FAQ: How To Use My Thermostat?
Have you ever wanted to smash your thermostat with a baseball bat?
Every year, they come out with new types and designs for thermostats. It used to be so easy to just move the dial to the desired temperature.
Now days, it seems like you need to know how to program a computer if you want to set your thermostat. Most of the people that move into our senior communities, unless they knew this sort of thing before, aren’t interested in learning computer programming.
I’ve written this article for those of our customers who are wondering what we install, and some of the things that are good to know about these thermostats.
Even simple things can be tricky
What kind of thermostat do we install
I get asked this all the time: “Is my thermostat programable?”
No. At this time, we do not install programable thermostats. We probably won’t either, not unless the majority of our customers, or building codes demand it.
The reason we install basic thermostats, is because, unless you have a good understanding of how they work, many people will struggle with them.
I’m not saying that you personally are unable to figure them out. Many people love to have programable thermostats and that is great, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been called back to a home because somebody can’t figure out how to use their basic thermostat.
Since I get so many calls regarding these basic thermostats, I’ve listed the most common questions that I get called in to help with. Hopefully this will help you easily fix it on your own. If you still have questions, you’re still welcome to call one of us to help walk you through it.
Number one problem with thermostats
The number one reason I get a call back on a thermostat, is because it no longer turns on the furnace or the air conditioner. What is going on? It must be broken, right?
These thermostats are wired into your heating and cooling equipment with low voltage wires. These wires are for communicating with your equipment only. They tell it when to turn on or off, and which unit that needs to happen to.
They do not generally power your thermostat. The old mechanical thermostats didn’t have to worry about where to get their power. These new ones are all digital. They don’t suck a lot of power, but they need some to run that digital display. They get this power from a battery.
Therefore your thermostat will not turn anything on or off, and you’ll need to find where the batteries go in your thermostat.
You’ll easily know if this is the problem, because the digital display on your thermostat will be completely blank.
Second problem with thermostats
This is not as big of a problem, but I run into it a lot.
There are two temperature displays on your digital readout, but they don’t always show at the same time. If your thermostat reads at 76 degrees, that is the current temperature in your house.
If you press on the up or down arrow, you will see a new temperature, say, 80 degrees. This is the temperature that the thermostat is set to maintain.
If you want to lower the temperature to say, 72 degrees, make sure that the thermostat is switched to cool, then press the down arrow button for a second or two until it allows you to adjust the set temperature. Then press the down/up buttons until you have it set at whatever temperature you are most comfortable with.
Then you just need to wait for the machines to do their work.
This process may vary, depending on which thermostat we are installing at the time, but if you still have problems with it, and can’t find your instructions for the thermostat in question, let us know and we can have our HVAC contractor get you a new set.
Can I still get a programable thermostat?
Yes, you may. We don’t install them because of all the call backs we get from them. But you are more than welcome to install one for yourself.
You can either buy one from your local hardware store, or you can give our HVAC contractor a call. They usually have their phone number printed on your thermostat. For a price, they’d be happy to come in and switch out your basic thermostat with a programable one of your choice.