When you’re looking for ways to lower utility bills, installing a smart thermostat is an intelligent idea. These devices pick up on your temperature preferences and routine and then make an energy-efficient schedule that fits. What’s even better is that you can adjust and keep an eye on your settings from almost anywhere with your phone, whether you’re lying in bed or away from home. (You might even be eligible for a free smart thermostat depending on rebate programs from your utility supplier in Pella.)
Most of the time, hooking up a smart home thermostat with the help of Van Haaften Plumbing & Heating is a simple task if you have a newer home. But what if your home is older or doesn’t have the right wiring? Can you still install a smart thermostat without C wire? We’ll help you figure out the process so you can select the recommended thermostat and enjoy energy savings for a long time.
What Is a C Wire and What Does It Do on a Thermostat?
Most programmable thermostats need batteries. When you’re upgrading to a smart thermostat, you’ll find that many need a C wire, or common wire, for power. If you don’t use this wire, your new thermostat may cause your heating and cooling system to have glitches.
You can ascertain if you have a C wire by doing the following:
- Switch off power to the thermostat at the breaker.
- Take off the thermostat and check the wiring.
- If there are five or six multicolored wires, you have what’s required for a smart thermostat. You might be wondering what color is the C wire on a thermostat—and the answer to that is usually blue.
- If there are three or four thin multicolored wires, you’re nearly there. Make sure the C wire isn’t tucked within the wall. If you can’t find one, we may be able to put in one for you or you may be able to operate your new thermostat without one.
- If you have two thick wires, you may be able to install a smart thermostat with an adaptor just for high-voltage systems. Or you may be able to use a battery-powered smart thermostat, like the Lux Geo Wi-Fi Thermostat, if your wiring isn’t right and you don’t want to install new wiring.
Do Nest or ecobee Need a C Wire?
Two of the most popular brands are the Nest smart thermostat and ecobee smart thermostat. If you have two to four wires, these thermostats may be a fit for you.
Nest says its thermostats are designed to need not a lot of power and can frequently share it with your HVAC system. However, you may need to have a specialist like Van Haaften Plumbing & Heating add a C wire with the Nest Thermostat E or Nest Learning Thermostat if you’re having power problems or a battery that’s always drained.
ecobee is compatible with 24-volt systems (ones with three to six thermostat wires) and comes with a C wire adaptor. So, you’re taken care of if you don’t have a thermostat C wire.
Rely on Van Haaften Plumbing & Heating for Your Smart Thermostat Installation Needs
At Van Haaften Plumbing & Heating, we’re always on the lookout for ways to keep you cozier while keeping heating and cooling costs reasonable. If you want to know more about switching to a smart thermostat without a C wire, give us a call at 641-628-3621. We can help you choose the right model for your residence and even put in new wiring if needed.