Ecobee3 Wi-Fi Thermostat

Best WiFi Thermostat for Total Home Control (2nd Gen)

Why people love it
  • Makes it easy to set different temperatures in each room
  • Easy to control, both via the main unit and the smartphone app
  • Packed with features to make user control easy
Cons

Temperature on the EcoBee unit always reads a few degrees higher, and the thermostat overheats.

Highlights

The Ecobee3 has remote sensors that read the temperature in more than one room. 

  • Mobile apps to control HVAC remotely
  • Remote sensors deliver the right temperature in the rooms that matter most
  • Understands when to turn on equipment based on your home’s unique energy profile and the weather outside
Details

Performance: This is a thermostat that's made with your convenience in mind. It's compatible with up to 32 individual sensors, which you can place in each room of the house. The sensors will then control the HVAC system for each room and give you precisely the desired temperature for just that one room. Multiple climates, baby!

The device interface is intuitive, with a sleek touchscreen that works well and is easy to control. The menu layout is easy to navigate, making it simple for you to find all of the features (see below).  The device has its own built-in schedules for heating/cooling, but you can customize them according to the time you spend in and out of the house.

There is a flaw in the design, however. The main unit tends to overheat, which causes it to sense a higher temperature in the room. This means that the A/C is always running, as it's trying to cool down the "heat" in the room, which is really just coming from the thermostat itself. This can lead to high energy costs and faster wearing out of your HVAC system.

Features: One of the best things about the Ecobee is its many features. The Historical Trend Analysis will give you a detailed look at your power use for the last days/weeks/months, helping you to figure out ways to reduce energy usage. The thermostat will send an alarm notification when the temperature or humidity are too low/high, and the Occupancy Detected feature uses motion sensors to detect the presence of people in the house/rooms. If the room is empty, the HVAC system is shut off for just that room.

Remote access (via the Wi-Fi) is easy thanks to the smartphone app, and Ecobee offers free-for-life use of the app and database. You can always connect to your thermostat, no matter where in the world you are.

Price: At $250, it's a pretty pricey system, and comes with a few more bugs than the similarly-priced Nest. If you live alone, you're better off with the Nest as the smart thermostat of choice. However, for large family homes filled with people who prefer different warm/cool temperatures in the various living and public areas, this is the device you want.

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