Wondering how to get a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters? Luckily, it’s likely easier than you think. If you have old baseboard thermostats and crave the control of a smart electric heating system, there’s no need to replace your baseboard heaters or for complex rewiring. A smart thermostat replacement does the trick. All you need is to find a compatible WiFi thermostat for electric baseboard heaters and to ensure proper installation.
Since all thermostats do not work with all heating systems, finding a compatible smart thermostat for electric heating is a must. High voltage thermostats control electric heating, which operate very differently than low voltages thermostats used with central HVAC systems.
Whether you choose to install your smart thermostat yourself or to use a professional, with a compatible baseboard heater thermostat replacement, the process should be a breeze.
We have all the ‘how to’ details below, along with 10 customer reasons for installing a smart thermostat for electric baseboard heaters.
Do Smart Thermostats Work with Baseboard Heaters?
Yes, there are smart thermostats that work with electric baseboard heaters. However, not all smart thermostats do. So, it’s important to choose a smart upgrade that’s compatible with your home. For baseboard heaters, you’ll need a line voltage smart thermostat. Baseboard heaters are electric. So, they need a 120 volt or 240 volt thermostat. This is known as a high or line voltage thermostat. By comparison, central heating systems like a gas furnace or hot water boiler are controlled by a 12 volt or 24 volt low voltage thermostat.
There are a few ways to check if you have a low vs high voltage thermostat. You could consider how you heat your home, read the label on your thermostat, and check the number and thickness of your thermostat’s wires. Line voltage thermostats control electric heating systems, have a capacity of 240 or 120 volts of electricity, and have a smaller number of thick wires.
If you’re looking for a smart high voltage thermostat, Mysa Smart Thermostats are an option.
Can Nest/Ecobee be Used With Baseboard Heaters?
No, Nest and Ecobee smart thermostats do not work with electric baseboard heaters. Most electricians, HVAC professionals, and thermostat manufacturers advise against installing ecobee or Nest for baseboard heaters. Luckily, there are smart thermostats for baseboard heaters on the market.
Nest and ecobee are low voltage thermostats designed to control central heating systems. So, they’re not designed to control the higher 120V/240V electrical load needed for electric baseboard heaters.
Technically, it’s possible to add an external relay to use Nest or ecobee with baseboard heaters. But, this is not recommended. It’s a complicated workaround that has to be done by an experienced professional, and even then it can be dangerous and doesn’t work seamlessly. Using Nest/ecobee for electric heat means extra costs, a loss of smart features, and no energy insights.
So, it’s recommended to instead use a high voltage smart thermostat, which has been specifically designed for electric baseboard heaters.
How to Get a Smart Thermostat for Baseboard Heaters
If you have electric baseboard heating, and are looking for a smart upgrade, learning ‘how to’ is easy. All you have to do is find the right electric baseboard smart thermostat for you, and consider set-up.
What Kind of Thermostat Do I Need for Baseboard Heaters?
When shopping for a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters, there are a few things to consider:
Confirm compatibility. This isn’t just about knowing that you need a smart line voltage thermostat for baseboard heaters. You’ll also have to think about max wattage, connectivity, and the number of wires needed for any smart thermostat you’re considering. For example, Mysa’s Smart Thermostat for Electric Baseboard Heaters connects directly to WiFi, requires at least 4 gang box wires, and can handle a max of 3,800 watts. If you have a 2 wire line voltage thermostat (i.e. there are only two wires total in your gang box), check out Sinope. Most smart thermostats have compatibility information or an interactive quiz on their website, so be sure to check that out before purchasing.
Consider smart features included in each smart thermostat’s app. All thermostat apps will not have every possible feature, and how features work can be different for each brand. So, review this information to make sure you’re getting the best thermostat for you. For example, if you want to see how much energy you’re using and saving, you’ll need a smart thermostat with Energy Charting. Or maybe Scheduling is important to you, so you’ll choose a smart thermostat with the best scheduling feature.
Learn about smart home integrations. This way, you know that your smart thermostat will be compatible with your favourite smart home assistant. For example, if you have Alexa smart speakers throughout your home, you’ll want a smart thermostat that’s compatible with Alexa. The same could be said for Google Home and Apple HomeKit.
Compare competition on basics like pricing, return policy, and customer reviews. In addition to basic returns, some smart thermostats come with an Energy Saving Guarantee. So, keep an eye out for that when looking for a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters.
