictured far right above), this also has an app which allows the user to remotely switch on/off the central heating, monitor past use and so on.. but it uses something called “geofencing”, and anticipates the homeowner’s return, and makes sure the house is nice and toasty, but also makes sure the heating switches off as soon as everyone has left the house, claiming to “reduce your heating bill by up to 31%”.
As well as the wall mounted thermostats, there are radiator thermostats that can replace your existing “TRV’s”, and link up with your smart thermostat to make the system even more efficient again! (Shown in the middle photo above)
These work by giving the user full control over every room the radiator thermostats are fitted in, allowing an individual heating program for every room, so for example, if in the summer you only wanted your bathroom radiator to come on to dry towels, you could do this quite easily. Or say you only wanted the downstairs radiators on in the day, but all radiators on in the evening, that would also be possible..
Ultimately the more control we have over our heating and hot water, the more money we save, and with the constant rise in gas prices, that cant be a bad thing..
How much can i really save?
How much people can save varies depending on the current system controls they have, and how they use them.
If you’re turning your heating on and off manually at the boiler, the first thing you need to consider is fitting a timer and thermostat.
If you already have a thermostat and timer, then upgrading to a smart thermostat is going to save the average UK gas consumer £130 or £8-£17 a month, but take the image below as an example of how-much you might save just by turning your current “non-smart” thermostat down a notch or two, and imagine how much doing both could save you!