This piece was originally published in the January 2018 issue of electroindustry.
Sergio Marques, Product Manager, Controls and Cables Division, Stelpro
Photo courtesy of Stelpro Electrical Heating
Electric heating is an efficient way to heat a home because every watt consumed is transformed into heat. Electrical zone heating allows occupants to be more comfortable and save energy because each room is heated only to its specific needs.
Electronic line voltage thermostats provide comfort and energy savings by providing more precise readings and less temperature variation. A smart line voltage thermostat allows the user to save up to 25 to 30 percent compared with a mechanical thermostat and save 12 to 16 percent compared with an electronic thermostat.1
The savings of using a smart line voltage thermostat come from:
- geofencing, which enables automatically lowering the setpoint when no one is home;
- creating activities based on a user’s busy schedule, not the typical four activities per day repeated every day;
- grouping some rooms that have the same behaviors (bedrooms, basement, bathrooms, kitchen) to optimize the benefits of zoned heating;
- sending alerts if something is unusual (such as an open window alert); and
- consumption reports that make users more aware of their energy footprint.
A smart thermostat also changes users’ behaviors, making them more aware of what is going on and providing them with the power to act.
1 Stelpro worked with École Polytechnique de Montréal (the University of Montreal’s Engineering School) on a study to compare the energy consumption between line voltage mechanical thermostats, electronic nonprogrammable thermostats, and a smart thermostat. The tests were for a typical Montreal winter, heating from October 15 to April 30. The study used the reference twin houses of the Canadian Centre for Housing Technology located in Ottawa; the houses feature more than 250 sensors and 23 energy meters.