gray Nest thermostat displaying at 63

At this point, it’s no secret that smart thermostats can save you money. Depending on where you look, adding a smart thermostat can save you 20%-30% annually on heating and cooling costs. Automating the AC is an easy way to save money while also improving your home comfort.

We’ll talk quickly about my setup, go through some thoughts on affordability, and hit on the customization options.

gray Nest thermostat displaying at 63

Let’s talk about the AC


Okay, so one thing I didn’t talk about was how much these things cost. You don’t have to go out and buy the $189 top-of-the-line Ecobee to save money and accomplish the same thing. Amazon has their own thermostat that is very affordable, starting at $79.

Additionally, swapping out a “dumb” thermostat may qualify you for rebates from your electric utility provider. AEP, for example, credits my bill every summer for allowing them to bump the thermostat a few degrees during peak demand. When its all said and done, between the rebates and the cost reduction in electric bills, automating the AC pays for itself.


Most of the thermostat apps have a robust set of customization options. I went a little further and integrated my system with Node-RED to allow for even more customization. The point is, if you take the time to really fine-tune your routines, you can create a smart home that is comfortable regardless of the time of year with little to no input from you.

Adding multiple sensors around the home can further enhance the system, and if you really want to go all-out, add smart vents to create custom zones. Combined with temperature sensors, your system can then take care of those pesky rooms that are always too cold or too hot, or even only provide climate control to occupied areas.

Author: Zack

Pharmacist, tech guy, pianist, lover of beer, gamer, beach bum. Probably missed something. Just assume I'm into a little bit of everything.


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