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Your Guide to Buying a New Thermostat

When it comes to buying a new thermostat, you have several options. But thermostats aren’t something that most people know much about, so choosing a new one can seem daunting. That’s why we here at Big Mountain Heating & Air Conditioning have compiled a buyer’s guide to buying a new thermostat. Let’s get started!

Thermostat Types

Today, there are two types of thermostats worth buying: programmable thermostats and smart thermostats. While traditional, simple thermostats can still be found, they are outdated and won’t do much for you,  which is why we focus on programmable and smart models. Let’s talk about the pros and cons of each.

Programmable Thermostats

Programmable thermostats are what most people think of when they think about thermostats. These models require you to manually select every setting, including temperature, heating or cooling and fan settings. You can also program the temperature settings around your schedule to increase the system’s efficiency and save you money. While programmable thermostats were once too complicated for most homeowners to properly program — and therefore weren’t very helpful — most now have a digital interface that’s pretty easy to use.

Programmable thermostats are the most cost-effective choice for any home, and they typically allow programming options for every day of the week and even the time of day. However, their lack of connection to the internet prevents remote control, voice control and fully flexible scheduling.

Smart Thermostats

By now, you’ve heard of smart thermostats, which connect to your home’s internet to offer a myriad of features. Smart thermostats, also called WiFi thermostats, offer all of the functionality of a programmable thermostat and more. 

Their WiFi connection allows you to completely control your HVAC system via an app on your smartphone, which can be done from anywhere in the world. With unlimited programming options, smart thermostats allow you to maximize your system’s energy efficiency — some models can even learn your habits and preferences to program themselves without any work from you! They also lower your energy usage, allow finer system control, reduce your carbon footprint and save money overall. Smart thermostats even monitor your HVAC system to alert you when something might not be working correctly. 

Of course, all of these benefits come with a downside: cost. As in all things, you get what you pay for, and smart thermostats are the more expensive option. In addition, not every HVAC unit, especially older models, is compatible with smart technology.

Which thermostat is right for you?

Each type of thermostat comes with its own set of pros and cons, but the choice really comes down to your specific needs and preferences. Here are some things to consider when choosing a new thermostat:

  • Do you want a programmable or WiFi thermostat?
  • Is your HVAC system compatible with smart technology? Is it compatible with the brand and model you’re looking to buy?
  • Does your current thermostat wiring support the thermostat you want, and if not, are you willing to pay a professional for rewiring?
  • If you’ve decided on a smart thermostat, do you need a certain brand to match other smart devices in your home?
  • Are you concerned about matching the thermostat to your home’s aesthetics?

The Best Time to Buy a Thermostat

Once you’ve considered and explored all of the brands and models to settle on the perfect choice for you, it’s time to buy your new thermostat. The best time to get your new thermostat is as soon as possible — this will maximize your energy savings! However, you’ll likely find some good deals during special sales throughout the year if you’re shopping for a thermostat on your own instead of buying one through your HVAC company.

If you’re ready for a new thermostat, the time to act is now! The experts at Big Mountain Air can help you choose the perfect smart thermostat for your home and budget. Then, one of our skilled technicians will install it and ensure that everything is working properly before they leave.

Contact Big Mountain Heating & Air Conditioning today to get started on your smart thermostat installation!

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What Our Customers Have To Say

Good Rebates

This is a review for a complete HVAC system replacement from Big Mountain. I started at the SMUD website looking for the best rebate program and found a list of contractors there. I vetted out companies that had a lower number of completed jobs per the SMUD rebate program data.

Lee S.

Very Professional

Had my A/C go out yesterday, called Big Mountain today and they had a serviceman in my area of Lincoln, he was here within a half hour and fix my unit in a very professional manner, and the cost was reasonable. I was very impressed with the company and the serviceman.

Tom D.


I had a appointment with them between 1-3 and one of their staff members called me and kept me updated when they will arrive which was nice. Steve arrived on time and was really nice for explaining what could the cause be. My ac fan was working but cool air wasn’t coming out.

Krystal L.