The 10 Best Thermostats

Updated February 20, 2018 by Quincy Miller

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We spent 43 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. Your thermostat is like your appendix: small and easy to forget about. But if it goes on the fritz, you'll be in a world of hurt. Luckily, the models on this list are simple to program and use while also helping control your utility costs, so you can enjoy your home in comfort year-round. They're fairly easy to install as well so, unlike your appendix, they should never land you in the hospital. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best thermostat on Amazon.

10. Ecobee 4

In addition to being a state-of-the art model with advanced voice control features, the Ecobee 4 promises to help you save some cash on your heating and cooling bills. It's compatible with Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, Samsung SmartThings, and other smart systems.
  • zone-specific controls
  • adapts to local weather
  • voice control is a bit buggy
Brand ecobee
Model EB-STATE4-01
Weight 2.7 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

9. LuxPro Digital 2

For an inexpensive, no-frills option that still gets the job done, there's the LuxPro Digital 2. It won't win any awards for design and it can't program your DVR for you, but it provides a reliable temperature and is easy to read and use.
  • simple to install
  • budget-friendly selection
  • works only with furnaces
Brand LuxPro
Model PSD010B
Weight 8 ounces
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

8. Emerson Sensi

The Emerson Sensi works with most heating and cooling systems, including gas, electric, and radiant, so it's a fairly safe bet if you're new to the world of home upgrades. Once it's on the wall, it's easy to control wirelessly via its companion app.
  • keypad lockout function
  • app walks you through installation
  • connectivity can be a bit flaky
Brand Emerson Thermostats
Model 152454888
Weight 11.4 ounces
Rating 3.6 / 5.0

7. Orbit Clear Comfort

If you want to spend more time enjoying your air conditioner than programming it, the Orbit Clear Comfort is one of the most user-friendly options on the market. You can program each day individually, as well as copy settings from one day to the next.
  • manual is very helpful
  • wires are all clearly labeled
  • display is hard to see
Brand Orbit
Model 83521
Weight 4 ounces
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

6. Honeywell 9000

The Honeywell 9000 has a large and responsive touchscreen and can be conveniently controlled from anywhere using a tablet or smartphone with its Total Connect Comfort app installed. Its display can be set to one of many colors to match your home's decor.
  • controls humidity levels
  • provides local weather alerts
  • requires a c wire to operate
Brand Honeywell
Model TH9320WF5003
Weight 8.8 ounces
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

5. Lux Universal 7-Day

The Lux Universal 7-Day works with virtually any HVAC system you may have, and is remarkably user-friendly. It's programmable for 2 or 4 periods per day and can lock out unauthorized users, so children or house guests can't change the temperature at random.
  • adjustable temperature range limits
  • large easy-to-read display
  • makes noise when screen is active
Brand Lux
Model TX9600TS
Weight 9.9 ounces
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

4. Ecobee 3

With its sleek design and interface, the Ecobee 3 will keep your home at the perfect temperature in style, and is one of the smartest and most efficient models on the market. It uses remote sensors to monitor every room, delivering hot or cold air only where needed.
  • full color touchscreen
  • works with amazon alexa
  • doesn't rely on battery power
Brand ecobee
Model EB-STATe3-O2
Weight 1.4 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

3. Lux WIN100

Just because you have a wall AC unit or a floor heater doesn't mean that you shouldn't have a convenient way to control it, and to that end, there's the Lux WIN100. It includes a built-in outlet, so you won't need to sacrifice plug space to power it.
  • can program weekends differently
  • suitable for outdoor use
  • good for garages and even doghouses
Brand Lux
Model WIN100-A05
Weight 10.4 ounces
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

2. Nuheat Home Radiant

If you've put in heated floors, you'll want to pair them with the Nuheat Home Radiant, as it's both easy to read and program. The 3.5" color touchscreen gives you plenty of information without overloading you with details, making it a versatile, user-friendly option.
  • protective plastic over screen
  • helpful setup wizard
  • works with tile and stone
Brand Nuheat
Model AC0056
Weight 6.4 ounces
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

1. Nest Learning 3rd Generation

The Nest Learning 3rd Generation has a sleek minimalist look that won't detract from your home's decor. It also boasts a fancy auto schedule feature that learns from your family's routines, so you don't have to spend time programming it, unless you just feel like it.
  • keeps a record of your energy usage
  • quick and easy to install
  • multiple language options available
Brand Nest
Model T3007ES
Weight 1.7 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

Regulation And Consistency

Temperature regulation can be an extremely important consideration for your home, particularly if you live in areas where the external temperature fluctuates rapidly or if you live in a place that experiences dramatic season changes. Comfort in your home is of the utmost importance when you spend so much of your time there with your family. It stands to reason, then, that you want to maintain as much control over your internal environment as possible so that everyone in the household can get through that tough season of oppressive heat and humidity in the summer, while also surviving that chilly season around the holidays.

