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It’s a proven fact that setting your thermostat back about 5 degrees when you sleep or are away from your home will save you money. 5% to be exact. So you might have thought about purchasing a programmable thermostat where you can set it to automatically turn the furnace up and down accordingly. For some, this works well as long as your schedule is exactly the same every day.

Some of us though have schedules that are different week to week or day to day so turning down the thermostat when we are gone is something we probably don’t do or forget to do. Plus, if we are not sure when we will arrive back home, we walk into a cold home and then must manually turn up the thermostat. Not the best situation.

A wonderful thermostat technology is now available to overcome the shortfalls of typical programmable thermostats. It’s called geofencing. Here’s how it works.

Instead of having to program the thermostat with set times and days, a geofencing thermostat automatically knows if you are home or away. It knows this by way of your iOS or Android cell phone using geofencing technology. The thermostat is connected to your Wi-Fi and then you register your phone with the app, adjust a few preferences and your done. The app assumes that if your cell phone is near, so are you and vice versa. You can add all your family members cell phones that reside at your home and the thermostat will adjust itself by those as well so when the last person leaves the heat goes down. When the first person returns, the heat goes up.

You can adjust the geofence too. The thermostat is not aware of your location, just that you crossed the geofence boundary. Picture this as a circle on a map around your home. You can make the circle as large or small as you want. When you or any phone you have registered enters or leaves that circle, the thermostat will know what to do. The app also gives you plain-English alerts when you need a new air filter or other maintenance.