Look for extras that will make life even easier. For example, homes with electric heating can have multiple heating and cooling sources. This is why Mysa has products for electric baseboard heaters, in-floor heating, and mini split heat pumps that can all be controlled in the same app.
How to Replace a Baseboard Heater Thermostat?
The next step in getting a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters is learning how to install it. Remember that these thermostats are high voltage, so proper safety precautions are a must. If you’re not comfortable with electrical wiring or if at any point you’re uncertain of what to do, please consult a professional. Please also follow local electrical codes and regulations and have installation performed by a qualified HVAC professional where required.
Here’s a brief overview of how to install a baseboard thermostat (note that these guidelines are for electric baseboard thermostats with 4 or more wires):
Step 1: Take proper safety precautions — turn off power to your thermostat & baseboard heaters. Locate the circuit breaker for your electric heaters and thermostat, and turn it off.
Make sure to check both your electric heater and thermostat to ensure that no power is flowing to either of them. Try adjusting your thermostat or turning the heat all the way up to see if your heater responds. It’s also a good idea to use a voltage meter to be extra sure that no power is flowing in the wires.
Step 2: Remove the faceplate of your old electric baseboard heater thermostat. With a little bit of wiggling and a gentle pull, your thermostat’s faceplate should pop right off. If it doesn’t then don’t force it; there might be a screw that you need to remove or a toggle that you need to slide first.
Step 3: Disconnect your old thermostat’s backplate. Simply unscrew your existing backplate and gently lift it away from the wall.
Step 4: Take a photo of your wiring. Before moving on, take a photo of your old thermostat’s wiring set-up, so you have a reference point. You should see grouped bundles of red, black, and/or white wires attached by wire nuts.
Pro tip: If the wires on your old thermostat are labeled to show L1 and L2, label the group of wires attached to each from the gang box with electrical tape before moving to the next step.
Step 5: Connect the Wiring. Learning how to wire an electric baseboard heater thermostat is the trickiest part of installation, since there are many different variables with wiring. At Mysa, we have online installation guides and videos to help you with proper wiring and set-up, as well as a Customer Experience team to answer any questions.
If you’re not sure, you should not attempt to wire your new smart thermostat for baseboard heaters and should consult a professional HVAC technician.
Step 6: Attach the Backplate: Once everything is wired correctly, use a level and the holes in your new thermostat’s backplate as a guide to mark screw placement. Securely fix the backplate to the wall using the supplied screws and fixings.
Pro tip: It’s best to use a manual screwdriver to avoid possible damage to the backplate, if using a power drill make sure to use the lowest possible setting.
Step 7: Attach the faceplate. Attach the thermostat’s faceplate by lining it up with the backplate and sliding it into place. You may have to switch a toggle or use a provided screw to fully secure the faceplate.
Step 8: Turn power back on. Go back to your circuit breaker and turn on the power to your heater and electric baseboard thermostat. If your faceplate powers on, it means everything should be wired correctly.
Step 9: Connect & pair your thermostat. Once everything is powered on, you’ll need to connect your thermostat to WiFi and pair it to your phone. Each smart thermostat app should include a guide to help with this process.
Note that most smart products require a 2.4Ghz WiFi connection. If this is not available, you may have to contact your internet provider for assistance in splitting your network.
Once everything is connected, try adjusting your thermostat from your phone to ensure that it’s working properly. Then, you can start setting up energy-saving features.
Can You Install a Smart Thermostat Yourself?
This can depend. While it is possible to install a smart thermostat yourself, you'll have to consider your comfort level with electric wiring. If you have zero experience with electrical wiring, calling an electrician might be a wise choice. But if you can handle the basics, you may have the skills to install a smart thermostat.
Important Note: Regardless, remember to take proper safety precautions and to follow local electrical codes and regulations. Please have installation performed by a qualified HVAC professional where required by state/provincial regulations.
10 Reasons to Get a Smart Thermostat for Baseboard Heaters (According to Customers):
If you’re still unsure if a smart thermostat is right for you, here are 10 reasons to get a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters:
1) Better Comfort
First and foremost, with a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters you’ll be more comfortable at home, since you have complete control of when and where you heat your home.
