Whether you just moved into a new home or want to upgrade the one you have, an essential piece of hardware you should have is a smart thermostat. A smart thermostat improves your home’s energy efficiency, makes your home more comfortable to live in, saves you money and makes your life easier. The market for these kinds of devices has grown in recent years, with a plethora of different models flooding stores.
However, there are two that stand out from the rest, which we’ll compare for you now: the Honeywell Programmable Thermostat versus the Ecobee 3 Lite Thermostat. Read on to find out what makes them tops in the field and which one works better for you.
Honeywell has been in the business of creating home appliances since the early 1900s, and released the classic and popular T-86 Round Thermostat in 1953, which is still found in many homes to this day. As time and technologies change and improve, so too has the company evolved. Check out some of the top features with their Honeywell RTH9580WF Smart Programmable Thermostat.
- Smart Design — The digital interface is straightforward, giving you the info you need in an easy and accessible format. The Honeywell RTH9585WF1004 shows you indoor and outdoor temperatures and humidity information right on the home screen. Unlike futuristic designs of other devices, all the info you need is easy to find. No digging around various menu options makes the smart thermostat enjoyable to use for everyone, regardless of their technological proficiency.
- Control From Anywhere — The Total Connect Comfort App from Honeywell lets you control the smart thermostat from anywhere using your computer, tablet, or smartphone. Remotely access the controls whether you’re outside or inside the home, making life simpler and easier. The Total Connect Comfort App works with iOS and Android, so if you’re stuck at work a little longer than usual and have your phone with you, you can simply change the temperature so when you get home, everything is already set up the way you like it.
- Smart Auto System Alerts — The Honeywell Programmable Thermostat learns your heating and cooling habits, making smart decisions on controlling the temperature of your home, saving you money. The technology also learns how much time it takes to heat your home to your desired temperature and begins either heating or cooling so your home is already at the desired temperature at the scheduled time.
For instance, say you have your programming set up so that your home starts warming up for when you get home for work, after a few days, the Honeywell will know how long it takes to get to your desired temperature, and start heating up in time so that things are already where you want them by the time you arrive.
- Customizable Color Touchscreen — You can change the color of the touchscreen controls, allowing all kinds of different colors to choose from. Great if you want the unit to better compliment the wall or room that you have the thermostat installed in.
Ecobee has been at the top of the smart thermostat market for awhile. Their Ecobee 3 was a major model in the market, and they’ve since revised that popular model with their new Ecobee 3 Lite Thermostat. Here are a couple of the top features:
- Attractive Design — The Ecobee 3 Lite is made with a sleek design, which is great if your home has a modern look to it. The smart thermostat also comes with a trim plate that you can mount the unit to for added attractiveness.
- Wide Range of Control Options — Like many smart thermostats, the Ecobee 3 Lite works with your iOS and Android device, but has the added benefit of being controlled with multiple different software implementations, like the Apple HomeKit, Amazon Echo, Samsung SmartThings, Wink and IFTTT.
- Control Hot / Cold Spots — A unique feature that Ecobee has over their competition is the ability to install Room Sensors throughout your home or office. These great pieces of hardware sense the temperature in individual rooms and relays that information back to the Ecobee 3 Lite. As the main unit typically only reads the temperature in the hallway (or wherever it happens to be installed) other rooms may not be the same temperature. If your bedroom is a bit colder than the living room, you can have things set up to keep both rooms at the same, comfortable temperature. The sensors will also know if no one is home, or if people are not occupying a room, adjusting the temperature as necessary.
- Energy Savings — On average, the Ecobee 3 Lite will see you saving 23% annually on your heating and cooling costs, and is backed by an ENERGY STAR certification. The Ecobee website also has set up a resource for you to calculate exactly how much money you can save, by correlating the energy costs in your area, comparing your inside temp to the weather outside, as well as sending you up to the minute weather alerts to prepare temperatures accordingly.
Honeywell Programmable vs the Ecobee 3 Lite: Similarities
Both the Honeywell RTH9580WF Smart Programmable Thermostat and the Ecobee 3 Lite Thermostat offer a strong list of features that you want for your home if you’re thinking of installing a smart thermostat. Similar features include:
- Being able to control settings and temperature remotely using either a computer, iOS, Android or Amazon Alexa. Both devices also work on your home’s wifi network.
- Save on heating and cooling costs due to the smart way that they manage your home’s temperature.
- Easy to read home screen with an intuitive interface, which lets you see all the temperature information without having to navigate different menus.
- Attractive designs that won’t take away from your home’s décor.
Honeywell RTH9585WF1004 Thermostat and the Ecobee 3 Lite Differences
When it comes down to the Honeywell Programmable versus the Ecobee 3 Lite, both of these smart thermostats are worth your money, so it’s good to also know how the devices differ, in order to make the best possible purchase decision. As some homes are built differently and people’s needs also vary, some features may be more valuable to you than others.
- Installation: Installing the Ecobee 3 Lite is made a little simpler than the Honeywell Programmable Thermostat, mainly due to the fact that the Honeywell requires a C Wire in order to power it, which if you don’t have, would need to be installed. However the Ecobee 3 Lite includes a Power Extender Kit along with the unit. The Power Extender Kit works by taking the power takes from the furnace and redirecting it through wiring that already exists in your home. This saves on the cost of having a 3rd party contractor or handyman come out, as well as limits the amount of work needed for installation.
- Pricing: The Honeywell Programmable Thermostat and the Ecobee 3 Lite are close in price, but the added cost of the remote sensors with the Ecobee 3 Lite may make it too rich for some. Depending on how many rooms you want to be controlled, the price can really jump.
- Design & Display: The Honeywell has a color display along with the option to change the color to better match its surroundings. Although the Ecobee also has a LCD touchscreen with some color capabilities, there is not as much customization available. Some people may also prefer the simple silver design and square shape of the Honeywell to the styalized and some what futuristic look of the Ecobee, as it might be more difficult to fit the Ecobee into your home’s already existing décor.
- Control: While both devices offer you control through a computer, iOS, Android, and Amazon Echo, the Ecobee broadens what it connects with, including Apple’s HomeKit being enabled out of the box, Samsung SmartThings, Wink and IFTTT. This offers much greater support. Even though most people probably have a computer or a smartphone, the Ecobee lets you put more of the services that you already have to work, especially if you already use those services extensively throughout your home.
When making your final decision on the Honeywell Programmable Thermostat comparing to the Ecobee 3 Lite, you can’t go wrong as they are both great smart thermostats. Whether you pick one or the other comes down to what kind of existing system you already have in place and what the layout is for your home. For instance, homes without a C Wire easily accessible will be better off with the Ecobee3 Lite as it supplies a Power Extender Kit.
For people who are just getting into smart wireless technology or who want a simpler set-up may find that the Honeywell Programmable Thermostat, works better for them. Although programming heating/cooling is intuitive on both devices, there is more complicated set up required for the Ecobee 3 Lite Thermostat due to the inclusion of Ecobee’s Remote Sensors, not to mention the Ecobee 3 Lite with Remote Sensors is more expensive than the Honeywell.