There is nothing more annoying in winter than coming home to a cold house after a tiring day. Manufacturers of smart thermostats promise that you will always come home warm, while avoiding unnecessary heating. We have tested nine smart thermostats that you can control from anywhere thanks to an app.
What actually makes a smart thermostat smart? In practice, the smart part is mainly in a connection to the internet. This allows you to operate the thermostat from anywhere in the world with your smartphone or PC and of course you can also take your smartphone at home for operation. Just like a clock thermostat, you can program all smart thermostats to automatically turn the heating up and down at times of your choosing. A big advantage of a smart thermostat is that programming the clock program via an app or website is a lot easier than on the traditional clock thermostat, which works with difficult buttons and screens that are too small. Finally, some smart thermostats support geofencing, which determines whether you are at home based on the location of your smartphone.
The smart thing can also be in the link with other products. We indicate in the table whether a link with IFTTT and Domoticz is possible. The link with your own home automation systems such as Domoticz is usually made by users and is often not official. So use this information as an indication and read carefully before purchasing if you plan to use it, guarantees of proper functioning are in any case difficult to give.
Manufacturers like to screen with the energy savings that a smart thermostat brings you. Do not blindly assume, for example, a percentage, because it depends on your current behavior whether you are really going to save. If you currently only turn on the heating when you are at home and turn it down neatly when you go to sleep or leave home, you will not save energy. Many people have an intricately programmable clock thermostat that runs through a program once set. That program may no longer match the current lifestyle. Or worse: no program has been set and the thermostat is always set to a comfortable 21 degrees. A smart thermostat is easy to program and you can always lower the heating via your smartphone when you are not at home. A smart thermostat can also offer you optimal comfort in combination with the lowest possible energy consumption, because if you know that you are going home, you can already switch on the heating.
The superlative in terms of comfort is zone control, which allows you to control temperature per room in combination with smart thermostats. You can also heat one room, while the rest of your house stays colder – saving energy. The individual buttons cost about 70 to 80 euros. We indicate in this article whether a thermostat can be expanded with zone heating, but we assess all thermostats for this article as a central room thermostat.
There are several ways in which a thermostat can be connected to your heating system. The simplest method is a so-called on/off control, in which the thermostat short-circuits two contacts, after which the central heating boiler switches on. Modern central heating boilers use a modulating control, which works with different water temperatures. As a result, it is potentially more pleasant to heat with a constant temperature and, thanks to modulation, gas can be saved. For optimal operation, a modulating thermostat is also required that can request different water temperatures. Usually the OpenTherm protocol is used for this. Some boiler manufacturers such as Nefit use their own modulating protocol that is not compatible with OpenTherm. These manufacturers then offer their own modulating (smart) thermostats.
If you have district or block heating in combination with a central thermostat, you can usually replace it with a smart thermostat that uses the on/off control. If you use underfloor heating, check carefully whether a smart thermostat really offers a lot of added value. Underfloor heating comes up to temperature more slowly and usually has a lower night reduction than with radiators. Remote control is of course useful, but something like geofencing may be less useful. So be well informed about this.
Just like a traditional thermostat, you connect some thermostats directly to the central heating boiler with a two-wire wire. In most cases, installation is a bit more difficult because many smart thermostats work with an extra boiler module. This boiler module is placed between the central heating boiler and the thermostat. In addition to communication between the thermostat and the central heating boiler, a boiler module also provides the thermostat with energy. For the installation of the boiler module, you can cut the existing wire that runs from your central heating boiler to the wall thermostat. It might be wiser to buy an extra suitable piece of cable and connect it between the central heating boiler and the boiler module.
Itho Daalderop, Tado, Netatmo and Honeywell (EvoHome) among others support zoning. In principle, each radiator gets its own smart thermostat knob, so you can set the temperature in that room. You might think: I already have thermostat knobs with which I can set the temperature. Such knobs usually have positions expressed in numbers, where 3 usually corresponds to 21 degrees. In a traditional heating system with a central living room (thermostat), the temperature of one room is monitored. If the temperature in that room threatens to fall below the set limit, a heat demand follows and hot water flows into the radiators. Of course, that warm water not only flows to the radiator in the room with the thermostat, but also to radiators in other rooms. To prevent it from getting too hot in other (smaller) rooms, you can use a thermostat knob to limit the temperature. With such a knob, you just do not have the certainty that the room will remain at the right temperature with such a thermostat knob. If there is no heat demand in your heating system, hot water will not flow through your system and a radiator simply cannot heat up.
Smart thermostat knobs can make a heat demand for the central heating system themselves, so that hot water is guaranteed to flow into the relevant radiator. Because in principle every radiator is equipped with such a button, you can heat your house per room.
