WIFI thermostat - inexpensive solution for remote control

Discussion in 'HVAC Heating & Cooling' started by JerryR, Apr 3, 2012.

  1. JerryR

    JerryR Member

    Messages:
    257
    Location:
    Florida
    The HD Big Box store sells a thermostat made by Filtrete that connects to your WIFI Internet router.. It allows you to monitor house indoor temp and adjust your thermostat via an iPhone app or via Internet web site remotely from anywhere in the world.

    I installed one in my primary home and one at vacation home. they work great. Even when home I adjust the A/C from my iPhone at my bedside. When traveling between homes I can turn the A/C down before arriving so it is cool when I arrive.

    It is Model 3M50 thermostat by Filtrete and it is only $99.00.

    You can also change programs, set it to hold temp, change it from heat to cool, etc.

    Great device.

    Jerry
  2. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Messages:
    4,185
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    Does it trend stats like usage per day/week/month/year?
  3. BobL43

    BobL43 DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,799
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Wow, another neat gadget. I only have one home, and pretty much always there, but it might be nice not to have to walk 15 feet or so to the nearest thermostat. I have 4 heating zones in my house, though and all have setback temps set for various times of the day.

    Does the software address multiple units? Oh yeah, you have 2 in different locations. LOL:rolleyes:
  4. JerryR

    JerryR Member

    Messages:
    257
    Location:
    Florida

    No, but. There is a third party software that you can load on a PC that poles the thermostat every minute and allows the detail to be exported to a cvs file. It also logs outside temp and humidity based on your zip code location by the minute. The PC needs to be running to log and store the info.

    Jerry
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2012
  5. JerryR

    JerryR Member

    Messages:
    257
    Location:
    Florida
    Bump. Update.

    The WiFi thermostats have performed well beyond my expectations. Actually I now never touch them as I find that it is easier to adjust via iPad or iPhone app even when at home.

    It is also nice to be able to monitor indoor temp while away from either house via iPhone app.

    Surprisingly, my wife is just as fond of them as I am. We have the app loaded on my iPhone, her iPhone, my iPhone and our iPad.

    This is some Really cool yet inexpensive useful toy.

    Jerry
  6. brunetmj1

    brunetmj1 New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    New York
    What does the wiring on the furnace control board look like ? Wireless capability requires a C (common wire) to run the wirless. Most old homes just have two or three wire
    thermostats.
  7. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,983
    Location:
    New York, NY
    We have had ours about two years and love it.

    There are a couple of ways to deal with the C-wire issue, and the manufacturer has gone all-out to make it easy for folks who have an older system. One is if there are any unused wires in the wire bundle run to the thermostat, you can pick up the needed voltage off the transformer that is inevitably down there in the furnace room as part of the setup. Alternatively, with the Filtrete, all you need is a cheapo power supply from Radio Shack, which you can just plug into the outlet nearest the thermostat, and run the little wire behind the wall up or over to the hole where the wires come out for the thermostat. Filtrete even has a how-to video for those who don't know how to fish a little wire through the wall. Finally, you can get lucky (like we were) and have one of those 1960-vintage "clock thermostats" that had a mechanical clock and mechanical day/night timer built in. The power for that will also work; the Filtrete is very flexible on voltages, etc., for powering it, and gives you detailed instructions on how to hook it up, which wire goes where, etc., depending upon what it is to control and how you are powering it. You can pull up the install instructions online at the filtrete web site, and there are a number of YouTube videos by Filtrete on installation, etc.

    Oddly, the instructions seem a tad counterintuitive; I mean it can't be that easy, right? They were counterintuitive enough that the mope from our oil heat dealer, who I asked to install it, insisted on wiring the power part his way (after asking "You don't need that wifi stuff, do you?" Uh, yeah, that's sort of the point). After he left, having done a nice, neat, but incorrect installation, I just moved the equivalent of the C wire into the right slot, and VOILA!, worked like a champ. The "right slot", as used in the last sentence, means the one that the INSTRUCTIONS, which I bothered to READ, said it should go in.

    We just use ours to control the hydronic heat, so it's not doing anything too complicated. However, it is amazingly-easy to set the 4 temperature/times for each day using the matrix online. I also use it to set it back when nobody will be at home for a day or two, setting it to AWAY mode and HOME mode, as need be, from my smartphone. I have friends who have a weekend/holiday home in the Hamptons and bought this Filtrete thermostat from HD; they set it on "away" when they leave, and set it on "home" when they are within an hour of arrival driving. One of those little conveniences that you didn't appreciate until you had it.
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2012
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