Best Smart Thermostat Reviews 2018

Today’s modern thermostats can do so much more than control the temperature in your home. While “smart thermostats” are relatively new, if you are building a home, replacing a malfunctioning thermostat, or simply considering an upgrade, they offer some really attractive features worth considering. Here are five of the top models we recommend taking a look at.
Overview
PROS
CONS
SPECS
Connectivity
Display
Compatibility
Mobile Access
Size
Our Top Choice
Nest Learning Thermostat - 3rd Generation
Nest is a leader in the smart home technology market. They manufacture thermostats, cameras, doorbells and smoke & CO alarms.
Easy to view display w/ touch screen functionality Energy saving settings.
Doesn’t run on batteries – needs separate power source/hardwired. No remote temperature sensor to monitor rooms individually.
Wi-Fi with remote access
24-bit color LCD display
Amazon Alexa
Yes, with the Nest app
1.2 x 3.3 x 3.3-inches
Best Value
Emerson Sensi Wi-Fi Thermostat
Emerson is a brand focused on manufacturing high-quality Automation Solutions and Commercial and Residential Solutions including smart home thermostats.
Easy to install. Control with the mobile app. Color-changing feature indicated heating or cooling. Smart alerts. Geofencing option. Dual fuel heat pump. Set temp 45-99˚F.
Some issues with the instruction manual not including everything necessary for setup.
Wi-Fi with remote access
Clear display with large numerals
Alexa, Apple HomeKit, Wink
Yes with free Sensi app
5.58 x 3.75 x 1-inches
ecobee4 Alexa-Enabled Thermostat
Founded in 2007, ecobee was born due to a family man’s frustration with their carbon footprint. His mission was to create a functional, useful and easy-to-use smart thermostat.
Save up to 23% on energy bills. Multi-functional; order groceries, read news etc. High-quality microphones and speakers. ENERGY STAR certified. Auto home/away settings.
Some prefer Alexa on the Echo Dot, not the ecobee thermostat itself.
Wi-Fi with remote access
3.5” touchscreen display
Alexa, Apple HomeKit and more
Yes with ecobee app
1 x 4 x 4-inches
Honeywell Wi-Fi Smart Color Thermostat
Honeywell is a well-known home products brand, perhaps due to the fact they’ve been around for over 130 years, since 1885!
Large, easy-to-read display. View inside temp and humidity as well as local weather. ENERGY STAR certified. Flexible programming options. Smart alerts and reminders.
Some feel the touchscreen is not that sensitive, although it does the job.
Wi-Fi with remote access
Large customizable touchscreen
Amazon Alexa
Yes with free app
4.5 x 0.8 x 3.5-inches
GoControl Z-Wave Smart Thermostat
GoControl is a well-known brand in the smart home products industry. They manufacture product solutions relating to climate, lighting, security, sensors and access.
Takes 4 x AA batteries. Battery life lasts up to 2 years. Connects through Z-wave to smartphone. Works with standard HVAC and heat pump HVAC systems.
Some suggest batteries don’t last as long when connect to Z-wave.
Connects to Z-wave
Small display, large numerals
Works with Alexa
Yes through Z-wave
6.16 x 9.59 x 2.08-inches

(Updated )

How Do I Choose the Best Smart Thermostat?

Before we start talking about the important things to look for in a smart thermostat, it’s probably important to make sure we are all on the same page. Just what exactly is a “smart thermostat” and is it the same thing as a “programmable thermostat?” Let’s start with the second question first – while all smart thermostats are programmable, not all programmable thermostats are smart. So maybe we should be asking this question – what’s the difference between a “dumb thermostat” and a smart one?

A basic thermostat will allow you to program the temperature settings for you home, minimally by time of day, but often by the day of the week as well but you need to be standing right at the device to make any changes. In contrast, a smart thermostat uses technology that let’s you monitor and make adjustments from other places. Some connect with other “smart technology” in your home to allow you to control it by voice in another room but that’s not all that they can do.

If you purchase a thermostat that is wi-fi compatible, they have applications that let you control your home environment when you are way from your pc or any mobile device – giving you even more flexibility and energy savings. Let’s say it’s the middle of winter and you normally get home at 6 pm. With a traditional programmable thermostat, you can set the temperature to go down when no one is home and have it turn on at 5:30 so it’s nice and warm when you get there. But what happens if a friend asks you to go out dinner and you don’t get home until 9? That’s 4 hours that your heating system is working at a higher temperature with an empty home.

