Spacefem (spacefem) wrote,

how thermostats work

I mentioned to someone that our house was awfully cold this week but we were powering through it on principle. The last week of April, we had a string of really hot humid days, so we caved and turned on the air conditioner for the first time. We tried just opening lots of windows but were generally miserable and we knew we had a party and houseguests coming so might as well make the switch, no point in making them all sweaty.

Then the next week the temperature dropped into the 40-60°f range and things cooled off FAST, you'd wake up in the morning and the house was 63. But with the forecast calling for 80s a few days later, I was not going to flip the heat on. We got the sweaters out. Our meal ideas all involved some long baking times.

Talking to friends I got a lot of "oh you're not part of the modern world?" type comments about my week. Most people have thermostats now that do the heat/AC flipping for them. If you want your house constantly between 68-73, it'll do it... heat in the morning! AC in the afternoon! Just always using whatever energy it takes, never taking advantage of what nature is doing, never being aware of the fact that tomorrow's forecast will call for AC so why not cut back on the heat, let the house get colder to prepare for it? Everyone just rolled their eyes at me for not figuring this out and for my house not being "smart".

I was proud of us for suffering through a few days with blankets and sweaters, in the name of energy efficiency and thriftiness... apparently that is not a source of pride if you've got technology.

So I guess I won't talk about my old house temperature woes since it gets me laughed at. And I won't talk about my gas or electric bill being close to nothing this month, most people just auto-pay that so who cares anyway.

I am curious to know if there are smart thermostats that are really MY kind of smart, that can anticipate the craziness of a Kansas springtime and open up the temperature variation in response to the forecast? If it's going to be 110 out, cool extra in the morning to prepare. If it's 50 today but 80 tomorrow, don't heat to 68? Smart thermostats for very cheap people, that do more than just hold to a single range for all seasons. I'd invent it but something tells me it wouldn't sell at all... people would complain. They would have to be uncomfortable sometimes.

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