Anyone who owns an HVAC system knows that a thermostat is also a must-have. It enables you to have the heating and cooling at your preferred temperature. Thermostats have evolved from the manual traditional ones to more innovative and smart ones. Programmable thermostats, for instance, allow you to create schedules ahead of time, so you don’t have to constantly adjust the thermostat.
While wifi-enabled thermostats usually feature a fancier LCD and they can connect with other devices in the home.
Smart thermostats are increasingly becoming popular because of their features and modes that help you save energy costs. They sometimes have algorithms that help the thermostat figure out whether there is someone at home or not. The thermostat itself knows when to turn on and off. They are usually equipped with sensors or even geofencing capabilities which help the thermostat know whether there is a need for temperature adjustment.
Some smart thermostats also have learning capabilities that learn the habits and patterns set by the user at the start. It helps the thermostat to devise schedules in the future without any involvement from the user. Smart thermostats are also compatible with smart home systems, although every thermostat is compatible with specific ones. Since there is so much variety in smart thermostats, choosing one is not easy. I made the mistake of buying one that did not pair with my smart home system.
Thus, my hunt for a thermostat that was ideal for me led me to discover the Totaline Thermostat. This review will help you decide whether it is suitable for your needs, and will come up with a few alternatives if not.
Factors to consider before buying Smart Thermostats:
Compatibility with HVAC system
Smart thermostats should be compatible with the HVAC system at home. The power requirement should be apt and the thermostats should cater to the type of systems such as low, line voltage, or others like heat pumps and ventilators. A lot of smart thermostats come with a c-wire, which is why you should make sure you either already have a c-wire connection installed, because if not then you will have to get one.
This feature is found in many smart thermostats, especially simpler ones. It detects your phone’s GPS signals to know whether you are at home or not. A pre-specified radius helps it to know. If it doesn’t detect your signals then it will automatically adjust the temperature to a more energy-saving one.
You can choose to get a professional installation but most people opt for DIY installation. You must get a thermostat that is easy to install especially if you don’t want to spend additional money on this. Some systems are indeed more complicated than others and require professional installation.
Smart home compatibility
Smart thermostats are often compatible with voice assistants like the Amazon Echo, Apple HomeKit, Google Home Assistant. These allow the thermostat to be controlled with simple voice commands and to add more convenience to the user’s life. Some also come with built-in Amazon Alexa.
The Totaline Thermostat and its Alternatives
The Totaline Thermostat is a very reasonably priced budget-friendly smart thermostat. It requires a 24V c-wire and is made for HVAC systems with 2-stage heat, 1-stage cool for gas, electric, heat pump, and hydronic heat pumps. It features a backlit display, color-coded keys, and also an LED indicator to show whether it is heating or cooling. Moreover, it can be programmed for up to 4 periods in a day. The unique thing about this thermostat is that you can choose to make it programmable or non-programmable.
It is an easy-to-install thermostat with a simple white interface and a small unit that displays the temperature.
1. Honeywell Home Programmable Thermostat
The Honeywell Home Programmable Thermostat is quite similar in features to the Totaline thermostat. It is a few bucks cheaper as well and offers flexible programmability. This thermostat too has a backlit display which is quite simple and easy-to-understand. It, however, comes with a smart response learning mode that adjusts the temperature automatically. The Totaline thermostat is much more simple in comparison.
Honeywell home thermostats also come with reminders for filter replacement and come with the automatic changeover from heat to cool.
2. Lux Geo Smart Thermostat
The Lux Geo Smart Thermostat is another alternative to the Totaline thermostat. It too requires a c-wire and does not have learning abilities but it is compatible with Alexa which makes it a smart thermostat. It also has an iOS and Android app, that provides further ease of use for many. More importantly, it comes with geofencing which is sought after by many. The same cannot be said about the Totaline thermostat.
- Compatible with heat pumps and 2-stage heat, 1-stage cool with gas or electric systems
- Filter change reminder and UV light indicators
- Keypad lock
- Can choose programmability or a lack of
- Auto changeover
- No noise
- Programmable up to 4 times
- C-wire connection needed
- No remote sensors
- Not a smart thermostat
The Totaline thermostat is 1-Day programmable which means you can set 4 different schedules in a day. However, the program remains the same every day, which means it is not a 7-Day programmable. The programming is however flexible.
2. LED light indicator
The thermostat comes with an LED light indicator that glows red when the thermostat is heating and green when cooling. This is useful as it helps the users know which mode it is on especially since it has an auto changeover feature.
3. Multistage thermostat
While the Totaline thermostat is not suitable for 2-wire, heat-only systems, it is compatible with heat pumps. It also works well with 2-stage heat, and 1-stage cool gas or electric systems.
What users think of The Totaline Thermostat
As per my research, The Totaline Thermostat is liked by many for its simplicity, programmability, and ease-of-use. Not only is it budget-friendly but it is reliable and delivers high performance as promised. Many users praise this installation as it is quite easy to install within a few minutes. Moreover, its display is backlit and it shows the temperature readings without any problems. It is also liked for its battery backup which is not something that is found in most other thermostats.
The thermostat makes scheduling a breeze. Many users like its auto changeover. Especially those that live in areas where it is very hot during the day and colder at night. The temperature regulation is also straightforward, and the programming overall is very flexible.
Final thoughts on The Totaline Thermostat
Overall, the Totaline Thermostat is a programmable thermostat that is quite budget-friendly as well. If you expect it to offer sensing capabilities or other smart features then this is not it. It is a simple, 1-Day programmable thermostat, which is easy-to-install as well. It is compatible with heat pumps, and it makes no noise and is thus a great option for bedrooms.
However, its c-wire requirement and lack of compatibility with other smart devices may not make it suitable for many. Hence, we recommend it only to those who want to add the flexibility of a programmable thermostat in their lives. The article lists other options to the Totaline thermostat which vary slightly in terms of features.