A smart thermostat lets you automate your heat and air conditioning based on the weather, your daily schedule, and even your temperature preferences.
This smart home technology can help you save money and energy. But did you know there are other ways it can transform everyday life? We'll walk you through them.
At Asurion, we teach millions of people about technology—from protecting your home while you're away to turning your new house into a smart home. Here's our guide to 6 unexpected smart thermostat features.
1. A smart thermostat can sense whether you're home
A traditional thermostat doesn't know when you're home—you have to adjust it manually. Smart thermostats do this work for you, using motion sensors and the location of your phone to figure out when you're out of the house. That way, it knows when to turn on energy-saving mode, turning the temperature down in the winter and up in the summer.
2. A smart thermostat can adjust for direct sunlight
If your smart thermostat is exposed to direct sunlight, the sensors can heat up. This can trick the device into thinking the room is a few degrees warmer than it is—and skew its ability to accurately heat or cool your home. But the Google Nest Learning Thermostat® has a built-in feature, called Sunblock, that senses direct sunlight and automatically adjusts for those extra few degrees. Cool, right?
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3. A smart thermostat can talk to your virtual assistant
Most smart thermostats can connect to Siri®, Alexa™, and Google Assistant™, so whichever virtual assistant you have, you can use it to control your device. This comes in handy when you're homesick and want to turn up the heat without getting out of bed. A simple voice command—“Hey Alexa, turn up the heat in the bedroom"—will take care of that for you.
4. A smart thermostat can play music
Thanks to its connection to your home's Wi-Fi network, your smart thermostat can blast Taylor Swift's latest album from Spotify® or play music from other services. If you're looking for A+ surround sound, this may not be for you, but if your smart speaker isn't working or you're trying to avoid buying a separate smart speaker, give it a try.
5. A smart thermostat can use a smart camera as a remote sensor
If you're looking to extend the reach of your smart thermostat, sync it up to a smart sensor. Certain Ecobee® smart thermostats, for instance, come with an extra sensor, or you can buy another one to expand the overall reach. Meanwhile, the Nest smoke detector comes with an occupancy sensor that can help your thermostat keep tabs on rooms that get less foot traffic.
6. A smart thermostat can analyze your energy usage
Wondering how much money you're saving with your smart thermostat? Some units generate detailed reports that track your weekly and monthly energy usage and let you follow trends over time.
Let's say you recently installed new windows. You can use one of these reports to compare energy usage for the current season and the same time period last year. Poke around your device's app settings or go to the manufacturer's website to learn more.
Still unsure whether a smart thermostat is right for you? Check out our guide to everything you need to know before switching to one.
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