Thermostats are the lifeline of your home’s heating and cooling system. The right thermostat will allow you to set precise perimeters for your heating and cooling so that you can always have just the right temperature when you’re sitting at your computer or on your couch.
But Alexa, Amazon’s creation can help you make your thermostat even better.
Alexa, part of the Amazon Echo, works with a smart thermostat to change the way that you control your home’s HVAC system.
What is Amazon Echo?
Amazon Echo is a creation by Amazon that helps you automate your home. Cylinder-shaped, this device acts as a piece of decor, but it opens you up to a world of possibilities via the Echo’s WiFi functionality.
And Alexa is always at your command.
Simply say “Alexa what’s the weather outside?” and she’ll respond with the actual weather report.
But she gets even better with new features added all the time. You can even tell her to order pizza for you, and she’ll order Domino’s pizza and have it delivered to your door. Uber can also be sent to your home via Alexa – it’s the wave of the future.
This voice recognition device is so intelligent, and the voice recognition is able to hear commands even when music is playing.
- Give you sports scores
- Tell you the weather
- Answer questions
- Read audiobooks
- Report traffic
- Tell you the news
- Play music via: Prime Music, Pandora, Spotify and other services
But all of these novelties can’t compare to the Echo’s ability to control your lights and thermostat.
Now you can use just your voice to control your thermostat. There is no need to get up while watching the big game to turn down the heat – just let Alexa do it for you.
How Amazon Echo Works With Your Thermostat
When smart thermostats were introduced, no one thought that there would be a third-party device that you could just talk to and have the thermostat adjusted. It’s simply crazy, and it’s all brought to you by the world’s largest online retailer – Amazon.
Just think, you’re sitting there, watching the big game, and it’s just too hot. You’re sweating, and maybe it’s because you’re on the 4th down with 12 yards to go and the pressure is just too much.
But getting up out of your seat to adjust the thermostat is a big no-no.
You have your rituals, and who am I to judge you? Well, now all you need to do is say: “Alexa, set room to 68 degrees” and the rest is history.
Or, you can say:
- Alexa, increase the thermostat.
- Alexa, decrease the thermostat by 2 degrees.
And just like a genie, all of your wishes will come true. It’s out of this world, and Amazon does a good job explaining how it all works here.
Some models will work only with a hub, and this means that you’ll need some sort of new device to be able to tie all of the technology together to make them work properly. It’s not much of an issue, but it’s something to think about.
But there are some devices that work flawlessly with Alexa right out of the box: Honeywell WiFi Smart and Sensi WiFi.
There are also a few others, too, including:
- Venstar Colortech
Amazon has a complete list of devices that will work alongside Alexa.
Something like the White Rodgers Thermostat (not the Sensi) probably won’t work without a hub, so make sure that you know if your desired or current thermostat offers Echo functionality before making a decision.
A Brief Look at the Honeywell WiFi Thermostat
We’ve reviewed the WiFi in-depth before, and this is one of the best models on the market today. What makes this thermostat so impressive is that the energy savings and smart features get better over time.
You may be changing your temperature at 6pm every night, and while you do this, the thermostat will keep note of these changes and begin to lower the temperature for you automatically.
Peak energy savings is provided by accessing your utility usage.
An accompanying app further lets you take control of your heating and cooling – something older models could never offer. You’re able to change the temperature via your app when you’re not at home, or if you’re sitting in another room.
But if you have Alexa, you can just use your voice.
And with this thermostat being so affordable, it’s a smart choice for consumers who want to be able to enjoy the energy savings of a smart thermostat without the high price tag.
A Brief Look at the Sensi Thermostat
The Sensi is another top-of-the-line thermostat (read out full review), and the true power of this unit is seen through the thermostat’s app. The app allows users to create temperature schedules, make adjustments and even look at the weather through the app.
You can work through nine built-in schedules or create different schedules for weekdays, weekends or any combination of days.
Easy to install, this is a model that can be installed in just a short 20 minutes in most cases, and you don’t need to be some sort of handyman to be able to do the install yourself.
Accuracy is where the Sensi is at the top of the industry.
If you have a thermostat, you know that they’re very fickle. Moving the temperature down one degree can mean that your room is freezing cold. This happens because the thermostat is not properly able to control the temperature.
But the Sensi is +/= 1 degree in accuracy.
This is as good as it gets, folks. You’ll be able to keep the temperature precise at all times of the day or year, and since Alexa works with this model, you’ll also be able to use your voice to control your home’s temperature.
It’s one of the most advanced and intuitive ways to control your thermostat – hands-free.