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Smart energy solutions like Hive, Nest and Tado° have completely revolutionized the energy market. Now, we have the ability to control and monitor our heating from our smartphones, anywhere we like. This is incredibly convenient and user-friendly, but that’s not the only benefits energy management systems can offer.
Smart energy solutions allow for optimisation of energy performance, meaning you only use the energy you need - rather than wasting it.
The sensors contained in these systems negate the need for you to turn the heat up or down manually and they allow you to schedule your central heating (and in some cases water) remotely – giving you complete control of usage. They’ll also assess the room temperature and automatically adjust it to ensure optimum energy efficiency.
This saves you a considerable amount of money and also plays a key role in helping both individuals and businesses become more energy efficient and environmentally conscious.
With the global energy management system market valued at USD 35.17 billion in 2016 and set to hit USD 70.93 billion in 2022, now is the time to consider getting an energy management device.
In our guide below, we’ve looked at the different types of devices available to you, and the steps you can take to ensure you’re saving as much money as possible.
To save the maximum amount of money, even before you purchase a smart energy solution, you need to ensure that you’re paying the best price for your energy.
At Love Energy Savings, we want to make sure you enjoy the biggest savings possible which all starts with helping you get the best energy tariff.
With so many solutions on the market, you’ll be forgiven for feeling a bit overwhelmed when it comes to choosing the right system for you.
First of all, when you start your search, make sure that you’re looking for ‘smart energy solutions’ and not ‘smart meters’.
Smart energy solutions are operated remotely via your tablet, computer or smartphone. Whereas smart meters are an upgrade to traditional energy meters that are found in most homes and businesses - you can find more information about them in our smart meter guide.
The three main players in the smart energy solutions game are Hive, Nest and Tado°. They each have some key differences that might play into the final decision you make. To help you decide which is the best smart heating device for your home, use our comparison table below to discover key stats of each device.
Hive is one of the original and most well-known smart thermostats on the market. It has a variety of different features and is very user-friendly, helping it dominate the energy device market. It claims that it can save you £130 a year on heating.
Hive home automation has a range of features that can help you with more than just controlling your central heating. The device also boasts frost protection (identifying when the temperature drops below a certain level and warming the premises up so pipes don’t freeze) and has a holiday mode function.
One of the best features for tech-lovers is that when Hive is paired with the Amazon Echo, you can control your heating via voice control - welcome to the home of the future!
Hive doesn’t include a motion or light sensor - which Tado° and Nest both boast as standard. It also requires installation from an official British Gas engineer (but you don’t actually have to be a British Gas customer to use Hive)
Nest hit the market back in 2014 when Google purchased Nest Labs – a company that specialises in home automation devices. Since then, the ‘Nest vs Hive’ debate has raged on, but Google’s entry into the market has a couple of tricks up its sleeve that give it an edge
Out of the three smart energy devices we’ve compared, Nest is the most advanced in terms of sensory abilities. Not only does it monitor the room’s current temperature and adjust it accordingly, it also considers lighting, humidity and motion – intelligently recognising when you’re in the room or not. It has the capability to alert you when there’s an opportunity to save energy and can even control your hot water.
It also has a built-in holiday mode that allows you to schedule your heating so you know you’ll be coming back to a warm home (or office).
The biggest advantage of Nest over Hive or Tado° is that its smart system learns your schedule so you don’t have to programme it every day - instead, it intuitively adapts to you.
Much like the Hive thermostat, the Nest recommends professional installation, which you can either bundle in the price or arrange separately. These auxiliary costs make it the most expensive smart thermostat on the market although generally speaking, you’ll recoup the associated costs within the first two years.
Unlike the other two devices in this list, Nest requires a plug socket. This might not be a problem if you’ve been involved in your house build from the ground up but older properties might want to consider this before investing.
Finally, while the Nest thermostat will heat the room it is in perfectly, you will need multiple thermostats for other rooms. So you’ll have to buy more than one unit if you want to heat your entire property remotely. That said, you can control up to 20 thermostats at one time.
Tado° may be less well-known than Hive or Nest, but it’s equipped with a number of features that help it stand out from the crowd.
Tado° claims that it will cut your energy bills by 31%, paying for itself in only 12 months. And out of the three smart energy management systems we’ve looked at, Tado° is the only one which provides a guide for self-setup - a sign of it’s simplicity. Alternatively, you can pay £90 for a professional installation.
One reason why we’re warming to Tado° is the introduction of the Smart Radiator Thermostats. Fit one of these to each radiator in your house and you’ll have room-by-room control of your home’s entire eco-system. You can heat up or turn-down individual rooms depending on where people are in the house using the app.
Other great features include open-window detection, geolocation automation (meaning your thermostat can be configured to turn on/off automatically when your phone is within a set distance of the device), and humidity warnings, which helps reduce chances of damp.
Tado° can also link to your IFTTT, Amazon Echo or Apple HomeKit.
There have been rumours of minor software malfunctions, but regular firmware updates and bug fixes should put your mind at ease.
Each of these smart energy systems can save you money and have their own individual benefits and drawbacks. The one you choose will depend on your property and individual needs, so your decision about which is the best smart thermostat in the UK should be based on what you’re really looking for.
The best way to maximise your energy on your heating is a smart energy system combined with the best energy deal. At Love Energy Savings, we can save you up to 40% on your home and business energy. Before you invest in a smart energy system, make sure that you’re with the right energy supplier.