Update Your Thermostat Schedule

Update Your Thermostat Schedule

Whether you run a central heating system, furnace, heat pump, or an air conditioner, you’ll need a way to adjust or create a temperature schedule that will make you comfortable. For instance, as you head towards winter, you’ll want an indoor temperature range that’s higher than your typical summer temperatures. 

Before the invention of thermostats, manipulating your temperatures was impossible. However, with a thermostat schedule, you and your family can now have the luxury and comfort of deciding your temperature ranges. 

Thermostats derive their name from two Greek words: thermos-meaning heat and statos -which means standing or status. In short, they keep the heat at the same level. Let us now look at the different types of thermostats, their capabilities, and why a thermostat schedule is important.

Types of thermostats

There are four basic types of thermostats categorized based on their mode of operation and level of automation. Here is a run-through of what they are and the features they come with.

  1. Non-Programmable Thermostat

This type of thermostat is the most basic in terms of features and the simplest to operate. It comes with manual controls to help you adjust both the temperature and fan settings to your preferred range. You cannot pre-program it.

  1. Programmable Thermostat

This is almost the exact opposite of the non-programmable thermostat. As its name suggests, it allows you to pre-program your temperature and fan settings. You can have settings for specific days or an overall setting for all days. Programmable thermostats may come with a touch screen and added functions or have buttons for manual operations.

  1. Wi-Fi Thermostat

This is still a programmable thermostat but comes with Wi-Fi connectivity. This functionality allows you to access and control the thermostat settings from your computer, tablet, or smartphone. The flexibility and remote-control capabilities are the main selling points of this device.

  1. Smart Thermostat

Still falling under the programmable category, this thermostat incorporates automation capabilities allowing it to connect with all your smart home equipment and tools. Using artificial intelligence, it learns your schedule and home habits thus enabling it to adjust the temperature, humidity, and fan settings automatically. It may also come with voice control features compatible with voice assistants such as Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.

Scheduling your thermostat

When working with programmable thermostats, you can schedule your settings to fit a certain routine. Here is an overview of standard thermostat schedule features.

Every programmable thermostat has a thermostat schedule button. When you press the button, the days of the week (Monday to Sunday) will show up on your screen. From here you can choose the days you are interested in.

Each day has four time periods that show on the screen which include:

  • Wake: This is the period when you wake up
  • Leave: This is the time you leave the house
  • Return: This is the period when you come back in the evening.
  • Sleep: This is when you retire to bed

For each of the periods above, you can pre-program your ‘heat’ and ‘cool’ settings, as well as the time applicable to each period. The thermostat will follow the set schedule until you change. You can always update the settings using the schedule button.

Overriding Your Settings

Whereas the thermostat runs based on your schedule, it also gives you a chance to override the programmed settings for a given period. For instance, when you come home and find the set temperature too low for winter, you can set a new temperature range effective until a given time when you go to sleep. Thereafter, it will return to the set schedule.

Temperature Holds

There are two main types of temperature holds: temporary hold and permanent hold. Pressing the hold button once sets your thermostat to permanent hold at the current temperature setting. Pressing the button twice gives you a chance to set a temporary hold where you input the temperature range you want for a given number of hours. You can also use the hold button to set the temperature at a given range for several days until you come back from your vacation or business trip.

Fan settings

The fan settings on your thermostat are synced to your HVAC’s system blower.  There are three main settings.

  • ON: This sets the fan to run at all times
  • AUTO: Considered the most energy-efficient setting especially during winter, AUTO means the fan runs only when the heating and cooling systems are on. 
  • CIRCULATE: This setting circulates the fan for about 30% of every hour to help balance the indoor temperature.

Benefits of a thermostat schedule 

Apart from the flexibility and convenience, there many benefits of thermostat scheduling that you will enjoy. Here are some of them.

  • Energy and money savings: When properly set, scheduling ensures energy-efficiency and can save you between 20-30% in heating and cooling costs.  This means lower utility bills and reduced expenses.
  • Consistent temperature: Instead of cranking your heating system on during winter, a thermostat schedule can help you maintain a perfect and steady, inhouse temperature that always makes you comfortable.
  • Less wear and tear of appliances: Scheduling ensures that your home is energy-efficient and the equipment runs optimally. In turn, this lowers wear and tear of your equipment and minimizes maintenance expenses.
  • Less time in adjusting: Once you set your thermostat schedule, you don’t have to always keep on adjusting your temperature, fan, and humidity settings. This saves a lot of your time.

Newer models of programmable thermostats come with plenty of settings and troubleshooting capabilities that some homeowners struggle to keep abreast of. You don’t have to go through all that. Our heating and cooling technicians at Vacu-Man can help you program your thermostat based on your needs and if need be train you on scheduling and basic troubleshooting. Visit our site or call us today to get a free estimate.