Programmable vs Smart Thermostats

The Differences Between

Programmable vs Smart Thermostats

Both programmable and smart thermostats let you control the temperature of your house while saving money on energy costs. Programmable and smart thermostats can be set to increase and decrease the temperature automatically without ever needing to touch the device once it has been set, in contrast to manual thermostats that remain at the setting you set until you manually adjust it during the day.

What, then, really distinguishes today’s programmable vs smart thermostats?

Be informed of all your alternatives if you still use a manual thermostat in your house and are thinking about upgrading. Let’s examine some of the key distinctions between programmable thermostats and smart thermostats, as well as the advantages of each, to help you find the best choice for your needs and begin reducing your monthly energy costs.

Programmable Thermostats

You may set your home’s temperature in advance for a number of days and times throughout the week by using a programmable thermostat. Programmable thermostats come in a wide range of options, from those that let you set the temperature for every day of the week to those that let you set separate settings for weekdays and weekends. In other words, a programmable thermostat can be configured to adjust the temperature so that your heating and cooling system isn’t operating unnecessarily when no one is home if you and your family are away at work and school Monday through Friday.

When used properly, programmable thermostats enable you to reduce your home’s energy costs by up to 20%.

Smart Thermostats

When it comes to heating and cooling your home, a smart thermostat is more intuitive and advanced than a programmable thermostat. They actually pick up on your behavior, mimic your temperature changes, and then start doing it on their own. You may control these Wi-Fi equipped thermostats from a computer, smartphone, tablet, or other device by using an app and an internet connection. Smart thermostats also correctly track and manage data on the energy use of your home, enabling you to evaluate the efficiency of your HVAC system.

smart thermostat vs programmable thermostat

Programmable vs Smart Thermostats
Which One Suits You Best?

It is true that both smart and programmable thermostats have cost-cutting advantages. Which one you choose is entirely up to you, but bear in mind that a smart thermostat will cost a little more due to its advanced capabilities. However, if you prefer the notion of being able to adjust your home’s temperature remotely or have a flexible schedule, you’re looking for a smart thermostat. A programmable thermostat will be useful for you if you just have a tendency to forget to regulate the temperature of your home before you leave for the day at work.

Do you have concerns about putting in a smart thermostat or a programmable thermostat at your house? The BNG team is ready to help! Contact us today!

How to Reach the Maximum Life Expectancy of Your Furnace

The furnace in a household central HVAC system has an average lifespan of 15 to 20 years. This will vary slightly depending on the type and quality of furnace you have. Here are four suggestions to help you reach the maximum life expectancy of your furnace. The best time to implement these practices is when your furnace is brand new, but it’s never too late to start.

Maintain Proper Airflow

The majority of household furnaces are built to circulate a specific volume of air in order to achieve the temperature set on the thermostat. Blockages and other issues that disrupt the air balance place additional effort on the furnace blower, resulting in higher energy consumption and faster wear and tear. Maintaining sufficient airflow allows for shorter cycle durations, which reduces blower wear. A blocked furnace filter is the most common airflow restriction in an HVAC system. It’s recommended that you change out or clean furnace filters every three months. Also check that your vent registers aren’t closed or blocked by furniture.

Avoid Using the “On” Setting

The fan settings on most thermostats are Auto and On. The blower inside the furnace air handler is directly controlled by this. The blower runs continuously on the On setting, whereas the Auto setting only runs when the furnace or air conditioner is turned on. In almost all circumstances, the Auto setting should be used exclusively.

Leaving your thermostat fan control on will use more energy by constantly running the blower fan. The fan bearings will wear out faster if the fan is used frequently, hence it is only advised for certain reasons. If you have a whole-house air purifier, for example, the On setting will make greater use of it by cycling air through it constantly.

Invest in a Programmable Thermostat

A programmable thermostat, allows you to have the most precise control over your HVAC system. You can save wear on the system by using the programmable settings to only run your furnace when it’s needed. Programmable thermostats can set a plan to run your system at specified times throughout the day, in addition to responding to temperature.