As you can see, although they are more expensive, they can potentially bring you a lot back in energy savings. By the way, if you want to do a comparison, take a look at our review of the top 5 digital thermostats.
Price
When looking at the price of a smart thermostat (or any thermostat for that matter) there are three factors to consider – the actual cost of the device, the cost to install (especially if you can’t do it yourself) and the effect that the specific model will have on your energy bills over time. If you get a more expensive model that has options to automatically control the temperature settings, it will mean more money up front but a good one will pay for itself in terms of how much it saves every year on electricity or gas costs.

The average price range for a good Wi-Fi compatible smart thermostat is from about $175 to $300 dollars. It is important to note that some of the less expensive thermostats frequently have less features and lower quality materials and construction.
Features
In addition to all the features associated with controlling your temperature from the actual thermostat (which we will discus below), many smart thermostats are Wi-Fi compatible. This means that they have an app that can be used on your mobile phone, tablet or PC that lets you monitor and adjust the temperature settings in your house – from any room or any place around the world (as long as you have internet). But just like with any app – not all smart thermostats are created equal. Some to much more that let you control the temperature. For example, some will give you alerts when it notices that your HVAC system isn’t working properly.

Another feature that the more advanced smart thermostats offer is the ability to connect with other devices to give you a connected “smart home.” For example, there are many that connect with home control systems that are voice activated. Others will connect to smoke and carbon monoxide detectors – sending you alerts on your mobile device if there is a problem. Taking it even one step further, there are models that can be connected to home security systems and will “tell” it to turn on and off according to your home and away settings on the thermostat. For example, if you have the thermostat to turn down when you leave for work, it will let the camera know it’s time to go to work too.
Construction and Design
Not all thermostats are capable of monitoring both heating and cooling, but in the case of smart thermostats most do offer the ability to control both. However, you need to make sure that it works with the way that you heat and cool your home. Again, because of the advanced technology most work with a multiple HVAC systems including gas, electric and forced air. You will also need to make sure that the power supply is compatible – determine whether your system works on a low voltage or high voltage power source and make sure to get a thermostat that works with it.

Once you know that you have the right kind of thermostat, take a look at the actual construction and materials. Higher quality thermostats tend to cost more but that’s because they are more durable and are built to last.

Finally, when you go out shopping for a basic thermostat look is important, but the reality is you are pretty much getting a rectangular box that is stuck to the wall (or sometimes a round one). With smart thermostats there are so many more options. Many come with high resolution digital screens and there’s one on our short list that even let’s you customize the background display.
Performance and Ease of Use
For the purpose of this review, we are going to break performance and ease of use for smart home thermostats into three categories – installation, how well it really controls your temperature and how easy it is to use all the controls. We will put the information about the apps that work with the thermostat in the feature section.
  • Installation – If you are getting a basic thermostat, installation is usually pretty simple, especially if you are replacing another one. One factor that will GREATLY impact the installation of your new thermostat is the power source – does it need to be hardwired or can it operate by batteries? Even if it does need to connect to your electrical system, in many cases it’s something that most home owners can do – shut off the main power supply, connect the wiring appropriately according to the instructions and then install the included mounting system. Even if you need to hire a professional, it won’t cost a lot of money. In the case of smart thermostats, some do have easy installation but some with more advanced features may require professional help.
  • Temperature Control/Programmability – A good thermostat will accurately monitor the temperature in the room and adjust how hard (or little) your heating and cooling unit is working accordingly. By the way, when installing your thermostat, the location is important – if you aren’t sure where the best place is, consult a professional. All of the smart thermostats that we are recommending are programmable – but there are two kinds. User-programmable thermostats let you set temperature by time, and sometimes by day of the week. For example, can have different settings for week days when you go to work and weekends when you are home during the day. Self-programmable thermostats will gather information from sensors and will adjust the temperatures accordingly – they can even tell the season because 65 degrees in your house at winter time certainly “feels” different from 65 in the summer! Some can even monitor humidity.
  • User Interface – The easier it is for you to understand how all the options available on your device the better. Programming your settings shouldn’t be complicated. Many of today’s smart thermostats offer touch screen controls, that work just like your tablet or mobile device. Even if they aren’t touch controls, many offer easy to read attractive visual displays – some even tell you the temperature outside.

What is the Best Smart Thermostat?