The Anna is known from the Nederlandse Energie Maatschappij where you can rent it, but it can also be purchased separately at no additional cost. You connect the Anna via a boiler module, which also provides the connection to your wireless network. You don't have to create an account for Anna, you connect in the app with a code that you can find on the boiler module. The round thermostat is made of white plastic with a metal ring around it, the screen switches on when you stand in front of the thermostat. The ring is divided into three parts that act as touch-sensitive buttons to change the temperature and switch between the various presence modes.
The Anna has a web interface that runs locally on the boiler adapter. You can only reach it in your local network via the IP address or here. The app is clear, but sometimes takes a long time to load. You can set the clock program via the app as well as via the web interface. Anna learns from your use, but does not make changes to the clock program on her own. Changes are suggested, after which you have to approve them yourself. Via the app and physical thermostat you can switch between statuses such as home, night, away, vacation and frost protection. The clock program has priority and is followed. You can switch off the clock program via the app or physical thermostat if desired. Thanks to geofencing, Anna can automatically switch between the statuses at home and away. For lovers of statistics, the Anna stands out for its extensive information. For example, when you use OpenTherm, you can also view the requested water temperature and the used water temperature via the web interface in addition to the temperature trend.
www.getqupit.com 8 Score 80
- Extensive charts
- Local web interface
- No IFTTT
- App sometimes slow
Netatmo's thermostat is made of a block of Plexiglas. The transparent edge can be provided with a color accent of your choice thanks to the supplied stickers. The screen uses e-ink and always shows you the current and set temperature. You can choose whether you want to use the thermostat horizontally or vertically. Connecting is easy, because the thermostat is connected directly to the boiler with the wire. The Netatmo does not support OpenTherm control, but is only suitable for on/off control. The internet gateway connects wirelessly to the thermostat and your WiFi network. You can also use the Netatmo thermostat wirelessly. You then connect the internet gateway to your central heating boiler as a boiler module. In all cases, three AAA batteries are placed in the thermostat for power.
You can of course adjust the current temperature via the app or website. There is also an Absence mode, with which you can switch off the clock program until a self-set time or indefinitely. To set the clock program you can use a wizard that sets the clock program on the basis of a number of questions about your lifestyle. By default, the schedule works on the basis of four temperature settings, to which you can add settings if four choices are not enough. You put them as blocks in the schedule. The web interface makes setting up a bit more convenient because you can drag and drop the start and end times of a block. The Netatmo supports IFTTT and Apple's HomeKit, so you can control the temperature via Siri. The software is very nice. If you don't need OpenTherm, you can safely add half a star to our opinion.
www.netatmo.com 7 Score 70
- Both wired and wireless
- IFTTT and HomeKit
- Convenient programming
- Zone control possible
- No OpenTherm support
Nest Learning Thermostat V3
The Nest Learning Thermostat V3 had problems with the OpenTherm implementation when it was introduced in 2015, but now everything works as expected. The Nest uses a boiler module that controls the boiler and provides power to the thermostat. The beautifully designed Nest thermostat is available in silver, black, white and copper and stands out for its handy operation: turning the ring to the left or right immediately changes the temperature. The screen turns on when motion is detected. In addition to the temperature, you can also choose to show a clock or weather forecast when there is movement. You call up the menu by pressing the thermostat.
You can set the clock program via the thermostat, app or web interface. Distinctive is that the Nest programs itself based on your manual adjustments and presence. In practice this is not always convenient. Fortunately, you can switch off the automatic programming and set the clock program yourself. Nest uses a sensor and geofencing to determine if someone is home. You can disable both forms of presence detection. When you are at home, Nest follows the clock program, otherwise the temperature is lowered. The app and web interface look nice and are well put together with one exception. You can manually indicate on the main screen of the Nest app that you are not at home, after which lower eco temperature becomes active. The clock program is then still followed. You can also manually choose the eco temperature via the physical thermostat or deeper in the app, in this way the clock program is no longer followed. Confusingly, you can't tell the difference between both forms of eco-temperature.
Nest Learning Thermostat V3Price
www.nest.com 8 Score 80
- Confusion eco temperature
Honeywell Lyric T6
The Honeywell Lyric T6 is available in a wired and wireless variant, we have tested the wired version. For connection, the T6 works with a boiler module. The appearance of the Lyric T6 is not very exciting. The square box is dark gray on the side and black on the front. The temperature is shown by default, the other controls appear after touching. During setup, the Lyric T6 offers a Wi-Fi network. By connecting to this, you can set up the device via the app.
