Tip & How-To about Heating & Cooling
You have a thermostat problem or you want one of those fancy new digital programmable thermostats and wonder if you can replace it yourself or if you need to have the HVAC Guy come and do it for you. The good news is that it really is not all that hard. With a bit of guidance you can easily do the job yourself. Here are some pointers that will help you to get the job done.
One of the most important things that you need to do is to make sure that you get the right thermostat for the system that you have. Find out what voltage your system is before you got to get a thermostat. Also know whether your system is a heat only or a heating and air conditioning system. If your system is a heat pump system then you need to know that also. Hybrid systems that use both the heat pump and a fossil fuel heater are much harder but that can be handled if you know it up front and plan accordingly.
Taking note of all of this information you can now go shopping for you new thermostat.
There are many choices to chose from and you usually will want to be in the mid price range. That will get you a good quality thermostat for a great price. If you are vision impaired you may want to look for a digital unit that has a back light. These make seeing the numbers much easier.
Once you find the thermostat that you want make sure to read all of the instructions that come with it. Reading these instructions will save you a lot of time and make your life a lot easier. Mark all the wires with the letter of the terminal that you removed the wire from. You will reinstall the wire under the same letter terminal on the new thermostat.
However before you remove any of the wires make sure that you turn off the power to your heating unit or air conditioner first. If you have both then it would be a good idea to kill the power to both to make sure you have the low voltage all dead. The wires to the thermostat are 24V AC usually and that will not hurt you but you could burn up a transformer if you are not careful.
Carefully remove and mark all the wires, and remove the old thermostat. Securely fasten the new thermostat to the wall and reconnect the wires to the new thermostat, if you are installing a programmable thermostat you may want to pre-program it before placing it on the wall. By inserting the batteries into the thermostat most of them will let you program them in your hands rather then trying to look at it on the wall.
That’s really all there is to changing your thermostat. If you can follow some simple instructions telling you how to read some letters and match wires than you can change your own thermostat.
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