You might not think much about heating in the spring or summer but when the winter comes you’ll certainly want to stay warm. Do you only turn it on when it gets cold or do you keep it on all the time? I asked this question the other day and this article was quite informative. The best thing to do, is to make your house as energy efficient as possible so that heat doesn’t escape as soon as you’ve made it nice and warm. Then if you can regulate it at an optimum temperature then you’ll be happy.
There are so many ways out there to heat your house. We’ve been doing it since we invented fire, which is a pretty long time ago. Now we have things like combi-boilers. Mix these with the Internet, and heating can be controlled from anywhere.
Your normal standard boiler thermostat will turn the boiler on or off in your house according to the temperature, and you can set it to turn on at different times of the day. A SMART thermostat will let you control every element of your house’s heating with an app on your phone. When you use it with the internet then you can also control your house’s heating while you’re out and about. When you go away on holiday, just turn on the heating and the hot water on your journey home, so you’ll be instantly greeted by a warm and cozy house. What’s best about heating your home the smart way is that it will save you money in the long run. The sensors in your home can teach your thermostat when you’re in and when you’re out, and heat the house accordingly.
Can I install a Smart thermostat by myself?
Absolutely. It can be as simple as turning the power off first, unwiring the old thermostat and labelling the wires. Then wiring up the new one and pairing it with your WiFi and installing an app on your phone.
You can fit them yourself if you have the right type of boiler. Here are some brands: NEST learning, Hive, Honeywell, Milano Connect, Genius, Drayton, Tado. Stay away from ones that might not be compatible with your brand of boiler or your type of smart speaker. Hive, Honeywell or Nest seem to be the better ones.
Looking at one of the best sellers : Hive 2. A skilled Electrician needs to wire it up to BS7671 standards, as it’s a fully wired system. The central heating system needs to be completely isolated while working on it. The Hub needs to be wired into your broadband router with a network cable too. If you’re confident at doing this sort of thing yourself then go for it. I think I would rather look at something else if I’d not done this sort of thing before.
The Honeywell evohome system does similar things to Nest or Hive, but it also offers zonal heating. This means you can heat individual rooms to a schedule. So if you only occupy certain rooms at different times or need different rooms to be at different temperatures, then this is the perfect solution. It might be a bit more expensive and not the best looking smart thermostat about town, but in the long run it will save you money. Especially if you have a large house and not that many people living in it. It runs on an independent wireless frequency that’s separate from your household WiFi, meaning less interference. You don’t need a professional to install it, but it mighty be a bit tricky for a novice. This is because you could run the risk of damaging the components if it;s not wired up properly. A professional will be able to carry out signal strength tests too.
Honeywell Home THR99C3110 evohome Smart Wi-Fi Thermostat Kit with Wireless Boiler Control Relay Box (link) is the base unit that has the controller and the wireless boiler relay box. This is the basic setup which includes the thermostat and the relay box that talks to your boiler, so it will detect the internal temperature and turn on your heating when it gets too cold. Zones like underfloor heating can be added and controlled via a separate relay box. Your current relay could already be compatible though.
To get multi-zone heating in different rooms you’ll need the radiator kit. (Honeywell Home HR924UK evohome Wireless Radiator TRV Heads Multi-Zone Kit for UK, White (Pack of 4) – amazon link). TRV stands for Thermostatic Radiator Valve and they’re the valves that go on the end of your radiator. Usually they’re manual but in this case they have a motor that controls the valve. There’s an LED screen on each valve to tell you the zone and the temperature it’s set to. The valves are compatible with M30 x 1,5 valves (Honeywell, MNG, Heimeier, RBM, Oventrop), and there’s a Danfoss adapter included, to allow compatibility with RA/RAV/RAVL versions. To operate them remotely via your phone or Alexa, Google Home etc you’d need the Honeywell evohome controller that comes with the Thermostat kit. This ultimately connects it all to the WiFi, and gives you a central control hub.
At the end of the day, you should get what’s right for you and your house, but the Honeywell evohome looks great. You can start off with the Smart controller and thermostat and upgrade at a later date if you need to. The best thing is, unlike your double glazed windows, you can also take it with you to your next home.