Setting your furnace to turn off in the middle of the night or while you’re out at work is a terrific way to cut down on runtime and extend the life of your furnace. Fortunately, this does not imply that you must forego comfort. You may program your furnace to turn on just before you get up or return home, ensuring that you never have to wait in a cold house for it to kick on.

Schedule a Yearly Tune-Up

During a maintenance visit, an expert will clean your furnace thoroughly, check for good operation of critical safety switches, and inspect internal components for signs of wear. These methods will maintain your furnace and will allow you to detect hidden issues before they become significant and cause damage to your furnace. Schedule Yours Online Today!

Technician performing maintenance for maximum life expectancy of a Bryant furnace.

The amount of effort you put into keeping your furnace in good working order influences how many years of comfort and convenience you will get out of it. Keep these suggestions in mind, and Contact Us for all your heating and cooling needs.

Top 5 Techniques to Get the Most Out of Your ecobee Thermostat

Andrew Gaichuk, ecobee, senior director, technical operations and Cheryl Dias, a veteran of the ecobee customer support team share the Top 5 Techniques to Get the Most Out of Your ecobee Thermostat.


Don’t have a smart home thermostat yet? Take control of your cooling bills with an ecobee smart wi-fi thermostat from BNG.

Advantages of a Smart Wi-Fi Thermostat by ecobee

See our current monthly special.

The following are the top 5 techniques to get the most out of your ecobee thermostat.

1. Virtual assistants allow for hands-free temperature control.

Do you already own a smart home system? Connect your ecobee3, ecobee3 lite, ecobee4, or SmartThermostat with voice control to enjoy hands-free temperature control from anywhere.

“Our thermostats are designed to play nice with leading smart home systems, giving you the flexibility to control your thermostat handsfree, for one seamless experience,” said Andrew Gaichuk, ecobee, senior director, technical operations.

2. A more straightforward method of creating a schedule.

Creating a temperature schedule, especially if you have a routine, can be quite useful.

The most convenient way to program your thermostat settings is through the web portal, which you can access by logging in to your ecobee account at

“The ecobee app is great for a quick glance at your schedule for the day. However, because it gives you a full-screen view of the entire week and puts your schedule and comfort settings on the same screen, we recommend using the web portal to create and edit your schedule,” said Cheryl Dias, a veteran of the ecobee customer support team.

3. Check for accurate temperature readings by troubleshooting.

External influences, the most prevalent of which is referred to as wall draft, can affect your thermostat reading.

Remove the faceplate of your thermostat from the wall to check for wall drafts. Do you notice a huge hole where the wires are emerging? As the cold or warm air reaches the thermostat and alters its reading, your furnace or air conditioner may run longer than necessary.

“To properly insulate the hole, ensuring your thermostat can operate efficiently and effectively, we recommend plugging it up with some plumber’s putty which you can get at a hardware store,” said Gaichuk.

4. Maintain a comfortable temperature in your home.

You might be shocked to learn that the temperature reading on your thermostat differs from the real room temperature after you’ve coupled your SmartSensor to the thermostat and it’s participating in your Comfort Settings. This is very normal. The temperature shown on your thermostat is now the average of the readings from your thermostat’s sensor and the SmartSensor’s sensor.

Multiple sensors in your Comfort Settings help to balance out any hot or cold regions in your home, making it more comfortable for everyone.

If your thermostat is in direct sunlight, you can turn off the temperature sensor and have it read from your SmartSensor, which you can keep in a secure location.

5. To improve comfort, override the set temperature.

The greatest approach to keep your house pleasant while minimizing your energy expenditures is to set a thermostat schedule. However, you can always take command and change the preset schedule to get the exact temperature you desire at any time.

For example, you might want to turn up the heat to keep toasty warm while reading your favorite book or temporarily lower the temperature for a workout.

We recommend having your HVAC system serviced twice a year to prevent any issues down the line.”

