Do Smart Thermostats Really Save Money on Utilities?

December 7, 2020
Man controlling temprature

Keeping your Franklin & South Indy residence cozy can eat up a good amount of money. The average family spends about $172 on monthly utility bills, according to ENERGY STAR®, or approximately $2,060 each year. At least half of that goes to heating and cooling.

Many houses rely on programmable thermostats, but the majority of people don’t bother to set them. The process is time-consuming, complicated and only gives you a couple of options for desired temperatures. When your home stays at the same setting throughout the day, it requires gas and electricity and negatively impacts your monthly costs.

Smart thermostats pick up on your day-to-day activities and adjust the temp to accompany it. But can getting one really save you money on heating and cooling? Yes, and here’s why.

Studies Show Smart Thermostats Save on Energy Costs

Independent studies have determined these devices can lead to large savings.

These studies used home energy bills 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, generating an approximated 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 have rebates for smart thermostats because they’re ENERGY STAR®certified.

How Does a Smart Thermostat Work?

After your smart thermostat is installed, you’ll first use it just like any other thermostat. You’ll switch it up and down, so the thermostat can determine your wants. Then, it will get to work developing a program that helps you save money, whether you’re at your house or out and about. Since it geofences with your smartphone, you won’t have to put it on your list to adjust it when you go or come back.

Pros and Cons of Having a Smart Thermostat


As we covered prior, smart thermostats provide a lot of perks to your home and heating and cooling bill, like:

  • No need to program— Your smart thermostat will adjust to your routine, so you won’t be required to waste time adjusting programs or remember to turn it up or down.
  • Knows when you get home and take off— Because a lot of smart thermostats geofence with your phone, your home will be put into an energy-efficient setting when you leave and be comfy when you return.
  • Remote temperature supervision— You’ll be able to watch your residence’s temperature from just about anywhere, thanks to an app on your phone.
  • Monitor heating and cooling use— Many smart thermostats offer great data through their app, such as how long you required heating and cooling on a particular day.
  • Reminders— Select smart thermostats will alert you to critical maintenance tasks, such as when you’re due to get a new air filter.
  • Extra savings— Many local energy companies have rebates for smart thermostats, so contact with yours for more information.


Having said that, there are several points you should contemplate when considering installing a smart thermostat in your home:

  • Compatibility— Based on the type and age of your heating and cooling system, a smart thermostat might not function with it. If you’re not sure, it’s recommended to contact an HVAC specialist like Winters Heating and Cooling. We also suggest having it professionally installed. This ensures that you have the proper number of wires and that it’s linked accurately. Some systems don’t have a common wire, which leads to compatibility problems with a smart thermostat. This wire powers your thermostat, so if your house doesn’t have a C-wire, we can put one in.
  • Housing situation— If you own your residence and are planning to reside there for a long time, it’s a good investment to have a smart thermostat. If you’re planning to move shortly or rent, we advise delaying unless you will take the thermostat with you. If you rent, you’ll usually need to have your landlord’s permission first ahead of putting in a new thermostat.
  • Cost— Smart thermostats cost more than programmable thermostats, and we recommend having yours professionally installed. However, the energy savings over time can help pay for themselves.
  • Lifestyle— Does a family member work from home, or is someone often at the house? If that’s the case, you might not see as big of savings, but you’ll have the benefits of not having to program or adjust a thermostat.

Rely on Winters Heating and Cooling for Your Smart Thermostat Needs

At Winters Heating and Cooling, our main priority is to keep your home cozy while helping you conserve more heating and cooling bills. If you’re considering installing a smart thermostat, our specialists can help, from selecting the right model to expert installation. Call us at 317-406-5382 today to learn more.