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Thermostat Recommendation 2022- What to Buy?

ScoutRider Member Posts: 22
I bought 2 new Google Nest Learning thermostats last year- and they cost me my heating system and then some. I am now heartily mistrustful of "smart" thermostats, although I spend time away from the house in the winter, and like to be able to use my phone to monitor and adjust the heat in the house.

I would like the simple reliable functionality of the old mercury switch Honeywell's I had years ago, but know that is no longer possible. What should I be looking for?

Thank you!


  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 21,110
    You can't beat the reliability of the old mercury switch Honeywell. The problem arises not with the monitoring -- pretty much any of the recent home monitors can do that, if not directly then by hooking up various sensors to them. It comes with the "and adjust" part of the equation. Honeywell has a number of wi-fi connected thermostat models ranging from moderately simple to very whizzy. Ecobees seem to work well enough. For that matter, so do Nests, though they do require some finagling.

    They will all require an independent power source.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,132
    Please explain what happened OP. There are better wifi thermostats, well anything is better, than a Nest. Honeywell makes a bunch of nice ones.
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 3,878
    You learned the hard way about NEST. 
    Now what are your requirements?
  • SteamingatMohawk
    SteamingatMohawk Member Posts: 840
    Look into the Honeywell wireless thermostat with wifi gateway capability. I have FocusPro TH5320R and the THM6000R7001 Gateway. It's a couple of years old model.

    The thermostat is wireless to the control panel, so it easy to move it to a different location and it is wireless to the gateway. The gateway plugs into a router and gives you wifi access from anywhere you have wifi.

    I own a rental, but do not live there. It cost some, but now I can monitor and control it from my cell phone or computer and don't have to leave the basement if I am doing something in the house that needs the thermostat setting changed. Two birds with one stone.

    Keep it simple and this, honestly, is.
    HVACNUT Member Posts: 5,025
    The Honeywell TH9320WF5003 is nice and simple. It does need constant 24v which all smart thermostats do anyway. 
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 5,632
    edited March 2022
    If we only had Popular Mechanics or Popular Science magazines now-a-days.   There would be an article about some homegrown garage inventions that could be attached to the thermostat like this clock. Then connect to a landline and solve all your problems  
    Just dial the phone for the temperature to go up and a cassette recording could tell you “ at the tone… the temperature will be… seventy…two… degrees….”  and 30 seconds… Beeep
    Edward F Young. Retired HVAC ContractorSpecialized in Residential Oil Burner and Hydronics
  • nicholas bonham-carter
    nicholas bonham-carter Member Posts: 8,573
    That looks like a shutoff clock for the thermostat, and not a setback from a higher temperature, to a lower, and viseversa, which for steam systems we do not recommend, if you want fuel consumption savings and comfort.—NBC
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 19,275
    I have had good results with Ecobees on a couple shops and my home. Easy to setup, good support, no problem em login in.

    That T87 Honeywell round stat is still available as an electronic version, if you are nostalgic.

    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • MikeAmann
    MikeAmann Member Posts: 746
    That device shown does indeed change the thermostat setting.
    Look right in the middle at the red gear. 11pm turns the setting down. 5am it goes back up.
    Looks like 72 for the daytime hours and 55 overnight.
    This is something that I would have done back-in-the-day.
    This thing is even battery-powered. See the Ray-O-Vac Alkaline?
  • HomerJSmith
    HomerJSmith Member Posts: 2,144
    edited March 2022
    I just installed 1 Ecobee and 2 Honeywell Wifi thermostats in a house. I ran 18 ga 3 conductor cable to the Taco panel replacing the 2 conductor 20 ga cable. I replaced the Taco 15 VA transformer with a 30 VA transformer.

    One of the Honeywell thermostat wouldn't connect with the router, no matter what. I returned it and replaced it with another duplicate. They all work great. I would buy Ecobee and Honeywell before I would ever buy a Nest.

    Make sure you get the latest model # of the thermostat you decide to use. Also, make sure you use the app that the manufacturer puts out. There are after market apps that are also on the app store, they may or may not work so good.

  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 19,275
    I bought the certified refurbished Lite directly from Ecobee.

    I buy my power tools this way also. Often they are sales demo, just not in the original boxes. Same warranty and support.
    Amazon usually has a link to click for finding "other deals" I go with Acme Tools or another tool company I recognize, if the manufacturer doesn't have a deal.

    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • ScoutRider
    ScoutRider Member Posts: 22
    Thanks for all the comments and recommendations. Someone asked what happened with the Nest thermostats. In short-

    These were installed on my entirely new system; Bosch combi-boiler, 160 linear feet of Baseray C.I. baseboard. System went operational in late November, and I was on site for a month of operation. We traveled out of state for an extended period, and monitored the system through the Nests. One zone had a mind of its own, failing to hold settings occasionally, so i was in the habit of closely monitoring the temp. One night, I adjusted the temp up a few degrees, outside temp was indicated to drop to -9. On checking first thing in the morning, one Nest indicated as offline, the second appeared on. Quick check with my Ring cams, wifi and power were on. I had my contractor go straight to the house to find lots of shattered cast iron. Nests suck.
  • MikeAmann
    MikeAmann Member Posts: 746
    HVACNUT Member Posts: 5,025
    Was Nest Sence enabled? I'm not a fan of the Nest but it won't take much to freeze a pipe using any setback when its -9° and there's a cold draft getting in somewhere. 
    Just because it was showing off line on the app doesn't mean it wasn't powered (R and C) and trying to maintain a minimum default temperature. 
    I'm not sure the thermostat is fully to  blame here. I think some air sealing is in order. 

  • lowercanada
    lowercanada Member Posts: 11
    that Rube Goldeberg setback is fabulous.....although I can't quite decipher how it works