– Andrew Gaichuk, senior director, technical operations, ecobee


Visit ecobee for 5 more techniques to get the most out of your ecobee thermostat.

Making Your House a Smart Home

These days, you can access virtually anything from your smart phone. Your home is no exception. While our homes aren’t (yet) the futuristic “smart homes” that movies predicted, we do have some pretty smart capabilities that are making life easier and our monthly bills lower.

Here are our top picks for home connectivity:

Wi-Fi Thermostat

This is possibly the only smart home feature that ends up paying for itself and saves you money as an end result.


Though a little more expensive up front, a smart thermostat learns your home and your family’s habits, and automatically adjusts the temperature of your house according to your usual preferences.

If you lower the temperature every night before bed, it will start doing that for you. If you raise the temperature every day when you get back from work, it will start doing that for you.

And—everyone’s favorite feature—if you’re away on a trip and have your system off of your most comfortable temperature, you can connect to the thermostat from your phone and set it to return to your optimal temperature before you pull in the driveway.

An Inter-Connected Security System

Security systems are no exception to the connectivity era!

Programs like SimpliSafe and Nest allow homeowners to enable and disable their homes both physically and through an app on their phones, and they’re even able to watch suspicious activity from their phones through cameras that are only active when the security system is armed.

Some systems even offer carbon dioxide and smoke detectors, to really complete your home monitoring.

Wi-Fi Outlets

What’s a wi-fi outlet, you ask? It looks like a surge protector, but allows you to control anything that’s plugged into it through an app or through your smart home hub (see next section).

These are useful for making certain things voice-command enabled or for turning things off or on while you’re away from home. Take lamps, for example.

If you have lamps plugged into a wi-fi outlet, you can say “Alexa, turn on my bedroom light,” or even turn on your living room lights from an app when you’re away on vacation.

Smart Home Hub

Many of these products come with their own individual smart phone apps, so you’re able to control each individually.

But it’s wise to make sure that every product you buy has the ability to connect to a smart home hub, such as Amazon Alexa, Google Home, or Samsung’s Connect Home.

Here’s a helpful guide to navigating which is best for you.

When you have one of these hubs, every “smart” product in your home becomes connected, voice-controlled, and accessible from your smart phone.

Seems like an easy choice, right?

If you’re ready to take the first (and easiest) step towards getting a smart home, call your friends at BNG Heating & Cooling. We’ve got the perfect wi-fi thermostat for you!

Is it time to change your thermostat?

You may be thinking, “I haven’t had to worry about my thermostat in 20 years! It’s working just fine!”

While we’re proud that your current system has never given you trouble, we must warn you that thermostat function does deteriorate over time. Even if you’ve never noticed a glitch, older thermostats usually read and display your home temperature inaccurately.

And you’ve probably become accustomed to it!

Accuracy is Important!

If your family knows to translate 78° on your thermostat to really mean 70°, your system is probably not achieving optimal energy efficiency. Since, according to the Energy Information Administration, heating and cooling accounts for 42% of home energy costs, every degree of accuracy could save you money!

Even if you upgrade to a thermostat that has no extra features – without WiFi capabilities or a display screen or even programming options, you’ll still be saving money on your energy because you’ll have a more accurate understanding of the temperature and temperature changes in your home.

Take the Guesswork Out of the Equation

When you switch to a programmable thermostat, you no longer have to remember to set the temperature back when you leave for work or when you go to bed at night. You can program it to change the temperature, gradually, at the times of your day that don’t need extra warmth or cooling.

This is where properly installed insulation comes into play. When your home’s energy-saving infrastructure has been well-maintained, it will be able to keep a comfortable temperature without you constantly switching your heating or cooling on and off.

Improve Your System’s Efficiency Today

Have we inspired you? That’s great news!

Upgrading your thermostat is one of the least expensive ways to keep your energy bills in check, and – even better – BNG HVAC installs your new thermostat for free when you upgrade during your spring maintenance check!

Check out the many thermostat options we provide our customers, then give us a call to schedule your maintenance checkup and thermostat installation!