Now that we understand exactly what a smart thermostat is and what to look for, let’s turn out attention 5 of the best smart home thermostats that are available on the market today. We have only chosen to only review models that are wi-fi compatible, because what’s the sense of getting a smart thermostat if it doesn’t do more than your old “dumb” one?
Our Top Choice
Currently the # 1 best seller on Amazon, the Learning Thermostat by Nest has been proven to help people save money on their energy bills. If you are looking to save some on purchase cost too, you could opt for the 2nd Generation Nest Thermostat instead.
Nest 3rd Generation Learning Thermostat – Programmable, WiFi App & Works with Amazon Alexa

Nest Learning Thermostat 3rd Gen - T3007ES


Features
Nest is a leading manufacturer of smart home products that work efficiently and seamlessly together to make your home life even more enjoyable. Their products focus on your comfort and security. Within their product line are security cameras, nanny cams, thermostats, doorbells and smoke & CO alarms.

The Next Thermostat works with other products like the Nest Protect smoke and Co2 detector and Next Cam so you always know your house is safe, whether you are home or away. The 3rd Generation version has been a best seller on Amazon for great reasons. Check out some of its features and who knows, maybe this smart thermostat is exactly what you need for your home:
  • Auto-programs based on your previous temperature settings
  • Has energy saving indicator
  • Easy to install and set up
  • Temperature can be controlled using your smart devices
  • Auto-away feature adjusts temperature when you leave home
There are many construction and design features that make the Learning Thermostat by Nest one of the best-selling smart thermostats available on the market today. The 3rd generation model brings with it a larger 24-bid color LCD screen with 480x480 resolution. This enhanced resolution provides better visibility compared to the 2nd generation Nest, making it easily seen from across the room.

When totally assembled, the total weight of the Nest thermostat is 243.7g, with a diameter of 3.3in and a height of almost 1.21in. When compared with its 2nd Gen counterpart, the new Nest is bigger in overall size but slimmer where it counts. You have a choice of four languages for the user interface – English, Spanish, French and Dutch.

The Nest Learning Thermostat T3007ES comes with a rechargeable lithium ion battery. You can optimize the performance of the Nest Thermostat using its energy saving features. The display will even show a green leaf to let you know when you are choosing a temperature that minimizes energy usage. When you use the Auto Away feature, the system will adjust the temperature accordingly when no one is home – down when using the heat, and up when using the air conditioning. The smart features give you the ability to remotely make changes to the settings even if you are not at the actual thermostat – whether you are in another room, or miles and miles away – with your smartphone, mobile device or PC.
Best Value
The Emerson Sensi Wi-Fi Thermostat is an easy-to-install device that can be controlled by you anywhere and anytime thanks to the convenient mobile app. It works with Amazon Echo, Apple HomeKit and Wink. If you would prefer a smart thermostat with a touchscreen, you should consider the Emerson Sensi Touch Thermostat which also works with Amazon Alexa!
Emerson Sensi Wi-Fi Thermostat for Smart Home, Available as 6-Pack & in 2 Styles

Emerson Smart Thermostat ST55 – DIY with Homekit


Features
Emerson has just undergone a bold transformation, creating better value for their customers and shareholders. They’re focused on two main platforms, Commercial & Residential Solutions and Automation Solutions. Their line of high-quality products includes gas analysis, pressure, flow measurement, tank gauging and safety measurement products in the Automation category as well as heating & air conditioning, thermostats, refrigeration and ceiling fans and lighting in the Commercial & Residential Solutions department.

The Emerson Sensi Wi-Fi Thermostat has been highly rated thanks to its simple installation and bunch of useful features. With the Sensi thermostat you’ll have complete control over the comfort of your home, anytime, anywhere.

Let’s take a look at the features that make this possible:
  • Operates like a regular thermostat when not connected to Wi-Fi
  • Color-changing feature shows if the system is cooling or heating your home
  • Compatible with Amazon Echo, Apple HomeKit and Wink
  • Smart alerts and geofencing option
  • Dual fuel heat pump option built-in
  • Control from anywhere with the use of the mobile app
  • Set your thermostat from 45˚ to 99˚F
  • Measures 5.58 x 3.75 x 1-inches
You can purchase the DIY with Homekit or Pro with Homekit version of this thermostat and the DIY version comes individually or in a 6-pack depending on whether you need it for personal or commercial use!
The ecobee4 Alexa-Enabled Thermostat uses room sensors to ensure your most loved rooms are kept at an optimum comfort level. Using this thermostat could save you up to 23% in heating and cooling bills. If you would rather get the older model ecobee thermostat, which has hundreds of positive reviews, then check out the ecobee3 Thermostat with Sensor.
ecobee Alexa-Enabled Thermostat with Sensor, Available with Echo Dot

ecobee Smart Thermostat EB-STATE4-01


Features
Ecobee was founded in 2007 by a frustrated family-man who was desperately trying to reduce his home’s carbon footprint in an effective, easy way. It proved impossible with the thermostats available at the time and so, ecobee was born. Ecobee manufactures functional smart home thermostats for personal and commercial use.

