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City tests smart thermostats for their potential to save money and energy

August 7 2015

Smart thermostats can help your household save energy and money.

This Thursday, the City of Vancouver, in partnership with Vancity, launched a pilot program to learn what energy and cost savings can be achieved in single family, duplex, and townhomes by using a smart thermostat.

The Smart Thermostat Pilot Program invites single family home owners in Vancouver to install a Nest, Honeywell Lyric, or ecobee3 smart thermostat, provide energy data, and in exchange receive a $125 rebate for the purchase of their thermostat.

How smart thermostats work

Smart thermostats are an emerging technology that make it easier for home owners to manage their home's energy consumption and energy costs. Recent research studies in the US, led by utilities, non-profits and technology manufacturers, have found that smart thermostats may provide significant annual energy savings.

For example, the thermostats can 'learn' when you typically leave the house for work, dialing down heating and then spring back into action in just enough time to make the house nice and toasty (or cool and comfortable, depending on the season) by the time you to get home.

Apply online

Qualified applicants will be asked to submit their utility data for the previous year and during the pilot, which runs till December 2016. Participants will also be asked to complete a couple of on-line surveys. Interested home owners can apply to participate until September 30, 2015.

Learn more and apply for the program 

Aligned with Vancouver's Greenest City Action Plan

The pilot will help the City understand what energy and greenhouse gas savings smart thermostats can achieve, what limits peoples' interest in the technology, and what types of homes are best suited to realize the benefits of smart thermostats. The resulting information will help the City in its ongoing efforts toward becoming the Greenest City and increasing the energy efficiency of Vancouver's building stock.

Buildings account for approximately 56% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the city. Vancouver's innovative work towards greening buildings has been recognized by the World Green Building Council, who have acknowledged the Vancouver Building By-Law as a world leading green building policy.

Pilots such as the Smart Thermostat Pilot help the City to understand what additional energy savings can be realized and how it can help home owners save money each year.