The smart heating sector is very competitive, and getting more so day by day as new products pop up on the market. Smart thermostats are seen as the future of home heating. Take Honeywell’s offering for example; Evohome is a comprehensive smart heating solution, or rather smart heating with a traditional approach, which the manufacturer claims can reduce energy bills by up to 40% a year.
According to Honeywell, a company founded way back in 1906, the best energy savings can be achieved by efficiently managing the temperature of individual zones, or rather rooms. Having modular control over the temperature of individual zones is what sets Evohome apart from other smart heating systems like the popular Nest and Tado. Honeywell claims that Evohome is the most advanced, most comprehensive solution to smarter home heating currently available on the market. And it’s easy to see why.
What is it?
More advanced than smart thermostats like Nest and Tado, albeit without their smart learning technology, Evohome provides complete control of your heating system, hour-by-hour, day-by-day, room-by-room. Evohome gives the end user the potential to save the most money on their heating bills long term. Each individual zone is manually controlled via a dedicated touchscreen panel, or alternatively with your smartphone and smartphone app, which wirelessly connects to your home’s broadband router. The boiler and radiators are controlled through a smartphone app or central console. But it doesn’t offer the same level of remote access compared to Hive or Nest.
Comprising of a smart thermostat control unit, TRVs (thermostatic radiator valves) and a Remote Access Gateway – which connects to your router and communicates wirelessly with the controller – the Evohome starter pack will set you back £218.95, and includes a single radiator zone kit. Extra sensors for additional zones/rooms will cost around £50-60 each. So the more zones you want to control the more costly it becomes. Then there’s the optional hot water controller, which costs around £70. You’ll also need to factor in installation costs too, which can typically set you back around £100.
Evohome is a considerably more comprehensive and expensive bit of kit in comparison to similar smart thermostat technology. It needs to be programmed manually and can be rather difficult to set up, so you’re probably better off paying for a professional heating engineer to carry out the installation. Which of course adds to the cost. But you’re still getting a lot more bang for your buck.
How does it work?
Unlike smart thermostats like Tado and Nest, Evohome doesn’t embrace the sensor system; they prefer a more tried and tested traditional approach which involves maintaining a constant set temperature. According to Honeywell it’s a less efficient, and therefore more expensive way to heat your home if you’re continually dropping the temperature and reheating a room.
Although Evohome doesn’t have the ability to learn your energy habits (think Nest and Tado), what you get is actually a far more comprehensive and advanced system. Zone heating offers maximum level of control and efficiency; the Honeywell Evohome gives you exactly that.
The sensors, or TRVs, replace the existing temperature control on your radiators. They display the temperature and battery life, which is a rather handy feature. Each radiator individually communicates with the central control unit, enabling you to have different temperatures in different rooms. If you want to you can also manually adjust the temperature of the radiator to which they are connected. Obviously if your central heating is of a certain age, and doesn’t have temperature controlling valves already installed, you’ll need to upgrade if you want to install the Honeywell Evohome. So that could be an extra cost you might not be anticipating.
Benefits of Honeywell Evohome
- Cut heating bills by up to 40% annually
- Complete control over your heating and hot water
- Has the potential to save maximum amount of cash if used correctly
- Manually control individual zones/rooms
- You can have different temperatures in different rooms
- Zone heating is the most efficient method according to experts Honeywell
- Evohome should pay for itself in 2.5 years, says Honeywell
Honeywell will be launching their next-gen smart thermostat, Lyric, in the latter half of 2015.