You can 'program' the Lyric in two ways. Via a traditional clock program or via geofencing where the location of your smartphone determines the temperature. Programming works on the basis of blocks in which you can set the temperature. In addition to the app, you can also program the program somewhat laboriously via the wall thermostat itself. There is no web interface. If you opt for geofencing, a simpler clock program is activated, consisting of a night reduction for when you sleep and temperatures for home and not at home. An extra handy feature is the holiday setting, which allows you to set the thermostat at a certain temperature for a period of time. This option will especially come in handy when you use the clock program, but it may also be a reassuring thought for geofencers that the heating is fixed at one temperature. The Lyric T6 is compatible with IFTTT and Apple's HomeKit, allowing you to control the temperature via Siri.
Honeywell Lyric T6Price
www.kijkveelbeleef.nl 8 Score 80
- nice app
- No web interface
tado° smart thermostat
Tado has a wizard for the installation that guides you step by step. You connect the thermostat directly to your central heating boiler, where three AAA batteries provide the thermostat with energy. You connect a compact bridge to your router that you connect to the thermostat during the installation procedure. Normally no information is shown on the Tado. By pressing a button the screen becomes active and you can manually change the temperature or the temperature of the tap water. This is somewhat confusing, the control buttons do not appear immediately. Tado was designed with the idea that you never have to set the temperature yourself. When you are at home, it is automatically warm and when you are away, the temperature is lowered and the clock program is paused. To make this possible, Tado relies on a well-developed geofencing.
Incidentally, Tado itself chooses a variable absence temperature, but you can set a self-selected minimum. As soon as you go home, the temperature will be raised again and the clock program will become active. You can indicate how comfortably this should be done – preheating while you go home. When you are at home, the clock program is followed. Programming the clock program works on the basis of blocks, where you set a temperature plus the start and end time. Programming is easier via the web interface than in the app, because you can drag the start and end times. It is useful that you can indicate in a switch block that the geofencing for that switch block should be ignored. You can also disable the geofencing completely, but it is the well-developed geofencing that gives the Tado its added value. In addition to the current V3, V2 without HomeKit is also available for a lower price.
tado° smart thermostatPrice
www.tado.com 9 Score 90
- Well-developed geofencing
- Combination clock program/geofencing
- Zone control possible
- IFTTT and HomeKit
- Control physical thermostat
Itho Daalderop SpIDer Connect
Installing the Spider thermostat is easy, only a wire is required from the thermostat to the boiler. You connect the gateway to your router and if present smart meter. Connecting the thermostat is done via the website, but read the manual carefully about what exactly needs to be done. The Spider has a square white housing with a black front. To light up the screen, press the Itho Daalderop logo. You can make manual changes and switch off the clock program via the wall thermostat.
You can set the clock program via the website and work on the basis of five different temperatures that you drag to the program as switching moments. The Spider does not support self-learning heating and always starts heating up at the set switching moment. If you want a warm house at seven in the morning, then you have to set the clock program yourself to, for example, half past six. You cannot program the clock program via the app. You can, however, switch off the clock program or adjust the current day once. With My Itho Daalderop, Itho Daalderop does offer a second app with which you open the web interface and thus have access to the clock program.
If the Spider is connected to your smart meter, you can also see the energy and gas consumption in graphs in addition to the temperature trend. Unfortunately, the live energy consumption is not shown and you can only view the consumption of the previous days. Spider Connect is suitable for zone control. A set of the Spider with four additional buttons costs 486 euros at the time of writing. In addition, you can connect and program smart plugs and Spider, in combination with a suitable ventilation system from Itho Daalderop, also functions as a programmable controller. Itho Daalderop will soon expand Spider with security accessories such as a smoke detector, CO detector, motion detector and door/window contacts.
Itho Daalderop SpIDer ConnectPrice
www.ithodaalderop.nl 7 Score 70
- Smart meter link
- Insight into energy consumption
- Zone control possible
- No self-learning heating
- No IFTTT
Nefit ModuLine Easy
The Nefit Easy is an elongated thermostat whose front consists of a glass plate. If you stand in front of the Easy, the round touch screen lights up and you can manually set the temperature and switch the clock program on or off. The Nefit Easy normally 'speaks' Nefit's own modulating protocol. An optional EasyControl adapter (approximately 35 euros) makes the Easy suitable for on/off and OpenTherm control. The Easy is therefore a lot more attractively priced for Nefit owners. Just like a boiler module, you connect the adapter between the central heating boiler and the thermostat and provides the power supply to the thermostat.The Easy is connected to your home network via WiFi. To make this connection, you need to enter the password on the small touchscreen via an onscreen keyboard. This is especially tricky with a long password.
Programming the clock program is done via the app and is based on six adjustable temperatures. A little deeper in the app, you will find the holiday function in addition to the clock program, with which you can indicate that you are on holiday until a certain date. It is also useful that you can choose per public holiday whether these should be treated as Sundays. Confusingly, all these programming options (clock program, holiday function and holiday function) are on a different tab in the interface. In addition to the traditional clock program, the Easy also supports geofencing. A presence and absence temperature are used here. You can also indicate when you go to sleep. So you will not get a complete clock program in combination with geofencing. Despite the OpenTherm adapter, the Nefit is clearly designed for Nefit boilers. For example, the app has a separate tab for gas consumption, but that only works in combination with Nefit boilers.
