Your Guide to Buying a Thermostat

Choosing the correct control system is crucial in ensuring that your heating system works in the best possible way, efficiently and easily, whilst saving you money on your heating bills. Our buying guide helps you to choose the best control system based on your individual heating requirements, lifestyle and budget.

Choose a Thermostat That Works with Your House

The first thing to look at is the heat source, as not all thermostats are compatible with all heat sources. They can be suitable for underfloor heating only, central heating only, or in some cases both. So if your home is heated with central heating, then you should limit the thermostats you are looking at to the ones that can work with central heating. Similarly, if you are looking to control your underfloor heating, you should check that it is suitable for use with the system you have.

The latest addition to the Warmup thermostat range, the 4iE Smart WiFi Thermostat works with radiator-based central heating as well as both electric and water underfloor heating systems.

Types of Thermostats

Manual

These provide very basic temperature control with limited energy and money saving ability. Manual thermostats are best suited for areas where the heating requirements stay the same day in day out, e.g. when there is no seasonal changing and where heating is required every day as these work around the clock, or where the heated zone is used very infrequently or intermittently, such as a garage or garden office.

Programmable

These adjust the room temperature automatically according to the desired temperature and timings. You can program the heating to be on or off by setting up target temperatures and times – the thermostat takes care of the rest, ensuring you have got the right temperature at the right time. Features such as the Active Energy Management™ found in advanced programmable thermostats like the Warmup 3iE can save up to 10% on your heating bills by helping you choose the best temperature for your room.

Smart

Smart thermostats are internet-enabled and the most advanced type of thermostats. They offer superior energy and money saving functionality. The Warmup 4iE, for example, finds smart ways to heat your home more efficiently which could save you up to £378 on your annual energy bills. Using your energy usage data, the 4iE and MyWarmup portal work together to find you better energy tariffs from a range of energy suppliers.

The internet connection feature of Smart thermostats accompanied with the MyHeating app and location services built-in your smart phone allow the smart thermostat to control your heating automatically whilst ensuring your home will always be at the ideal temperature using as little energy as possible.

Options and Features to Suite Your Lifestyle

Choose a thermostat that allows you to adjust the heating settings to suit your lifestyle. This could be the frequency of the temperature changes (programmability) or the ability to save money by choosing a thermostat that will help to reduce heating bills (such as the 4iE).

Features to Look for in a Thermostat

There is a variety of thermostats available and the best choice for you will depend on your preference of capabilities and features. We have highlighted below a list of features to look for when choosing a thermostat.

Compatibility

This is one of the most important features, as a thermostat serves no purpose if it does not work with your heating. Always check with the manufacturer on the suitability for your heating system.

Remote Access

If you are on the move a lot and want to be able to control your heating settings from everywhere, a smart WiFi thermostat is the best choice. The 4iE comes with a MyWarmup account where you can manage and monitor your heating settings and energy usage from anywhere you have an internet connection.

Weather and Traffic Updates

If weather and traffic are important factors for you, then the 4iE is a great option. The 4iE displays weather conditions and traffic updates, so you’ll always know whether it will rain or shine and what traffic is like before you leave the house.

Programmability

If the thermostat is for a room that has varied temperature and time requirements such as a bathroom, living room or bedroom, a programmable thermostat is by far your best option as it will allow you to set different room temperature at different times. This will avoid wasting energy by heating an empty room and will give you precise control of your heating settings.

Display

Having a high definition backlit display makes it easier to use the thermostat even when it’s dark. Having a large display with a large size font should also be considered for ease of use. The resolution of the screen is important as low-resolution screens are less clear to operate and will not look as aesthetically appealing on your wall. More advanced thermostats such as the 4iE even allow you to set your own background image, giving it a personal touch.

Monitors Energy Usage

Knowing where and when you use energy gives you better control of your heating system. A thermostat that controls the heating automatically on behalf of you by learning your habits and routines, can ensure you to reach your lowest possible energy usage making simultaneously sure that you never arrive to a cold home.

Unique Capabilities

Unique capabilities such as travel updates, the ability to set your own background image and providing info on cheaper energy prices are all features that you can get with a thermostat. The need for these depends on your desired use of the thermostat. The more you are interested in saving money and if you wish to set different temperatures for different periods, the more likely you are to look at your thermostat often and these small features can make a big difference.

Buy the Right Thermostat the First Time

It is worthwhile to note that, chosen correctly, a thermostat is the type of product that can pay for itself. You do not need to buy one often so investing in an advanced and high-quality thermostat is often your top choice. When deciding which thermostat to buy, the best thing to do is to define your criteria, research the options available and decide which is right for you.

We recommend the 4iE Smart WiFi Thermostat which finds the smart ways to heat a home more efficiently, saving up to £378 on your energy bills.