Richard, I have a Honeywell Vision Pro Thermostat. I was wondering how I can program the settings to save money? It was recently installed six months ago and I want to make sure it is programmed to get the best out of it for a heat pump. At this point I do not believe I have saved money and was told I could save 10% or more with a programmable thermostat. Please help me with the appropriate settings and give me some insight that would help me save money. Thank you and I look forward to your answer.
The VisionPro can save you money but with all things being relative the temperatures this year can be colder than the temperatures last year so the system would run more thereby costing you more money.
Another factor is has anything changed in the home? Maybe a lot of people going in and out or a window cracked open somewhere?
Is it programmed properly? If it is not then you will likely see no savings depending on the settings. Or if someone keeps changing it to turn the temperature up it won’t save you any money.
There are 4 settings:
Wake – this should be set when you wake up in the morning. Preferably 30 minutes to an hour so the house will be warm or cool when you wake. Example – if it is winter at night when you go to bed the night setback goes to say 60°. You wake up at 6am so at 5:30 am you set the program to turn the heat on for a set point of 70°.
Leave – this should be the time approximately 30 minutes before you leave. The temperature gets setback so the system will not run while you are at work. Example – The temperature set point while you are getting ready for work is 70°. You leave the house at 7:30 am. So the thermostat should be set back to 60° at 7 am so while you are at work the system will only run when the temperature goes down to 60 degrees.
Return – this should be set to approximately 30 minutes to an hour before come back home for the day. Example – you return home at 5 pm. The program should be set for 70° to turn on at 4:30 pm so the house is warm when you get home.
Sleep – this should be set to set back temperature for when you are sleeping. Example – in the winter set it down to say 60° about 30 minutes before you go to bed.
With heat pumps the temperature differential is typically 3° for the auxiliary heat to kick in and assist the heat pump so if the temperature in the house is 60° and you program it to come on and bring the temperature up to 70° you will have the auxiliary heat come which it is common in most heat pump installations to have electric heat. Electric heat is 100% efficient but it costs more per BTU to produce than the heat pump refrigeration cycle will cost you. So from 60° to 67° you will be using auxiliary heating in addition to the heat pump if the differential is set at 3° (it is adjustable in the installers program set up). You could expand that setting to to reduce that cost however when the temperature gets really cold (below 38°) then the differential is a factor in your warmth because the second stage or auxiliary heating will not kick on until the differential is met. So if you have the thermostat set for 70° and the differential is 3° the auxiliary heating will not kick in until 67°. If you make that a 4 degree differential in the installers set up program the back-up or second stage heating will come on until 66° and you can become uncomfortable.
When the temperature outdoors falls below around 38 degrees the heat pump mechanical heating will begin to stop keeping up with demand. This is the reason why air source heat pumps are installed in southern regions and not really good for northern regions as the temperatures in the winter are frequently lower than 38°. So if the temperatures in the region where you live rarely fall below 38° then the differential setting will not make that much of a difference but if you live in the mid-atlantic region then it is probably not a good idea to reset the differential anymore than 3°.
Using the VisionPro thermostat in that fashion will save you money. Now saying all that if you have settings like that and if you still have problems it could be something to do with your heat pump. The best thing to do, after checking the thermostat program, is to call a heat pump repair service company to check it out. I hope that gave you some insight into your thermostat and your potential problem. Good Luck.