Nefit ModuLine EasyPrice
www.nefit.nl 7 Score 70
- Holidays and holidays
- Optional adapter
- No web interface
predecessors, although the edge is now also white and the front is made of tempered glass instead of plastic. You can make your own design with static foil, a code for a free copy is included. The front still shows the current temperature in orange numbers and alternatively you can't show anything or the time. You use a boiler module for connection. To install it, connect to the ThermoSmart via WiFi, after which you enter the password for your wireless network.
After touching the thermostat, the controls appear with which you can change the temperature and pause the clock program. The clock program is programmed via the website and works on the basis of four self-determined standard temperatures that you drag into the weekly schedule as blocks. The Calendar function is useful, with which you can set a different program for each calendar day. You cannot set the normal clock program via the smartphone app, but you can set the Agenda. Like the physical thermostat, the app offers a pause button. This switches off the clock program and lowers the temperature to the basic temperature. Note that the basic temperature is set to 5 degrees by default, in our opinion it is more convenient to set it to 16 degrees, for example. The ThermoSmart V3 supports geofencing, which automatically puts the temperature on pause when you leave the set region. ThermoSmart stands out for its links, in addition to IFTTT, for example, Domoticz is also officially supported. An extra interesting link is that with a smart meter. You can give ThermoSmart permission to read the information from your smart meter, after which this information is used for an extensive energy report. The total gas consumption is known via the smart meter, while the gas consumption of the heating boiler is known via OpenTherm. As a result, a distinction can be made in gas consumption between heating, hot water and other gas consumption, whereby the rest is usually cooking. The extensive energy reports are only possible in combination with a smart meter and an OpenTherm central heating boiler.
www.thermosmart.nl 8 Score 80
- Easy programming
- Links (also with smart meter)
- Pause temperature standard 5 degrees
With a size of 19 by 12 cm, the Toon is a huge thermostat. Toon also has a 7-inch touchscreen on which information such as your energy consumption, the weather forecast and of course the temperature is displayed. Like most other smart thermostats, Toon works with a boiler module that supplies Toon with energy. You also receive a module for the meter cupboard that you connect to your smart meter or via supplied sensors on older non-smart energy meters. This allows you to see your current and historical energy consumption with Toon. By the way, when you purchase Toon you will receive the installation by a technician.
We tested Toon with software version 4.8 and it is well put together. The speed is fine and the appearance looks fresh. You can connect and operate smoke detectors, smart plugs and Hue lighting via the app. Unfortunately you cannot program the plugs and lamps. The app has been improved since our last test and now includes the option to set the clock program. On the other hand, the web interface is no longer offered. A big difference with the other thermostats in this article is that you pay a monthly contribution of 4.50 euros for Toon. This contribution applies to customers of Eneco as well as customers of other energy companies. If you cancel the subscription, the app can no longer communicate with Toon and Toon functions as a traditional clock thermostat on which you can see the live energy consumption. Other extras for which you actually do not need the app (such as weather information, linking Hue lighting or smart Z-Wave plugs or smoke detectors) do not work without a subscription. That's a shame to say the least if you've invested in it. You can see all the differences here.
€275 (or cheaper with an Eneco energy contract)
€ 4.50 per month
www.toon.nl 6 Score 60
- Live consumption
- Layout screen
- Clear interface
- Monthly subscription
- No app without a subscription
- No web interface
All tested smart thermostats can be provided with a clock program, where you can easily make adjustments. Of course, all smart thermostats also have an app that allows you to change the temperature on the go. Geofencing can be a useful option and is supported by Nest, Tado, Honeywell, Anna, ThermoSmart and Nefit. Of these thermostats, Tado has the best-developed geofencing option, where you can choose to ignore geofencing at certain times via the clock program. The app and web interface work well in this regard, making the Tado our favorite and receiving the Best tested quality mark from us. If you value the wall control, Nest will be positive: by turning you immediately change the temperature. If you don't want to spend that much, the Honeywell Lyric T6 is an interesting choice. The Lyric is suitable for both on/off and OpenTherm control, has a great app and supports geofencing if desired. So he gets our Editor's Tip. The Netamo Thermostat is also affordable and has a great app and web interface. Unfortunately, it only supports on/off control, so it is not the optimal choice for a modern central heating boiler. However, Netatmo's software is fine, so hopefully an OpenTherm variant will follow. If you want (in the long run) zone control with which you can set the temperature per room, you can contact Itho Daalderop, Tado or Netatmo for the tested thermostats.
Below you will find a table with all test results (.pdf).