Central Heating Thermostats – any experts?

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  • Central Heating Thermostats – any experts?
  • Premier Icon crispo
    Subscriber

    Can someone tell me a bit about adding a thermostat to our house!? I’m a bit cold sometimes……

    At the moment I can control what time the heating comes on and for how long. There is a temperature control on the boiler itself which I can set what the heaters go up to, same on the radiators. But they’re just nobs.

    Is it possible to add a thermostat next to the on off control on the landing, or replacing it? I find that with the temperature varying quite a bit one morning the house is warm and one day cold. I just want it to be a set temperature for when we get up and get back in.

    Is this something I can do and how much would it cost!?

    Thanks

    Premier Icon brant
    Subscriber

    I have one that I can control from my iPhone. As I keep not coming home and having to go away and being forgetful it’s rather ace.

    It’s made by Heatmiser and wasn’t ridiculously expensive.

    Premier Icon leffeboy
    Subscriber

    It can be very easy but it depends a bit on what controls you already have. For example, the thermostat on the boiler might control the temperature of the water but it might also control the ‘set’ temperature of wherever the thermostat is in your house.

    If its easy it might be 60 quid for something straightforward or 150 for a wireless one that you could put in your living room rather than the hall.

    stick up a pic or two of what you have already and someone here might recognise it

    Premier Icon footflaps
    Subscriber

    I’ve bought the same one as Brant – £125. Not fitted it yet:


    Wifi Remote controllable CH thermostat by brf, on Flickr

    Premier Icon footflaps
    Subscriber

    At the moment I can control what time the heating comes on and for how long. There is a temperature control on the boiler itself which I can set what the heaters go up to, same on the radiators. But they’re just nobs.

    Sounds like you have a timer and a boiler CH temp control. You just need to add a thermostat in series with that lot, so the boiler only switches on if the room is cold enough. You can then set the timer to 24h on and just set a time / temp profile using the room thermostat eg the one above.

    Depending on how your boiler is wired and works (Hot water and does it need a pump overrun) how you wire in the room thermostat will vary. The Boiler manual should tell you how to do it for your model.

    Liftman
    Member

    I have fitted the same one as brant and FL it works a treat

    Thrustyjust
    Member

    Drayton do a great controller for your home. Set varying temps through everyday or block settings and let it get on with the job in hand. We have one and it is brilliant.
    http://www.draytoncontrols.co.uk/Digistat2RFProgrammableRoomThermostatWireless.aspx

    Premier Icon midlifecrashes
    Subscriber

    These work well and are reliable.

    Salus RT500RF

    Basically the “sender” unit gets wired in in place of the time clock on the boiler, the thermostat is combined with timer/programmer and is wireless so you can stick it where you want or move it from room to room.

    If you’re happy with digging into the (mains) wiring of the boiler, it’s pretty straightforward, but a gas safe guy should be able to do it cheap enough. Ring a couple for quotes, but you supply the part.

    Junkyard
    Member

    Adds Wi fi thermostats to STW list of “first world must haves”

    To be fair if i was replacing i would get one

    Premier Icon footflaps
    Subscriber

    Adds Wi fi thermostats to STW list of “first world must haves”

    You really want a Wifi controllable wood burner – that’s the 2013 STW niche…

    Premier Icon crispo
    Subscriber

    Will have a look at the boiler and control unit and get some pictures up.

    By the sound of it I can get one of these units that a few of you have and sounds like what I need. Have a friend who is a sparky so could be a job for him if it just needs wiring into existing control unit!

    Thanks for all the help so far!

    joemarshall
    Member

    If you’ve got a timer wired in an okay place for a thermostat (somewhere that warms up when the heating is on), you should probably be able to replace that with a wired thermostat. If you unscrew and look at the back of the timer (with power off at the fusebox preferably), if you are lucky, it will have two normal mains wires, plus two ‘switch’ wires. So will a wired thermostat. If you’re very unlucky, the timer will have a different wiring arrangement, or a battery to power the timer so only two switch wires, if so, I’d ignore me, and get a wireless one, like recommended above.

    Whatever you get, you quite likely want something that is 7 day programmable or at least allows different weekday vs weekend programs.

    You can get a wireless one which you attach to the boiler itself, but personally if you’ve already got wiring for a room stat, I’d just switch that over, saves opening up the boiler. I’ve had a cheap one, and it was fine for a few years, but the transmission distance went down, then it died recently, now have a fancy honeywell one, which is much nicer to program, and supposedly should not die in the same way.

    joemarshall
    Member

    Oh, and unless your mate is very cheap, paying someone to do it is money for old rope – we’re talking wiring a plug level of complexity here.

    Premier Icon crispo
    Subscriber

    I think for the price of buying him a pint I will play it safe!

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    You really want a Wifi controllable wood burner – that’s the 2013 STW niche…

    Tick 😀

    seba560
    Member

    I find that with the temperature varying quite a bit one morning the house is warm and one day cold.