The ecobee4 Alexa-Enabled Thermostat goes above and beyond to ensure you’re living in a comfortable environment that’s also eco-friendly and has as low energy consumption as possible. With special room sensors, this device even deals with hot and cold spots in rooms.

Here’s some more cool features:
  • Compatible with Amazon Alexa
  • Multi-functional; can read out the news, order groceries and more
  • Built-in microphones have far-field voice recognition
  • Speaker is engineered for clear and crisp sound
  • Control all the thermostat settings from the ecobee mobile app
  • Auto home/away settings detects when you’re away and adjusts settings accordingly
  • Save up to 23% in cooling and heating costs per year
  • ENERGY STAR certified
This super convenient smart thermostat is ideal for anyone looking to reduce their carbon footprint at home and save a few bucks doing it. You can also purchase this as a bundle with the Echo Dot.
The Honeywell Wi-Fi Smart Color Thermostat has a large, customizable touchscreen display that shows both the inside and outside temperatures. If you don’t enjoy using a touchscreen display, you can always opt for the Honeywell Wi-Fi 7-Day Programmable Thermostat instead which has easy-to-use buttons instead!
Honeywell Wi-Fi Smart Color Programmable Thermostat

Honeywell Smart Thermostat RTH9580WF


Features
Honeywell has a deep history dating back to 1885, over 130 years ago, and encompassing many predecessor companies. They’re core values have remained intact though, to innovate and strive for a cleaner, more efficient and stable future. Their product line includes thermostats, humidifiers, air cleaners, wireless doorbells, light timers and more!

The Honeywell Wi-Fi Smart Color Thermostat would make a fantastic and functional addition to any home. The large touchscreen display features easy-to-read numbers and customizable background colors too.

There’s more to this thermostat:
  • Works seamlessly with Amazon Alexa (sold separately)
  • View the inside temperature and humidity as well as local weather
  • Flexible programming options based on your schedule
  • Filter change reminders, high/low temp warnings and humidifier replacement reminder alerts
  • ENERGY STAR certified
  • Simple set up and installation
  • Connects to Wi-Fi or control through the smartphone app
The GoControl Z-Wave Smart Thermostat is an easy-to-use device that can be powered on batteries or connected using a “C” wire. If you want to deck out your house with full automation products, you need to take a look at the GoControl QuickStick Z-Wave Complete Automation Starter Kit.
GoControl Z-Wave Battery-Powered Thermostat, Works with Amazon Alexa

GoControl Smart Thermostat GC-TBZ48


Features
GoControl is a well-respected brand, manufacturing premium smart solutions for the home including solutions for climate, lighting, security, sensors and access. They have a range of high-quality smart plugs, light switches and thermostats that make your home a more convenient and comfortable place to live.

The GoControl Z-Wave Smart Thermostat is a battery-powered thermostat. Simply pop 4 x AA batteries in the front-loading compartment and your thermostat can last up to 2 years. Alternatively, you can power it using the HVAC systems 24 VAC “C” wire.

Here’s more to enjoy:
  • Connects to all Z-wave hubs including the 2GIG GC2 panel
  • Supports Z-wave FLiRS functionality
  • Works with standard HVAC: 2 stage cool/2 stage heat
  • Works with heat pump HVAC: 2 stage cool/3 stage heat
  • Easy to install and set-up
  • Control using your smartphone once set up with Z-wave

Get the Best Smart Thermostat of 2018!

If you are ready to take a step into the future by making your house or apartment a smart home, these are 5 smart thermostats that we can highly recommend.

Our Top Choice
Nest Learning Thermostat - 3rd Generation
Best Value
Emerson Sensi Wi-Fi Thermostat
ecobee4 Alexa-Enabled Thermostat
Honeywell Wi-Fi Smart Color Thermostat
GoControl Z-Wave Smart Thermostat