Will a Smart Thermostat Save Me Money on Energy Expenses?

December 07, 2020

Keeping your Pella house comfortable can consume a lot of money. The average homeowner spends about $172 on monthly heating and cooling bills, according to ENERGY STAR®, or around $2,060 annually. At least half of that goes to heating and cooling.

Most houses have programmable thermostats, but the majority of people don’t take the time to program them. The process is annoying, complicated and only gives you limited options for temperature settings. When your house is kept at the same setting throughout the day, it wastes utilities and badly impacts your monthly bill.

Smart thermostats pick up on your routine and adapt the settings to accompany it. But can having one really help you spend less money on heating and cooling? Yes, and here’s why.

Studies Show Smart Thermostats Reduce on Heating and Cooling Costs

Independent studies have determined these devices can produce major savings.

These studies included home heating and cooling expenses in 41 states before and after putting in a Nest smart thermostat. Nest said the study found its thermostats can save up to 12% on heating and 15% on cooling, resulting in an approximated savings of $131 to $145 annually.

With the average smart thermostat costing between $100–$250, those savings can help it pay for itself. And the majority of local energy companies offer rebates for smart thermostats since they’re ENERGY STAR® certified.

How Does a Smart Thermostat Work?

After your smart thermostat is installed, you’ll first program it just like your old thermostat. You’ll set it up and down, so the thermostat can determine your desired settings. Then, it will start developing a program that helps you spend less money, whether you’re at your house or out and about. As it geofences with your smartphone, you won’t have to think about adjusting it when you exit or come back.

Pros and Cons of Installing a Smart Thermostat


As we talked about previously, smart thermostats provide many pluses to your residence and utility bill, such as:

  • No need to adjust—Your smart thermostat will pick up on your routine, so you won’t be required to use up time setting programs or remember to change.
  • Knows when you get home and leave—Since many smart thermostats geofence with your phone, your house will be put into an energy-efficient setting when you go and be comfortable when you arrive.
  • Remote temperature supervision—You’ll be able to watch your residence’s temp from virtually anyplace, due to an app on your phone.
  • Monitor heating and cooling use—Most smart thermostats offer great data through their app, like how long you needed heating and cooling on a particular day.
  • Reminders—Select smart thermostats will remind you of critical maintenance tasks, such as when it’s time to replace your air filter.
  • Additional savings—Most local energy companies provide rebates for smart thermostats, so check with yours for more information.


Having said that, there’s several areas you should consider when thinking about adding a smart thermostat in your house:

  • Compatibility—Subject to the type and age of your heating and cooling system, a smart thermostat might not function with it. If you don’t know, it’s best to ask an HVAC pro like Van Haaften Plumbing & Heating. We also advise having it professionally installed. This guarantees that you have the correct number of wires and that it’s linked right. Some systems don’t have a common wire, which results in compatibility troubles with a smart thermostat. This wire energizes your thermostat, so if your home doesn’t have a C-wire, we can add one.
  • Housing situation—If you own your home and are planning to reside there for years, it’s a smart investment to install a smart thermostat. If you plan to move shortly or rent, we suggest waiting unless you want to take the thermostat with you. If you rent, you’ll often need to have your landlord’s permission first ahead of installing a new thermostat.
  • Cost—Smart thermostats are pricier than programmable thermostats, and we recommend having yours professionally installed. However, the energy savings over time can help pay for itself.
  • Lifestyle—Does a family member work from home, or is someone frequently at the house? If that’s your situation, you might not see as big of savings, but you’ll have the benefits of not needing to program or adjust a thermostat.

Depend on Van Haaften Plumbing & Heating for Your Smart Thermostat Needs

At Van Haaften Plumbing & Heating, our top priority is to keep your home cozy while helping you save on energy bills. If you’re wanting to install a smart thermostat, our specialists can help, from picking the right model to expert installation. Give us a call at 641-628-3621 today to learn more.