The primary task of the room thermostat is to help maintain the interior temperature at a comfortable level simply by activating a home heating or air conditioning source, by sensing the room temperature. Basically a heat-activated switch, a room thermostat includes a temperature sensing unit that triggers the switch to open or close, thus turning the home's hvac system on or off. Almost all household versions accomplish this using a low-voltage circuit. The thermostat commonly will do more than solely switching the heat off or on. Depending upon the kind of HVAC system  in your home, the room thermostat may also manage the system fan, which moves air throughout the home. Many thermostats may actually control the home's humidifier, dehumidifier, and ventilation system.

Heating Thermostat

Thermostat Features

When looking for a thermostat, you will come across an abundance of terminology pertaining to features. You may not understand exactly what these features really mean.

Programmable Fan / Circulation Fan

A typical room thermostat is going to activate the system fan anytime there's a demand for heating or cooling.  There's commonly a fan control position of the majority of room thermostats which is "ON". It operates the fan 100% of the time regardless if heating or cooling is occurring.? An innovative feature referred to as a "programmable" or "circulation" fan setting can cycle the system fan randomly even though there's no need for heating or cooling.? Using this fan mode  - you don't have to operate the fan constantly but you're able to draw additional air through your filter, and significantly improve temperature control, humidity and air filtering within a home.

Hold Features On Programmable Thermostats

A programmable thermostat will automatically manage heating and cooling at various settings, generally 4 unique periods during day.  In many circumstances you'll find it desirable to override the particular preset program, and get the thermostat to hold a specific setting for an extended time period.  For instance you're home sick from work - so you don't want the thermostat to "set back" or suppose you go on vacation so you want the thermostat to set back for 2 weeks.  Just about all programmable room thermostats will likely have some kind of hold capability.

Color touch screen weekly programmable underfloor heating thermostat

What Kind of Room Thermostat Should I Consider?

For most situations, the primary thing to think about when searching for thermostats will be system compatibility. Not every thermostat works together with every heating & cooling system. This question of compatibility is the place most home owners get caught when trying to upgrade their outdated thermostat. A look at the thermostat wiring can help you determine what will be compatible

For those who have electric baseboard heat, or if you think maybe you may use a high voltage thermostat - STOP HERE. Check with an electrical contractor. The voltages in these systems are able to kill. For people with a system such as this, you must contact a qualified professional for thermostat replacement.


One very popular new feature is "auto-changeover" In the past, it was necessary to manually change the thermostat from heating  to cooling .  A thermostat equipped with the auto-changeover function can automatically change from heating to cooling  and back with virtually no manual input.??


Non-programable room thermostats vs programable

A non-programmable thermostat provides basic temperature control. The heating or cooling setting will be maintained permanently, and doesn't change unless you adjust it. However - a programmable thermostat permits you to change when you activate the heating or cooling based on a pre-set timetable with pre-set temperature settings. Consequently, you won't run the equipment nearly as much when you're sleeping or when the home is not occupied.  Simply by turning your thermostat back 10 or 15 degrees for 8 hours, you'll save about 5% - 15% annually on your energy bill - a savings of about 1% per degree when the setback period is 8 hours long.
Usually, you will find 4 program time periods each day - Wake, Leave, Return, Sleep.  It's a typical practice to "set back" the thermostat during your "leave" as well as "sleep" program periods.