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Guest Post: Vacation and ecobee3

by on June 23, 2015

The following is a guest blog written by active ecobee community member Rodney Lane. Let us know if you would like to write for the blog!

Summer in Michigan is a special time. The cold winter months have passed, the snow has melted, and the rainy season has generated a beautiful green landscape. For many Michiganders, this is a prime time for going “up north” to our cottages, condos, and cabins. This is boating season, fishing season, cycling season, and for me, golf season. With all this time away from our primary home, a smart thermostat is an amazing upgrade that allows you to monitor your home’s temperature and an excellent way to save money automatically.

When I’m headed north for the weekend or even a weeklong trip, I don’t really need the house to be a comfortable 72 degrees back home. I can think of several times prior to owning my ecobee3 where we left the house and forgot to turn off the thermostat. Now, I have the ability to make that change from the road! Furthermore, on the way back home I can tell the ecobee3 to start preparing the house for us so we can walk into a comfortable environment.

The ecobee3 also has a Vacation Feature that allows me to enter my vacation in advance and the thermostat will automatically save money, as it will create a temperature setback for the time you are away. Your ecobee3 and the Vacation Feature will also make sure that your home is comfortable when you walk through the door. This is a great feature for sure, but I have found that it can be made even better with a little automation since the ecobee3 has IFTTT support. This is a web-based service that allows you to configure basic personal workflow automation. In this case, I have a “recipe” configured to automatically create a vacation entry in my ecobee3 when a new calendar entry is made on my Google calendar with the word ‘Vacation’. This simple feature can automate my thermostat to save both money and time.

Finally, if you are lucky enough to have high-speed internet access at your second home, I’d recommend an ecobee3 there as well. After all, being able to monitor those low temperatures in the winter could be a huge cost savings for you as well – like avoiding frozen pipes. And of course, telling the thermostat that you are on your way will ensure you walk in to a comfortable environment with fresh air instead of the stale air you are accustomed to.

Vacations are supposed to be a fun escape from your standard schedule. The ecobee3 gives you an easy way to put the furnace or air conditioning on auto-pilot and enjoy the time away.