|Average Customer Review: ( 82 customer reviews )
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38 of 40 found the following review helpful:
Great product. Definately ready for prime time!! Aug 11, 2008
Before I bought this product, I was kind of hesitant because of the not so good reviews but I decided to go ahead and give it a try.
After trying it, I am more inclined to think that most of the negative reviews are because the reviewers did not know how to operate the device.
For example, some complained about the temprature override requiring you to set an ending time. In fact the unit allows you to set either a temprary hold until a certain time, or a permanant hold which will take effect indefinately or a vacation hold. Yes, it will require an extra click but it is a useful feature which is better than forgetting your system on and leaving.
You also do have control over the fan. Some other reviewer complained that the fan would go on and off during the night. When you program the time periods, you do have control over the fan mode. You can set it to on, auto (which turns on only when the compressor is running) and refresh which is the same as auto but also turns the fan on if the system is idle for more than an hour to keep the air fresh.
Some complained about the fan turning on without the compressor.. Sounds to me like the recircuilation mode. This mode runs only if the system is idle for an hour and it lets the fan run for 10 , 15 or 20 minutes to bring fresh air. This was quite helpful when I set my temprature to 85 and the air used to be not so fresh by the time I got home because the ac never had to work. With this feature the air is fresh again by the time I got home. I believe this saves more energy than if i kept the temprature at 80 just to maintain freshness.
On the negative side, installation did not go as smooth for me. The manual mentions some labels that you are supposed to find on the old unit which were labeled differently on my old white-rodgers. There was an o/b unit on the old and there was an "o" as well as a "b" on the new. With trial and error, i connected it to "o" and it worked. The manual mentions removing the jumper in case of a 5 wire connection. That jumper is important if you want the system to automatically switch over to using the furnace if the heat pump cannot keep up with the temprature. If you don't connect the jumper, the heat pump will work and you have to set it to emergency heat to use the furnace if you need to.
One of the reviewers mentioned, you need to connect the wire to W1 and not W2 if you have a one stage system. You should not need to do that if you have your system type set correctly. I had a heat pump and it works fine when connected to W2. Also make sure your furnace type is set correctly (Electric or Gas).
After you install the system, make sure you test both heating and cooling functions to avoid unpleasant surprises next season. ALSO, if you have a heat pump, make sure it is the heat pump that is running normally and NOT the furnace! If somehow you get the furnace to run all the time, you will get a HUGE electric bill. The compressor on the heat pump takes a lot of current to start. So if you see your lights flicker when the heat starts, that is a sign that the heat pump is starting and not the electric furnace. Also, the air from a heat pump is not super warm, it should be about body temprature compared to the toasty air from an electric furnace. Also if the heat pump is working, the air coming out of the fan of the outside unit will be cooler than the surrounding air. These guidelines applies to any thermostat and not just this one.
Things that I noticed about heat pumps that i found confusing are: 1. If you start the heat pump then stop it, then start it again shortly, it might take a little bit of time to start to protect the unit. This can be particularly confusing when testing a thermostat and can lead you to believe that your connections are wrong even though if you wait for 5 minutess or so, everything will work as it should. 2. Heat pumps can freeze and they tend to reverse their cycles to defrost. You can tell if it is defrosting if you feel warm air (steam) coming out of it.
The other thing that I did not like is the auto recovery. It means that when you set the A/C to 75 at 6pm, the system will start running earlier to make sure it reaches 75 degrees by 6pm. The manual did not mention how early. Calling the customer service, they mentioned it will start running 30 minutes before the time period which made sense to me. The only way to get around that if you don't like the feature is to adjust your times. There is not a disable option.
The interface is not intuitive but it is not hard to learn. It takes about 5 minutes to get the hang of it after that it is just as easy to use as the old thermostat.
BTW, I do like the red/blue backlights.
