Smart thermostats - any recommendations?

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I’ve had mine for around 3 years now and it has never needed a Google account. In fact you don’t need a Gmail account to access any of Googles services :confused:

Nest introduced a move, from any-old-non-Gmail-email-address (which I used for the Nest and Nest app) to a Gmail address. I eventually switched, as Google Home control became very problematic. After switching to a full on Gmail address - back to caaaaaaaalm.

It wasn’t easy though, I remember going through even more :poo: than:

I migrated my account and still use a non-gmail account :confused:

I have two zone heating and therefore have two Nest thermostats. I’ve had very different experiences with them. The first, installed for maybe 7 or 8 years was excellent. As mentioned above, I set it up, used it for a day or two then found that it knew what I wanted before I did! It is attached to a traditional radiator system.

The second, installed around 3 years ago when we extended is associated with an underfloor heating system. I thought a fair amount about the complexities of using a ‘learning’ thermostat with underfloor heating, but was reassured by my experience with the first one and the fact that the instructions said the underfloor heating was fully supported.

I’ve had to turn off all the ‘smart’ features on the Nest associated with the underfloor heating - the delay between turning on the heat and the room heating up (maybe 6 hours) was too much for the Nest to get its circuits around. For various reasons the solution was to turn everything off so it is essentially just an expensive timer.

On balance, I’m glad to have the Nests, but I think I would caution someone considering it to have a think about how they hope to use it as I suspect it works well most of the time but, where it doesn’t work, it may be more hassle than it is worth…

Smart radiator valves aren’t very effective in my experience. The problem is, the thermometer is then next to the radiator, which isn’t a good place for them, for fairly obvious reasons.

If you are technical at all, I’d recommend using any zigbee valves with Home Assistant - that way you can control each room with a cheap thermometer wherever you want it and/or a Movement sensor. We have a thermometer over the bed for example which controls the bedroom radiator for example, meaning it’s the right temperature for sleeping.

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After really wanting some and exploring their uses I came to the same conclusion.

We have our Nest thermostat in our living room which is the largest room of the house. All we needed to do was tweak the setting of each TRV for the other rooms to find a right balance. So small rooms are set at #2, medium ones are set at #3 and so on.

Once done, we’ve never needed to touch them again.

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Our specific issue to solve was that our lodger likes things tropical whereas we prefer the cold! Otherwise, that sounds like it would work well.

This was the conclusion I came to when I had tado before I switched to Nest. I wrote up about it in the latest tech thread a while ago but i honestly can’t be bothered to go and find the post. I concluded that for them to be effective, each room would need one of the additional add-on room thermostats: Wireless Temperature Sensor (tado.com) as well as a couple of extra software features that aren’t available.

All in all, it gets very expensive.

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I’m serious about switching to Home Assistant though. I get zigbee thermometers off Alibaba for about £8-9. Once you aren’t locked into proprietary hubs it all gets a lot more affordable, and you can mix and match the different systems.

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I’ve been through the DIY smart-home worm-hole and decided that the trade off of cost versus a system that just works without having to spend hours self-maintaining is worth the price. HA is very good software /service, as is Node-Red, but you need a lot of time to set-up something that is achievable quicker and is more reliable using out-of-the-box products that can talk to a hub of some sort (Google Home, as an example)

At its peak, even I was struggling to keep it running and I built it (based on several RPi’s), so you can imagine just how annoyed MrsW & Kidz got when something didn’t work as expected. And it happened a lot.

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Yes this is true. It’s not consumer friendly and you need patience.

Mine does work consistently and well, but it took a lot of time to set up. I started on a few devices only I use, made it work and then scaled up room by room.

I love the end result - it’s the only thing that feels like a real ‘smart’ home to me. And it is far more affordable. But at the cost of much, much time.

I’m increasingly going off the idea of Tado when we have a bigger house. It’s fine at the moment because it’s a 1 bed flat, so I want the whole place warm and that’s fine.

But I don’t want to be heating spare bedrooms because I haven’t spent hundreds on extras.

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I think that’s the problem with any and all of the smart systems though right?

From what I understand even Nest provides challenges with a true multi-room layout. If I recall you need to have a truly “zoned” heating installation for that.

For now I’ve settled on the same thing as @Ordog with adjusting each radiator to an appropriate level. I may have to adjust seasonally, but I think that’s fine.

Any and all of them will require a decent outlay to get truly independent / a no intervention smart system - and at which point it feels like you’re talking 5+ years to actually payback the initial investment.

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We have spare rooms and I think it is important that they’re heated. Perhaps not to the comfort level of the other rooms but certainly on a low setting to avoid getting damp and mould etc.

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One thing I will say about the Tado system which I didn’t appreciate before I go it… Is the Data!

I’ve not found a way to export it yet, but you can view historic heating temperatures and conditions etc, so you can see a bit more of what your system is up to. (And you can link it to IFTTT and you know how much I love that).

Having that has been useful to see what the sort of baseline temperatures my flat gets, and how long it takes a temperature change to kick in etc.

I’m sure Nest and Hive are similar, and possibly more data available, but I would say so far the Tado system pairs well with the way I want to think about “the system” as whole.

I agree, I find all the info/data fascinating. Never completely sure what to do with it all, but anyway it’s interesting.

The hallway was walked through 57 times yesterday, apparently…

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Intrigued by this I just had a quick Google and someone has written a small script that pings the Nest thermostat and logs all sorts of stuff in Google Sheets.

Looks like one of my evenings is going to be used to get all this presented nicely and then start actioning things based on the results :sunglasses:

Brilliant :rofl: I want this now too!

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Maybe I could make a celebratory light flash when you pass the hallway for a hundredth time in a day? :thinking:

No. No I’ll get in trouble again.

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Quick, lets merge the smart lightbulb and smart thermostat thread!

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You’ll need home assistant if you want them all in one system :smirk:

Okay I’ll stop