Some people think it's easier to warm one's self than it would be to cool down, as one's body temperature is already a naturally-warm 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit. However, there's still nothing wrong with using a tool to keep the temperature as consistent as possible in each room of your home. A thermostat will be a big help in this regard. Just the same, if you have a lot of appliances, like ovens or refrigerators, independent thermostats can regulate their temperatures as well.

A thermostat is considered the main control component for either a heating or cooling system with a target internal temperature (or setpoint) that needs to be maintained. A thermostat accomplishes this temperature maintenance by switching the various heating or cooling devices on or off in order to maintain a set temperature. Examples of appliances that use thermostats include refrigerators, ovens, and central heating systems.

Thermostats typically make use of a variety of sensors that measure the internal temperature of their surrounding environments. Common sensor types can include a thermistor or a bimetallic strip. The sensor output is then responsible for controlling the appliance. In most cases, the controlled appliance will run continuously and will not shut off until the desired temperature has been reached.

Thermostats can be either non-programmable or programmable. Most non-programmable thermostats have, at the very least, a digital display readout with independent buttons for raising or lowering the temperature. For those who may not be technologically-inclined or prefer simplicity, there is still a place for the non-programmable thermostat and they're certainly easy to use. By contrast, the programmable thermostat offers additional options that include setting various temperatures at different times of the day and even on different days. This certainly comes in handy if you live in areas where the weather changes frequently.

Many modern programmable thermostats now make use of touchscreen technology, which eliminates the need for so many buttons on their main panels. Such an interface also cuts down the need for reading complex manuals, as everything you need is available right on the panel screen.

A Brief History Of Thermostats

The earliest recorded use of a thermostat control dates back to around 1620 when Dutch builder Cornelis Drebbel invented one made from mercury that was used to regulate the temperature of a chicken incubator. Drebbel was also the inventor of the first submersible submarine.

The modern form of thermostat control was invented in the 1830s by Scottish chemist Andrew Ure. Ure patented the bi-metallic thermostat after having worked with various textile mills and recognizing the need to regulate their temperatures.

Annoyed at the fact that his classroom was never warm enough, Wisconsin professor Warren S. Johnson invented the first electric room thermostat in 1883. This was in response to the fact that the building in which Johnson taught was heated by a basement furnace, which needed constant manual adjustments by a custodian. Johnson's original design included a bell that would ring as a signal for the janitor to adjust the furnace damper.

Following in his footsteps was Swiss-born immigrant Albert Butz, who patented his own thermostat design in 1885 that regulated furnace heat by opening and closing a furnace door using an automatic pulley system. Butz eventually formed the Butz Thermoelectric Regulator Company, which then became known as the Minneapolis Heat Regulator Company.

In 1906, young engineer Mark Honeywell formed Honeywell Heating Specialty Co. Incorporated, which specialized in hot water heat generators. By 1927, this company and the Minneapolis Heat Regulator Company merged to lay the foundation for the modern innovation of Honeywell International, which is still considered one of the most successful thermostat manufacturers today.

Maintaining Control

Minimalism, efficiency, and the ease of programming a thermostat are going to be the most important factors when making one's choice. When choosing a digital or wireless thermostat, the digital interface should be bright enough to read.

Some thermostats even have the ability to automatically program your temperature regulation based on your historical pattern of scheduling the device. This feature can definitely save you time when it comes to re-programming the unit.

Other thermostats can even keep track of your energy usage, which comes in handy if you want to save on the electric bill each month.

Full color and backlit touchscreens are also quite common for modern thermostats, so if those features make it easy to see, then go for it.

For large buildings with multiple floors, wireless thermostats also come in very handy, as they can be monitored and set from different locations (i.e. adjacent buildings).

Finally, if you have young kids and don't want them messing around with your thermostat's settings, your investment should include built-in security features, such as password protection.

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Last updated on February 20, 2018 by Quincy Miller

Quincy is a writer who was born in Texas, but moved to Los Angeles to pursue his life-long dream of someday writing a second page to one of his screenplays.

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