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System Monitor Functionality Now Complete in Home IQ

by on December 18, 2014

Capping off an exciting year at ecobee, we have released two great new features that complete the System Monitor functionality in Home IQ. To reacquaint yourself with the previously released features of System Monitor, refer to our blog posts on System and Schedule.

What’s new – Follow Me

The first new feature is called “Follow Me” and provides information from wireless remote sensors paired with your ecobee3. You may want to take a look at our FAQ on Follow Me (for ecobee3) before you continue to read more about Follow Me in Home IQ.

By clicking “Follow Me” from System Monitor in Home IQ, you can see the temperature and occupancy measured by each wireless remote sensor paired with your ecobee3 as well as the calculated average temperature across all wireless remote sensors that are currently detecting occupancy (and are being used to make heating and cooling decisions).

In the example below, occupancy is only detected in the Living Room at 8:45 PM where the wireless remote sensor is measuring a temperature of 68F.

Follow Me 1a-1
Now let’s see what happens if occupancy is detected in a second location. In the example below, both the “home” (69F) and “Living Room” (67F) sensors detect occupancy at 9:55 PM, and as a result we have a calculated average temperature of 68F. Learn more about how we calculate the average temperature.
Follow Me 1b-1
Next, let’s tie this into the previously discussed “Schedule” functionality and see how that correlates with “Follow Me”. In the example below we have homeowners returning home earlier than their scheduled “Home” period, as detected by either the ecobee3 or a remote sensor, so ecobee3 goes into “Smart Home” and starts optimizing for comfort. You can see this below – the first swim lane in the top portion of the image indicates an “Away” period while the second swim lane in light blue indicates “Smart Home” being triggered. Similarly, if you look at the bottom portion you can see the desired heat temperature jumping from 65F to 68F.
Follow Me 2a-1
Now let’s see what the data for the same date and time looks like when we switch to “Follow Me” and what we can learn from it. The first thing you will notice is that all four wireless remote sensors detect occupancy (which is why “Smart Home” was triggered). Furthermore, because all four wireless remote sensors detected occupancy, ecobee3 is using the calculated average temperature of 65F. Finally, we can also see ecobee3 go into “Smart Away” around 11 PM (right before the “Sleep” period starts). This happens because none of the sensors detect occupancy for the 2 hours prior.
Follow Me 2b-1

What’s new – Weather Impact

The second new feature is called “Weather Impact” and is designed to help you understand how weather impacts how long your heating and cooling equipment runs (and as a result your energy bill) even when there is no change in your comfort settings and occupancy schedule. The chart is centred on a fixed baseline of 65F (18C), which is the temperature when there is typically no heating or cooling load. The days of the week appear at the bottom of the chart with weekends identified in circles.

The first example below is from September 2013 (which is a shoulder month so we have both heating and cooling equipment in use). The higher the daily outdoor temperature (signified by the black line), the longer cooling is engaged; the lower the daily average temperature, the longer heating is engaged.

Weather Impact - September 2013
The Weather Impact functionality can also be used to investigate increases or decreases in heating/cooling run times that cannot be explained by weather impact alone. The example below is from October 2013 (we are now transitioning to heating season). You can see that for the most part there is a very strong relationship between the daily average outdoor temperature and heating run time.
However, a couple of days stand out:
1) During the weekend of October 19, 20, even though it is significantly colder outside (compared to October 17, 18), the heating does not run for longer. This could be due to a number of reasons, including changes in occupancy – you can get to the bottom of this by looking at the “Schedule” and “Follow Me” views for the same date range.
2) On October 24th there is a significant increase run time even though the weather is not much different than the next few days (which have lower run times). Again, this could be due to changes in occupancy (for example if you decided to work from home).
Weather Impact - October 2013
Please let us know what you think of all the features in System Monitor and stay tuned for more great features in the coming months, including new Home IQ energy reports and more data and control from the ecobee web portal and mobile apps.