    If I were in your position and the house was losing so much heat so quickly, I’d look a spending money on insulation rather than gadgets.

    nicko74
    Member

    Question: Nest in its hype/ spiel says that ‘most thermostats don’t deal with radiators well’ because they don’t take into account how long radiators take to warm up and cool down. As a result, apparently, rooms are cold when you want them to be already warm, and then overshoot the target temperature.

    How much of this is BS/ to what extent do these thermostats take that into account?

    SkillWill
    Member

    Those heatmiser ones work at 802.11b, that would drag your wifi network down to b speeds, right? Ouch…

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    Those heatmiser ones work at 802.11b, that would drag your wifi network down to b speeds, right? Ouch…

    Not on a mixed speed network.

    joemarshall
    Member

    How much of this is BS/ to what extent do these thermostats take that into account?

    The thermostat stops when it reaches a certain temp (T-on), then starts again when it gets to a lower temp (T-off). The width of that (T-on,T-off) band changes how well it works with a particular radiator system.

    With our honeywell one, you can change the width of the band. I think it defaults to 1.5C, ie. .75c either way around the set point. Our heating system seems not to overshoot massively.

    It also has an option for pre-warming, where you set what temperature you want it to be at a particular time, and depending on the current temperature, it will turn on the radiators earlier so that it reaches the set temperature bang on the start time.

    Really though, while it may theoretically be a problem, I’ve not noticed it being a pain. Yes the house temp fluctuates slightly, but not so much that you’d notice.

    If you really want to deal with that, you can get fancy systems that control each radiator based on a thermostat as well as the boiler, and allow a controlled amount of flow into radiators, so that they smoothly bring the temperature to the set point and don’t overshoot much, and can then smoothly add a bit every so often to keep it there.

    nicko74
    Member

    It also has an option for pre-warming, where you set what temperature you want it to be at a particular time, and depending on the current temperature, it will turn on the radiators earlier so that it reaches the set temperature bang on the start time.

    That’s the ticket, want that one. 🙂

    spooky_b329
    Member

    We replaced a traditional thermostat with a Honeywell CM907 programmer.

    It was like night and day, suddenly the house didn’t yoyo between too cold and too warm. If you tell it you want the house to be 18 degrees at 7am, it will learn how long it takes to warm up the house and turn the heating on early so that 18 degrees is reached at 7am, and not 30 minutes later. You can also add an outside thermometer which apparently makes it even more accurate as it will learn how much your heat up times are affected by the outside temperature.

    As someone who has random days off work in the week, the ‘day off’ button was great as it means you can run the weekend program for the day rather than just leaving the heating on all day.

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    Edit: what spooky said

    Thrustyjust
    Member

    The drayton does the same, but you can just wind up the daytime temp if you are in for the day until it gets to the next scheduled time and it then reverts back to that setting. Takes a week or 2 to learn the warm up times but it is a great bit of kit. The only problem we have is the open fire makes it turn off the heating but just makes you run under cover in the bedroom quicker !! Nightime setback temp is great as it just keeps the house tempered at night and then is cheaper than a sudden glut of gas usage when its neeed in the morning to come up to temperature.

    Premier Icon footflaps
    Subscriber

    Well yesterday I finally got round to installing the Heatmiser Wifi thermostat I bought 11 months ago!

    Was a bit of a pain to set up as it turns out you can’t configure it from a Modern MAC (it mounts as an archaic Flash drive format which has been dropped by OSX, see: http://chris.gg/2011/11/heatmiser-prt-ts-wi-fi-thermostat-review-troubleshooting-tips/). So, once I’d wasted several hours trying with 4 different Macs, I borrowed the Wife’s works Windows laptop and set it up in 10 seconds!

    Bashed out a 35mm deep hole with an SDS drill:

    Cutting a hole for a Patress box by brf, on Flickr

    Fitted a 35mm Patress box where the old CH controller was:

    Patress box installed by brf, on Flickr

    Fitted the Heatmiser Wifi Controller

    Heatmiser Wifi Thermostat by brf, on Flickr

    and we now have CH control via iPhone from anywhere with Internet:

    Heatmiser Wifi Thermostat iPhone App by brf, on Flickr

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    Snap! They are very good. Now all I need as a gadget which tells my phone what the temp profile in the thermal store is 🙂

    spacecadett
    Member

    I added a Honeywell CM907 thermostat to my system last week. It is a 7 day programmable thermostat. My missus is soon going on mat leave for 12 months so I thought it would be a good time to add one.

    I am not an electrician or plumber but managed to instal it very easily. The instructions were ok to follow but what I found very helpful was a video on u-tube. If you search for wireless thermostat boiler instillation it’s by ‘The Ultimate Handyman’ and lasts 15 mins 20 secs. It’s a different boiler to mine but helped anyway. There is also a Honeywell ap that you can download to phones (iOS & Android) and there is a very helpful wiring table.

    I have noticed a huge difference in the house, no peaks & troughs in temp.

    Premier Icon deadslow
    Subscriber

    +1 for the honeywell CM907, doodle to install, day function ace and the house temp very consistent. best bit is not coming home to a house at 24 degrees cos the missus was cold and turned the old dial one all the way up!

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