Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Fire Good!

Yesterday afternoon late my thermostat crapped out and died. It's been wonky for a while, and I kept meaning to replace it, but since it mostly worked, I put it off. It's about twenty-five years old, one of the first programmables, and it gave up the ghost. I fiddled with it, replaced the batteries, which I always thought were redundant–if the power goes off, I have a working thermostat, yay!–only the forced-air gas furnace doesn't blow, motor being electrical and all. And I need battery back up why ... ?

But the dead critter was beyond my expertise to resurrect.

Wasn't too cold, we could get by one night with the fireplace and the little electric heater, so we did.

I got on line, found that there are slew of new thermostats out there are programmable. Ran over to Lowe's and got one. (Actually, I ran over to Best Buy, which had them in stock, according to the internet, only to discover their webpage was not-so-accurate, they were out.) 

And why do I want one of those programmables? Chiefly because they pay for themselves pretty quick by turning the heat up or down automatically, thus saving us some energy costs. Yes, I could do it manually, like we did back in the old days. When we didn't have TV remotes, and had to hike fifty miles to school each day through the snow, uphill both ways, fighting off cave bears and sabertooth lions and all ...

So I found a neat toy, the Nest, which was created by the guys who gave us the iPod. Spendy, but let's face it, I got an iPad when I could have gotten a Nook or a Kindle a lot cheaper. I'm a Mac guy to the core.

The Nest is simple to operate: turn it up, turn it down. It learns your patterns and programs itself, though you can override it manually, and has all the bells and whistles, including an app you can put on your table or phone to change it via wi-fi from your easy chair or halfway around the world. Has a sensor that sees you coming and lights it up when you check it. 

Took about fifteen minutes to install, another ten to download the software updates and set it up. I haven't gotten online to get the app yet, no hurry, I just wanted heat, since it's supposed to get chilly tonight.

Onward and upward ...

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