When you’re wanting ways to decrease energy bills, getting a smart thermostat is an intelligent decision. These devices learn your favorite temperatures and routine and then develop an energy-efficient schedule to match. What’s even better is that you can change and keep an eye on your settings from nearly anywhere with your phone, whether you’re relaxing in bed or away from home. (You might even be able to receive a free smart thermostat depending on rebate programs from your utility supplier in Sacramento.)
In many instances, hooking up a smart home thermostat with the support of Bishop’s HVAC is a simple process if you have a newer house. But what if your residence is older or doesn’t have the right wiring? Can you still install a smart thermostat without C wire? We’ll help you navigate the process so you can choose the recommended thermostat and get energy savings for many years.
What Is a C Wire and What Does It Do on a Thermostat?
The majority of programmable thermostats run on batteries. When you’re making the move to a smart thermostat, you’ll discover that many have to have a C wire, or common wire, for power. Without this wire, your new thermostat might cause your heating and cooling system to have malfunctions.
You can find out if you have a C wire by doing the following:
- Switch off power to the thermostat at the breaker.
- Pull off the thermostat and look at the wiring.
- If there are five or six multicolored wires, you have what’s needed for a smart thermostat. You might be wondering what color is the C wire on a thermostat—and the answer to that is often blue.
- If there are three or four thin multicolored wires, you’re nearly there. Ensure the C wire isn’t tucked within the wall. If you can’t find one, we may be able to put in one for you or you may be able to run your new thermostat without one.
- If you have two thick wires, you may be able to use a smart thermostat with an adaptor just for high-voltage systems. Or you may be able to install a battery-powered smart thermostat, like the Lux Geo Wi-Fi Thermostat, if your wiring isn’t right and you don’t want to replace it.
Do Nest or ecobee Need a C Wire?
Two of the most popular brands are the Nest smart thermostat and ecobee smart thermostat. If you have two to four wires, these thermostats might be a fit for your home.
Nest says its thermostats are made to consume very little power and can often share it with your heating and cooling system. However, you may need to have a specialist like Bishop’s HVAC add a C wire with the Nest Thermostat E or Nest Learning Thermostat if you’re having power problems or a battery that’s always drained.
ecobee works with 24-volt systems (ones with three to six thermostat wires) and has a C wire adaptor. So, you’re taken care of if you don’t have a thermostat C wire.
Trust Bishop’s HVAC for Your Smart Thermostat Installation Needs
At Bishop’s HVAC, we’re always looking for methods to keep you more comfortable while keeping utility expenses reasonable. If you want to learn more about installing a smart thermostat without a C wire, give us a call at 916-591-6889. We can help you choose the right model for your residence and even add new wiring if needed.