Best Connected HVAC Thermostat System

I just recently purchased a home and would like to incorporate Smartthings or a similar home automation system into my new home. In my previous home I had a 3M Filtrete thermostat and liked it, but would like something a bit more capable. My home has two complete HVAC systems with two thermostats, two A/C systems, and two gas forced air units.

I am open to all options. Though it seems the most popular are Ecobee, Nest, and Honewyell. My question is two fold. Which system is best for integrating into Smartthings? Which system, if any, works best with two full systems? I realize that I will need two thermostats, but I’m curious if there are any systems intelligent enough to allow the two thermostats to communicate with each other and work in conjunction to work most efficiently.

Hey @lassenloop,

I bought a new house with a dual zone system last year. I replaced the dumb Thermo’s with the Honeywell Z-Wave Thermo’s about 6 months ago. It was easy and they have been bullet-proof. I have not used the others so I can’t do a comparison, but that’s the thing with SmartThings. By being integrated into ST, it brings parity to like devices. I find myself not using the interface on the actual device once it’s integrated. So like I said, ST brings parity to the operation of the device.

As far as communication with each other, I don’t think they do that natively. But with SmartThings, you can program pretty much anything you want. I have mine fully implemented with the hello-home functionality. It is turned on, off and set to certain temps depending on what’s going on.

Sorry, maybe not much help but I made my choice because of price and it was fully implemented in ST.


I couldn’t have said it any better than twack. Nests look nice, but I couldn’t justify the cost since I wanted to replace both my thermos. There wasn’t anything significantly differentiating the Nest that I just had to have.

We bought two of these for out two zones:

Works great but note you cannot setup any programs thru SmartThings…yet. I had emailed Ryan in support and they are working on a fix. Other than that I love them. Easy to pair and hookup and much cheaper than Neat.

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Can anyone confirm if the Ecobee zigbee module allows the unit to be controlled via the zigbee interface, or if the module is only for the thermostat to control other items.

I just wanted to chime in and give a warning about NEST thermostats. While most people seem to have had good experiences with them, mine was a very expensive mistake.

To the tune of a $1300 mistake.

I checked the wiring compatibility guide carefully–we were all good.

I connected the Nest following the instructions–it powered on.

But it didn’t actually do anything. It showed the temp, but didn’t make my modern Carrier heat pump work. So I called Nest. They took me through a lengthy process of swapping wires around from one connection to another. Trial, nothing. Trial, Nothing. Etc. Until after one trial, when I turned up the thermostat: POP! above me. The sound of an electrical component shorting out.

Under explicit instructions from Nest tech support, I had fried the control board for my heat pump up in the air handler. $1300 repair bill there.

What thermostat did you end up going with?

I am using nest at two different locations and have no problems with it. One location has heating/cooling, the other electric baseboards. Nset works with all of it and I have not had any problems with it.
The other thermostat that I use is radiothermostat st-30. Its being sold by different brands and can have a zwave, zigbee or wifi usnap modules. Works well, simple to use but requires a c wire.

Can anyone confirm if the Ecobee zigbee module allows the unit to be controlled via the zigbee interface, or if the module is only for the thermostat to control other items.

While the Zigbee module in the Ecobee does use an HA profile, it is either meant to be joined with a Smart Meter system, or become an HA controller itself to control other Zigbee items (their own outlet switches); it is not yet able to be an endpoint and join an existing HA network.

That said, Ecobee/SmartThings are working on an integration via Ecobee’s Public API and are very close to completion.

Ecobee Facebook showing Ecobee working in ST app:

Does the Ecobee public API allow for control via the Zigbee module or the internet? If it’s the internet, there will probably some latency, slowing the time thermostat responds to a change. Not a big deal, but it puts the Ecobee in the same category as the Nest.

I also learned something new about my system. My upstairs system is only a heat pump and not a gas furnace. I’m not sure how that affects my options.

Considering my previous experience with NEST (see up a few posts) I’m very curious how you all determined the actual compatibility of your aftermarket thermostats with your HVAC.

I would LOVE to get a ST controllable thermostat, but I’m really leery of being burned with another $1300 repair bill! But it would be nice to not have to pay an HVAC guy to tell me what will and won’t work.