10 of 10 found the following review helpful:
Won't remember it's programmed for a heat pump Mar 31, 2009
By R. Sellers
I bought two of these over a year ago. Its been a disaster. I exchanged both units three times (for a grand total of six new thermostats) and all do the same thing eventually:
I have an electric heat pump. I set its programming for an electric heat pump (under Menu->System). Everything's will go well for awhile, but then it will MAGICALLY RESET ITSELF TO "CONVENTIONAL GAS&OIL". The result is it runs the emergency heating coils all the time, which increases my electric bill from $100 to $200 or more. The only way I know is if my bill is sky high, or as I've learned, to check it every so often.
I've changed the batteries, checked the wiring at the device and the furnace, read the nearly worthless manual cover-to-cover, and called tech support. No help anywhere. I paid $90 each for these at Lowes and now I'm out $180 for the thermostats and around $300 in additional heating bills.
If anybody has any clue to why they do this I'd be thrilled to hear it. Otherwise AVOID THESE THINGS LIKE THE PLAGUE.
9 of 9 found the following review helpful:
WATCH YOUR TERMINALS! Jan 24, 2009
While the product itself is nice, the installation was less so. I had the hardest time getting this thermostat to turn my heat on. My heat would only come on if I plugged the white wire into the W2 slot.
After a few long and fruitless calls to customer support, I started scouring the internet, and found that this was a common problem. The solution to my woes, though, was to be found here on Amazon: As one other reviewer below mentioned, the proper W1 terminal is on the right hand side of the base, not the left - where the manual indicates it to be (and where there's an unlabeled terminal above the W2 termina).
So yeah. W1 is on the right.
11 of 12 found the following review helpful:
Most reviews don't do it justice Oct 04, 2010
There are enough reviews here so normally it wouldn't be necessary another one.
However I don't think the reviews are doing it justice because people can not figure out how it works.
It is true that the manual is very confusing and bad leaving out whole major matters all together.
Here is how I see it:
I have a simple system with two units of A/C & Heating (gas), one upstairs, the other downstairs.
It was not more complicated than I thought it should be and if you follow the instructions it should work.
It comes even with labels for the old wires.
If you are not electrically inclined, or don't easily follow written instructions, I would recommend calling a specialist.
-Negative: the provided labels are not that good and some came off while mingling with the wires.
This is the main complain I see from people, as they don't seem to understand the manual if they read it.
If anything needs a manual, usually it means that that machine is not intuitive enough, and this thermostat needs a manual, and a BETTER one that is.
Here are some things I learned:
- The manual is indeed confusing, BUT it will point you in the right direction, and once you start messing with the unit you should figure out how it works. However there are some things that are not covered at all in the manual, so that is a problem.
- The back-light does not stay on, and that is I think the most negative issue I found with the unit. It should allow you to change it in system settings to stay on longer (30 sec?) or permanent. As some other reviewers noticed, it stays on only a few seconds.
What I do like, is that the back light is blue when the system cools and becomes red when the heat is running.
Too bad one can not see it for more than a few seconds.
The display is hard to read in low light unless the back-light is on. The only way to turn on the back-light is to touch the screen. That would be fine, if by touching the screen the back-light would come on and you could just read the actual temperature.
HOWEVER, there are 2 things that will happen:
a.) If you touch the display in the center where the temp reading is, the system enters the temperature override menu so it will show you the programmed temperature not the actual one. To get out of there you can wait a few seconds until the system goes to the normal display by itself, but by then the back-light will turn off again (he... he...). Or you will most likely hit Enter, as seems a better choice than Menu, but end up in the temp hold menu, so you push up/down a few times until Cancel Temp Hold appears, hit Enter and finally you see the actual temp reading. Or you can go against your intuition, hit Menu, then Enter, and you go back to the main screen.
b.) If you touch the display anywhere else, the system enters immediately the Menu allowing you to change settings. You have to hit Enter to accept those settings and go back to the actual temp reading.
