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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Monroe County, PA
    Posts
    99

    Thermostats - Upcoming models?

    Background

    So we just bought another house for vacation rentals - a house with baseboard electric heat and no A/C. Thankfully it has a full basement with open rafters, so we can do something about that.

    I now have an HVAC contractor I like and trust - he's a get-it-done kind of guy who's been in the business for many years. Together, we decided on another Goodman system for this house (DSZC16048 & AVPTC4260). We even agreed on a good location for the condenser so any defrost noises it makes (one of my pet peeves) will be far away from the bedrooms.

    So now it's down to the thermostat.

    Since this is a vacation rental (and the house has WiFi internet but no telephone line), I'd like to utilize one of the newer internet enabled thermostats that lets me not only set the thermostat temp, but also check the house temp and see where guests have set the thermostat while they are there. Ecobee, 3MFiltrete/RadioThermostat, and a number of others have come onto the market and are starting to build some decent reputation.

    My contractor is a bit slower to accept new tech, and I can tell by his voice that he'd much prefer staying with a tried and true bundled Goodman thermostat. He said that Goodman has some sort of remote enabled thermostat, but he thinks it is land-line telephone only. He has to research it a bit and get back to me. Meanwhile, I've looked through Goodman and other websites, and can only find obscure references to an add-on module for a few Goodman/Amana thermostats (Venstar re-brands?), but no specific model numbers and definitely no support for anything except land lines.

    QUESTIONS:

    1) Anyone out there know if Goodman is coming out with a WiFi enabled unit with features similar to the third party Tstats?

    2) Assuming there isn't something new from Goodman imminent (install at end of this month),
    • Is it better to ask my contractor to just put on the minimum feature thermostat that supports the 3H2C of the heat pump and wait a year for a new TStat to come out and then upgrade?
    • Or would I be out of line to push him to consider installing the system with an Ecobee (increase of materials cost charged to me of course).
    • Or is there something other than the current crop of EcoBee and RadioThermostat models on the horizon that I should be waiting for anyway?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Central NJ Area
    Posts
    888
    Maybe check out Venstars brand models.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    4,423
    If I am not mistaken, Goodman has something going on with EcoBee. Your contractor needs to check with his distributor, and keep in mind the counter guy may not be up to speed either! Also Honeywell has a pretty nice setup as well as Trane with Schlage Link.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Central NJ Area
    Posts
    888
    Should of just invested in a Carrier infinity system with the extra add-ons and future updates you can add modules to the system to remote control or network into automation systems. Infinity is my favorite type of system control. Its been ahead of other manufacturers for sometime now. Just the fact that it logs any type of issues that might arise and you can replace a part before something fails is worth every $. Reading static pressure! gotta love that thing. The new one is going to be color touch screen, wi-fi, plus much more.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Palm Beach,Fl.
    Posts
    990
    Honeywell Prestige IAQ or Focus Pro Wireless is my go to for those features. You do need a separate internet gateway from Honeywell which is the only downside but the service itself is free.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Portland OR
    Posts
    2,030
    I second using the Prestige HD its what I use at my house. It also has lots of control for upgrades and add ons, although probably not needed for a rental. With any iPad or Internet computer you can monitor and change temps and even look at all your properties under one login assuming the properties have a prestige HD with redlink gateway.

    I would stay away from the Trane/Schlage link simply because it costs $99 a year and has to many features.
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    4,423
    Quote Originally Posted by SkyHeating View Post
    I would stay away from the Trane/Schlage link simply because it costs $99 a year and has to many features.
    Other than they have the ability to control the front door of there rental using the Schlage Lock feature. I use it on the back door to our shop with each employee with a different code. It e-mails me with the time, date and name of the entering employee. Temporary codes could also be used for maintenance or cleaning services of the rental.
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Monroe County, PA
    Posts
    99
    Thanks for all the feedback guys!

    I've read up on the Honeywell Redline interface and the Prestige (and FocusPro). They'll get the job done.

    I did read more into the EcoBee and am impressed its functionality and can see where the ability to see a history of temp settings would come in handy after guests leave though. I guess I'll have to do the classic price, features, reliability evaluation.

    And still high on the concern list is settling on something my contractor feels comfortable installing. I can't imagine that he would have a problem with anything Honeywell, but I would assume the newer more advanced models would have more installer controls to set up and perhaps even slightly different wiring suppositions.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Jurupa Valley, CA
    Posts
    1,787
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Campbell View Post
    Thanks for all the feedback guys!

    I've read up on the Honeywell Redline interface and the Prestige (and FocusPro). They'll get the job done.

    I did read more into the EcoBee and am impressed its functionality and can see where the ability to see a history of temp settings would come in handy after guests leave though. I guess I'll have to do the classic price, features, reliability evaluation.

    And still high on the concern list is settling on something my contractor feels comfortable installing. I can't imagine that he would have a problem with anything Honeywell, but I would assume the newer more advanced models would have more installer controls to set up and perhaps even slightly different wiring suppositions.
    The contractor is going to have the same wires to hook up with any thermostat offering. The only difference is the internet connections part (if it's wifi, it also shouldn't be all that difficult). If he doesn't want to try it, you can likely find a neighborhood 14 year old to take care of it.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Lancaster Pennsylvania
    Posts
    60
    Tom,

    I personally would go with the EcoBee. I have one in my home and have installed around 10-15 for customers. I have also installed a bunch of the TRANE HD stat. Both are great products.

    The reason I would recomend the Ecobee is because it is one of the easier smart thermostats to set up and control. Also there is no monthly fee like there is with the TRANE HD stat.

    There is a list of questions the contractor goes through and it shows him the wiring diagram right on the thermostat screen,

    I have found that Ecobee's customer support is pretty excelent.

    It is also updatable, so Ecobee can update the software with new features which is done automatically.

    It does have a vary easy to use Iphone or Android app also.

    Cost compared to the Trane stat is a bit lower also.

    I dont have experiance with the infinity controller or some of the other ones mentioned.

    Good Luck,
    Jordan

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