My house has 22 vent registers across two floors. I have a single HVAC system, operated with an Ecobee thermostat. I have 8 Ecobee room sensors throughout the house. This time of year, a couple rooms stay colder than the rest, and a couple get warmer than the rest, making some rooms more or less comfortable than others. I was considering smart vents as a way to help balance the temperature throughout the house. I am thinking about installing 15 smart vents (bedrooms, family room, kitchen, home office), and leaving 7 vents as “dumb” (hallways, bathrooms, laundry room).
I have priced Keen and Flair, and the current pricing for my house is (USD):
Flair: 1184 (includes one Puck)
If I was shopping on price alone, Flair is the clear winner. But if I am spending this much money, I am more concerned with system longevity and compatibility. The way I see it, I have several options:
- Use Flair, and connect it “cloud-to-cloud” to Ecobee, completely bypassing SmartThings.
- Use Flair, and connect it “cloud-to-cloud” with SmartThings, and use a SmartApp.
- Use Keen, and connect them directly to SmartThings, and use a SmartApp.
- If I use Flair, I am reliant on their cloud service remaining operational. If it goes down for any reason, my Ecobee or SmartThings will not be able to communicate with the vents. The likelihood of this is probably low right now, but it could change in the future.
- If I use Flair directly with Ecobee, I eliminate any SmartThings complications that may or may not materialize, including the future phase-out and replacement of Groovy.
- Flair vents require the use of a Puck as the gateway between the vents and the internet.
- If my house ends up being too large for all of the Flair vents to reach one Puck, I may need to purchase an additional Puck, making the cost difference with Keen much smaller.
- If I use Keen, I can connect the devices directly to the SmartThings hub. If I change hubs in the future, it is likely that another hub will support Zigbee and I can continue to utilize their vents, irregardless of Keen’s future as a company.
- Keen vents can use other powered Zigbee devices (such as a Peanut Plug) as a repeater, extending their distance from the hub.
- Flair vents are either 100% open, or closed. Keen vents can be set to 0%, 25%, 50%, 75%, or 100% open.
Even though they are a bit more expensive, the Keen vents seem to be a better solution overall. Am I thinking about this correctly? Did I overlook something? Is Flair really better for some reason? What else?
All feedback is a gift and appreciated!
UPDATE: all of my registers are 4x10 and 4x12, so sizing is not an issue between the brands.