Do Smart Thermostats Really Save Money on Heating and Cooling?

December 07, 2020

Keeping your Sacramento house cozy can require a good amount of money. The usual homeowner spends about $172 on monthly heating and cooling expenses, according to ENERGY STAR®, or around $2,060 annually. At least half of that goes to heating and cooling.

Most residences use programmable thermostats, but many people don’t take the time to use them properly. The process is time-consuming, complicated and only provides you a couple of options for temperature changes. When your home remains at the same temp throughout the day, it requires gas and electricity and adversely affects your monthly costs.

Smart thermostats adjust to your day-to-day activities and adjust the settings to coordinate it. But can installing 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 Bills

Independent studies have determined these devices can result in big savings.

These studies involved home heating and cooling costs in 41 states before and after installing a Nest smart thermostat. Nest said the study determined its thermostats can save up to 12% on heating and 15% on cooling, producing an average savings of $131 to $145 annually.

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

How Does a Smart Thermostat Work?

After your smart thermostat is installed, you’ll at first use it just like your old thermostat. You’ll set it up and down, so the thermostat can figure out your preferences. Then, it will start developing a program that helps you save money, whether you’re at your residence or gone. As it geofences with your smartphone, you won’t have to put it on your list to adjust it when you leave or get back.

Pros and Cons of Having a Smart Thermostat


As we mentioned prior, smart thermostats provide lots of advantages to your residence and utility costs, including:

  • No need to set—Your smart thermostat will adjust to your schedule, so you won’t be required to spend time using programs or remember to adjust it.
  • Knows when you get home and go—Since a lot of smart thermostats geofence with your phone, your residence will go into an energy-efficient setting when you leave and be comfortable when you arrive.
  • Remote temperature supervision—You’ll be able to watch your residence’s temperature from virtually any location, thanks to an app on your phone.
  • Monitor heating and cooling use—Many smart thermostats offer detailed data through their app, such as how long you needed heating and cooling on a particular day.
  • Reminders—Select smart thermostats will alert you to essential maintenance tasks, including when you need to replace your air filter.
  • Added savings—The majority of local energy companies have rebates for smart thermostats, so call with yours for more information.


In spite of that, there’s a couple of points you should contemplate when considering adding a smart thermostat in your residence:

  • Compatibility—Depending on the type and age of your heating and cooling system, a smart thermostat might not be compatible. If you don’t know, it’s best to check with an HVAC specialist like American HVAC Inc. We also suggest having it professionally installed. This ensures that you have the proper number of wires and that it’s hooked up properly. Some systems don’t come with a common wire, which creates compatibility troubles with a smart thermostat. This wire runs your thermostat, so if your house doesn’t have a C-wire, we can add one.
  • Housing situation—If you own your residence and plan to be there for a long time, it’s a smart investment to have a smart thermostat. If you’re planning to move shortly or rent, we recommend delaying unless you plan to take the thermostat with you. If you rent, you’ll typically need to secure your landlord’s permission first in advance of getting a new thermostat.
  • Cost—Smart thermostats are more expensive than programmable thermostats, and we advise having yours professionally installed. However, the energy savings over the years can help pay for itself.
  • Lifestyle—Does a family member work from home, or is someone regularly at the house? If so, you might not see as many savings, but you’ll get the benefits of not having to program or adjust a thermostat.

Trust American HVAC Inc for Your Smart Thermostat Needs

At American HVAC Inc, our top priority is to keep your residence comfortable while helping you conserve more energy expenses. If you’re considering installing a smart thermostat, our pros can help, from choosing the ideal model to expert installation. Give us a call at 916-243-6714 today to learn more.