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A Wifi Thermostat Review: Nest Learning Thermostat vs. Honeywell

Wifi Thermostat Review

Smart Thermostat Review: Nest vs. The Rest

Do you have a wifi-enabled, programmable thermostat yet? Many homeowners and business owners in Charleston and the Lowcountry are not aware they could be saving money on their energy bill by installing wifi-enabled, programmable thermostats in their homes or businesses, so we'd like to help everyone out by comparing some of the options that are available today.

The Basics: What Is A Wifi Thermostat?

First of all, we'd like to take a second to quickly review what we call "wifi thermostats". Essentially, wifi thermostats or "smart" thermostats are just like the thermostats you have in your home, except with the ability to connect to other devices in your house (or business) via your home's wifi internet connection. This connection allows you the ability to remotely control your thermostat from connected devices in your home/business, through use of an app.

In addition to the remote control ability, some smart thermostats are able "learn" from your manual thermostat adjustments to anticipate which temperatures you prefer according to time of day, if you have guests/customers in your home/business, and even when you're away for a few days or a few weeks.

Smart (wifi) thermostats have two goals in mind: saving you money on energy bills and saving you time by not having to manually adjust your thermostat yourself. Since a very large portion of your energy bills are related to the heating and/or cooling of your home or place of business, it only makes sense that doing so more efficiently will end up saving you money. The smart thermostat's learning capabilities increase your efficiency without taking up your valuable time.

Nest Thermostat Review: Outpacing The Rest

Overall Score: 9/10

Nest Thermostats, designed and developed by former Apple engineers, was the first true "learning" thermostat on the market. With a sleak, modern design, the Nest will learn your climate control habits over the first few weeks of use and then will set the temperature accordingly after that. Of course, you can always manually adjust the temperature whenever you want, but Nest will record those settings and adapt those usage patterns for future temperature changes.

Nest also allows you to see when you are saving on your energy bills. A green leaf will appear on your thermostat whenever you are cutting down your energy consumption. You can also receive emails/notifications about your monthly energy consumption so you can track your savings.

Design (10/10):

Features (9/10)

Ease of Use (9/10)

Price (8/10)

Honeywell Lyric Thermostat Review: Not Worth The Extra Money

Overall Score: 5.5/10

The Lyric Thermostat, which was designed by Honeywell to compete with Nest's thermostat (note the aesthetically similar design) just wasn't up to par with the quality of Nest. The material used (plastic) felt cheap to handle and is a harder install (which will cost you even more money).

The software/app used to control the thermostat was also not up to the Nest's standards but does offer many of the same features, except for the energy tracking feature, which was sorely missed. Overall, the Lyric could have potential if they cleaned up a few things but at a price that's more than Nest, you may as well go with Nest.

Design (7/10):

Features (6/10)

Ease of Use (5/10)

Price (4/10)

Honeywell Wifi RTH9590WF Thermostat Review: Nest's Top Competitor

Overall Score: 7/10

We thought Honeywell's RTH9590WF Wifi thermostat was Nest's top competitor among the thermostats we were reviewing. With voice-activation and connectivity to Honeywell's Total Connect Comfort mobile app, this thermostat's features rank right up there with Nests, with the exception of energy consumption monitoring, which was sorely missed (again).

Design-wise, it's not the "jewel" that Nest or Lyric is, but the interface is fairly simple and easy to use. Fair warning: the warranty on this model is only 1 year -- Nest comes with 2. This warranty has us stumped as most Honeywell products come with 5 year warranties?

Design (6/10):

Features (7/10)

Ease of Use (9/10)

Price (6/10)

Honeywell Wifi RTH8580WF Thermostat Review: Lackluster

Overall Score: 4/10

In what now looks like an old model, the Honeywell RTH8580WF was severely lacking in design, feature availability (outside of the standard remote capabilities) and even falls short of handling some heating systems (does not work with electric baseboard heat (120-240 V) - as noted on Honeywell's site ).

Performance-wise, it stands up to to the rest, but doesn't offer the rich array of options available with Nest or the Honeywell Wifi RTH9590WF thermostat.

Design (4/10):

Features (4/10)

Ease of Use (4/10)

Price (4/10)

So there you have it: what are your thoughts about our wifi thermostat review? Agree? Disagree? Want us to review a thermostat we missed? Let us know about it on Facebook!

Looking to book an HVAC contractor in Charleston to install your wifi thermostat? We'd be glad to help; give us a call (843) 870-2076.
Marshall Gay
Marshall Gay
Marshall Gay is the founder and owner of Carolina Climate Control. With over 14 years experience in the HVAC industry, he’s committed to providing better, more affordable HVAC services for Charleston and the Lowcountry.
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