I hope the design engineers at Hunter are NOT using these systems at their homes, because if they were, that meant they would be a bunch of morons, otherwise they would see the irony in making you touch the display to turn on the light so you can see, and make you push at least 2 other buttons to actually get to the "normal" default screen.
- People don't seem to understand automatic switching from heating to cooling. If in the summer you want to set your temp very high such as the A/C does not turn on, people complained that the heating turns on inadvertently, and the other way around, in the winter people wanted the heat off during the day, so they set it very low, and the air conditioning turned on. The heat and the cold can be set completely independently from each other to whatever you wanted. The "Auto Season Span" setting only sets a MINIMUM window between heating and cooling points.
In example, you can program during day the cooling at 95F and heating at 45F, and the system will only turn on at those extremes, which means is going to stay off mostly.
- When programing, you can program any days of the week in the same time, so you don't have to spend hours going through each day as some complained here. When you enter the Programming mode, just touch the days of the week you want to program, and a check mark is put next to each one that you touch. Touch again and the check mark is removed. When you program all that have the check mark are saved in the same time.
I like that feature as it is easy to use, IF you figure it out since the manual doesn't tell you about it, and I just noticed it while I was trying to go to a different day.
- A big source of troubles and confusion is that nowhere in the manual is any info regarding the main system setting: Auto - Cooling - Heating - Off.
Of course, experimenting I found that once you push Menu, if you touch the flame or snow flake, it will pull up the menu that lets you set this main mode. I was almost at the point to remove the unit from the wall and return it to the store as it would not switch to heat, but I messed with it until I found this setting.
This thermostat would give a much higher satisfaction and score much higher if 2 things were to be addressed:
1. The manual: make sure you cover all the aspects and settings, and although this is a fairly complicated system, I am sure one can write at least a complete and decent manual.
2. The light issue that virtually everyone complains about. Give us the option to turn it on permanently.
If that is not an option, at least make it so when one touches the screen the light comes on WITHOUT changing anything. Then have a Temperature Override button in a corner that one can use to access the override controls, and let people push the Menu button if they want to access the menu.
Installation - 5
Appearance - 5
Features available - 5 (yes it does have all the features one would want)
Functionality (easy of use) - 2 (but of course one can not use the features unless figures them out without/despite the manual)
Instructions - 1
Value for money - 5
Total 3.8 points, so it rounds to 4.0
_________Follow up note, Feb 2012____________
I noticed a weird thing happening.
The unit would start the A/C or the Heating for about 2-3 seconds and then it would stop.
One or two seconds later, it would start again, then it would stop within seconds.
It would keep cycling like this 5-10 times and then finally would work normal.
I believe that this has been happening from the very beginning.
Cycling the A/C unit on and off so fast will definitely result in damage to the motor/compressor and the starting circuits.
Also, in time, the idiotic implementation of the software with such backward way to turn on the display and change the settings, has become extremely frustrating.
I disabled eventually all the programs, and I use them in simple heating or cooling mode, therefore now I am asking myself why I had to pay for both units so much $ if I could have bought a controller with $20 that would basically do exactly the same.
I can not even see the room temperature during the day (too much light) or at night (too dark in the room) without walking to the unit and pushing a couple buttons.
If I could I would take definitely 2-3 stars from rating.
This should be a 1 or 2 stars at the best.
4 of 4 found the following review helpful:
Good features but watch out for manual error Oct 23, 2008
By L. Chang
I bought this thermostat at Menards. It was not too hard replacing the old thermostat following the manual. It has a lot of nice features. Installed it a month ago. Everything worked great until the cold weather started this week. It does not start the heater. The screen shows heater running but actually not. Removed the unit and double checked the wiring but still without any clue. Finally talked to the tech support after 20 minutes waiting on the phone. The technician asked a few questions and then told me that the jumper should be connected between RC and RH, not as specified in the user manual to connect between W2 and E for a heat pump system. It is a mis-print. Fixed the wiring and it's working fine again. Really like its features so I still give it a four-star rating.
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