A thermostat regulates the temperature in your home by communicating with the HVAC system – if your home is too cool then the heat will come on, and if it is too hot then the air conditioner will come on.
There are a couple of different kinds of thermostats out there and before I explain how they work, we need to take a look at the key differences of each kind.
Types of Thermostats
1. Electric Thermostat
This is the most common type of thermostat and the one that is most likely in your home. Electric thermostats use a series of sensors to detect the room temperature and adjust the temperature accordingly to achieve the target temp set on your thermostat.
2. Smart Thermostats
Smart thermostats are growing in popularity, and while they function much like an electric thermostat, they have wi-fi capability for optimal customization of your home’s temperature. They also offer the ability to remotely control your thermostat from your mobile smart device.
3. Electro-mechanical Thermostats
This is the oldest type of thermostat out there, but they are still commonly found in residential and commercial spaces. These thermostats utilize metallic strips and mercury to communicate when your furnace should turn on or off.
Regardless of the type of thermostat you have they all have the same basic function and operate in much the same way.
How Thermostats Work
No matter what kind of thermostat you have it is going to be wired into your furnace and air handler. This allows your thermostat to tell either your furnace or air conditioning unit to kick on or off to reach the desired temperature, which will be displayed on the thermostat screen or dial.
Your thermostat will come with an installation manual and in this manual, there will be a wiring guide. You should follow this guide when replacing or installing a new thermostat. Always remember to shut the furnace off before you expose any wires.
Heating and Air conditioning units account for the majority of a home’s energy usage. For this reason, it is a good idea to develop habits with efficiency in mind when regulating your home’s temperature.
Efficient Heating and Cooling
When heating or cooling your home there are certain steps you should take to ensure you achieve comfort in your home in the most efficient way possible. This saves you money in the long run by using less energy.
Electronic and smart thermostats are the most efficient ones on the market and should be used to replace outdated electromechanical thermostats. These newer models allow complete customization and programming to ensure a consistent and energy-efficient heating and cooling experience.
Thermostats serve the purpose of regulating the heating and cooling system in a building. Regardless of the model, this is achieved by communicating with your heater and air conditioner and signaling when they should turn on or off.
Modern electronic and smart thermostats, such as the Google Nest , allow the user peak efficiency when controlling the temperature of their home by customizable set-it and forget-it programming.