heating and AC, plumbing & electric
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heating and AC, plumbing & electric 479.900.0784
December 10, 2021

PSA: Smart Thermostats Purchased Online

DIY home upgrades, and “smart” devices are a huge trend this year, and many homeowners are attempting to make their home more autonomous, “smarter”, and high-tech. One of the first things that homeowners choose to purchase to upgrade their home is a smart thermostat. These thermostats are usually digital, sleek, and claim to make your HVAC system & home more efficient. We would like to clarify and highlight some common issues that our customers & other homeowners have brought to our attention regarding smart thermostats.

What is a Smart Thermostat?

A smart thermostat is a Wi-Fi enabled device that automatically adjusts heating and cooling temperature settings in your home for optimal performance.

Smart thermostats that earn the ENERGY STAR label have been independently certified, based on actual field data, to deliver energy savings.

While system designs may vary, common smart thermostat features include:


  • Many smart thermostats learn your temperature preferences and establish a schedule that automatically adjusts to energy-saving temperatures when you are asleep or away.
  • Geofencing allows your smart thermostat to know when you’re on the way home and automatically adjusts your home’s temperature to your liking.


  • Wi-Fi enabled thermostats allow you to control your home’s heating and cooling remotely through your smartphone.
  • ENERGY STAR certified smart thermostats quickly enter a low-power standby mode when inactive.


  • Smart thermostats provide equipment use and temperature data you can track and manage.
  • Periodic software updates ensure your smart thermostat is using the latest algorithms and energy-saving features available.

Most Popular Smart Thermostat Brands & Models

  • Ecobee SmartThermostat
  • Nest Learning Thermostat
  • Amazon Smart Thermostat
  • Honeywell RTH8580WF Wi-Fi Thermostat
  • Trane XL824 Programmable Comfort Control Wi-Fi Thermostat

trane thermostat

Potential Issues With Aftermarket Smart Thermostats

Aftermarket thermostats that are not directly listed as compatible by an equipment manufacturer may have issues when installed with newer or high efficiency HVAC systems. Originally, smart thermostats were developed to work with older systems, and be the “brains” of the HVAC system. Today, many systems are much more advanced, and come installed with brand specific smart thermostats. Just like universal remotes, which were made to work with older model TVs & no longer work with newer “smart TVs”, many aftermarket thermostats are very similar in the fact that they function much like a universal remote.


Will an Aftermarket Smart Thermostats Work With My HVAC System?

If you have an older model HVAC system (more than ~15 years old) then an aftermarket smart thermostat may work with your system. If your HVAC system is newer, variable speed, or a high efficiency unit, then it may not work correctly with your entire system. Alternatively, if you are equipping your home with other smart home devices, then the aftermarket smart thermostat may pair well with your existing setup. We recommend that you refer to your system manual and the smart thermostat support for full compatibility lists.

Our Recommended Smart Thermostats

We have seen great results with the Ecobee SmartThermostat in most Trane & Lennox systems. If you are looking for a smart thermostat with voice control, digital assistance, and smart speakers that integrates with most HVAC systems, then the Ecobee is an excellent choice.

Looking to Install a Smart Thermostat?

When you’re ready to upgrade & digitize your home, Paschal Air, Plumbing & Electric can help! We install most major brands of smart thermostats (some exceptions apply) to enhance the comfort of your home. If you have questions regarding smart thermostats, give us a call at 479-900-0784.