Keen Vents Update (econet too)

So I have had my 5 keen vents for a couple of months now, and I wanted to update my other posts.

Bottom line, they are just not ready for prime time. I have 5 vents.

Currently 1 of them is completely non-functional. The 4x10 unit. It started reporting red (stuck, needs power cycle) in ST a couple of weeks ago. At first I could pop out the battery and pop it back in and it would come back, but it won’t even do that. Result: I took the batteries out and left it in the open position. It is now a very expensive regular vent. All of the units get ‘stuck’ in this way occasionally, this is the first one to be irreparable.

Another vent has had multiple issues. First the glue that holds the magnets on, which in turn hold on the grill melted off. I am sure this is because this is one of my more powerful vents in terms of flow and heat. So the grill won’t go on this unit anymore. Second, the whole insides of the unit popped out of the housing. At first I thought it had stripped the screw holes out of the wall, but they are fine, instead the whole inside just pops out of the frame. It does this every time now that it tries to close the vent with the HVAC on.

All five of the units are unbelievably unreliable in terms of maintaining a connection. I am going to be generous here and say they lose connectivity once a week. In fact its multiple times a week, not good. This is compounded by the fact that there is a design flaw whereby you have to unscrew the whole unit to access the reset button. For a while I would go around a couple of times a week and unscrew both screws and reset the unit, put it back, re connect it to ST, but I have given up.

The bottom line is that I have popped the batteries on all 5 units now, and have 5 expensive vent covers. I hope one day they get there, but today, don’t bother. It would be different if this was a problem with 1 or 2 of my units, but sadly, they all are really bad and frustrating.

So, as promised, I need to contrast this with the 5 Econet 100 units. They are z-wave instead of zigbee. They don’t look nearly as nice, they don’t feel as well made, and they don’t have the shark tank behind them. What they have done, is work fairly flawlessly for over a year now. I have them upstairs in my critical vents and they just work. They close when they are supposed to, they open when they are supposed to, they also actually prevent flow. When I first got the Keen Vents they felt so solid and great, I bad mouthed the Econet vents a little bit, what a mistake. I take it all back and plan to try out the Econet 200s.


Sorry for your trouble, but I’ve had exactly the opposite experience. My EcoNets worked fine during cooling season, but didn’t take long into heating season before they failed. The actuator seems to poop out on them and they no longer open/close reliably. Removing the actuator and moving the vents by hand reveals no “rough” spots or resistance - they open and close smoothly. My Keens by contrast, “just work.” Admittedly, I haven’t owned them as long as the EcoNets, but they’ve been operating beyond the time it took the EcoNets to fail during heating season.

The Keens have a 2 year warranty, so you don’t have to just accept them as expensive paperweights. Perhaps @GreggKeenHome has a suggestion as well?

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I was so excited when I got the Keen’s, so yeah, its been a letdown. I just find it hard to believe that I would get 5 lemons, but I guess anything is possible. I have the Econets all upstairs where the pressure is not high and they don’t get very hot. he Keen vents are downstairs where the vents pump it out. Ive seen the temp gauge on the Keens at 185. That being said, I have 150 “things” in my system, probably 50 zigbee ‘things’ and the Keen vents are the only ones that don’t stay connected. Hopefully @GreggKeenHome has some ideas for me.

I just saw CNET’s updated review on the Keen Smart Vent and also this post which I am surprised by both. I only have one vent but I haven’t had any issues at all. Connectivity has been great, and I haven’t had any issues with the grille coming off.

The only thing I worry about that they mention in the review is ceiling installations being hazardous. The vent I have is installed in my bedroom directly above me, so now I am afraid of it coming down on me.

Has anyone had one of their vents fall from the ceiling?

Wow that CNET review really turned me off on the Keens. Most my vents are ceiling vents and with heating/cooling cycles the adhesive will wear out.

The losing connectivity is a concern if multiple vents get stuck closed it can cause back pressure to the Furnace. Even a little upset can cause issues with overheating, or if cooling freezing over. I want to like the idea of smart vents, but I also don’t want to have a furnace go out or cause leakage in the system.