“Our comfort level in the house is so much better with consistent heat wherever and whenever we need it. The ability to customize the heating in different areas at different times is amazing. Highly recommend Mysa!!” - William M.
No more worries about wasting energy and money, smart thermostats make it easy to control and schedule heating in each room. This way, you’re always perfectly cozy.
2) Financial Savings
For some homeowners, the most important reason for upgrading to a smart device is the financial savings. Using smart thermostats for baseboard heaters, homeowners can save up to 26% on their monthly electricity bill.
“I've had my 3 Mysa's installed for about a month now and am seeing savings of about 20-30% vs the prior period and vs the same time last year. I love that I can get data in graphs in near real time about how my baseboard heaters are being used, the ambient temperature and humidity.” - Kiran P.
Energy saving features like Scheduling, Geofencing, and Energy Charting make it easy to monitor and reduce your energy consumption. This means spending less to heat your home!
3) Remote Thermostat Control
One thing that you’ll get with a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters and no other solution is wireless baseboard heater control, from anywhere. All you need is WiFi connection and you can adjust your thermostat, make schedule changes, monitor energy use, and more from your smartphone. And this can be done from literally anywhere: the office, a coffee shop, or while on vacation.
“Having remote control of our ski condo to bring it to a more comfortable temperature will be an awesome benefit and a electricity cost saver since we can bring it up slowly avoiding the massive draw of power prior to the thermostat picking up the air temp and cycling off.” - John L.
Remote control is a great way to make sure that your home is perfectly comfortable when you arrive, without wasting energy.
4) Easy to Use
Another great benefit of smart thermostats is how easy they are to use! No need to struggle with complicated thermostat manuals, a smart thermostat lets you do everything in seconds using the app. Most smart thermostat apps even have easy-to-follow ‘how to’ guides.
“Mysas are awesome! We love our Mysas!! They're easy to install and so easy to use. We have them in most rooms of our house and are able to 'set it and forget it'. No more waking up to a cold room and having to hop out of bed to turn on the heat. And...the heat turns down/off on our schedule. Love love love our Mysas!” - Nancy J.
It’s so much simpler to make a quick change in the palm of your hand on your smartphone than having to reprogram or constantly adjust an older thermostat. Smart thermostats make life so much easier.
5) Home Style Upgrade
Smart thermostats come in many different shapes and sizes. For example, Mysa thermostats have a sleek, minimalist design that goes with any home style.
“The design is slim and appealing. Installation was very easy and it looks so much better than the old school controllers.” - Leroy D.
If you’re looking to upgrade the old electric heat thermostat on your wall, a smart thermostat could do the trick!
6) Smart Home Integration
Another major benefit of having a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters is being able to integrate your home heating with the rest of your smart home. If you have a smart home speaker or a preferred smart assistant, make sure to choose a compatible smart thermostat. For example, Mysa’s Smart Thermostat for Baseboard Heaters works with Alexa, Google Home, and Apple HomeKit.
Love these!! Purchased 10 for our home we just renovated and absolutely LOVE how well they work alongside Apple HomeKit!! :) Seamless partnership and love how it can go into eco friendly mode. We save so much money this way by being smart with our heat. - Michelle N.
To make life even easier, you can add your smart thermostat to your smart home themes. So, at your next dinner party, your smart assistant can simultaneously turn on lighting in your living room, dining room, and kitchen; adjust room temperature; and turn on your favourite playlist. That’s smart living!
7) Peace of Mind
With smart thermostats, you also always have peace of mind. No more worrying about if you remembered to turn down your thermostat before leaving for the office or vacation. You can monitor your home heating and adjust settings in the app — anytime and from anywhere!
“The peace of mind is priceless. Not only are we now saving money incrementally, we can monitor the temperature at the cottage remotely to ensure our pipes aren’t going to freeze. Mysas are amazing and we will be purchasing 5 more for our remaining zones ASAP! Such a fantastic solution for homes that don’t have the wiring for ‘smart’ systems like the Nest. It’s also amazing watching how much energy we’ve used and can estimate our hydro bill in advance. So easy to use. Highly recommended! Worth every penny.” - Emily F.
Smart thermostat control is also a great way to monitor the temperature of your cabin or at home for your pets.
Scheduling when and where you heat your home is SO easy with a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters. This way, you don’t waste energy when you’re not at home, in each room, or at night. Instead of trying to figure out a complicated programmable thermostat for baseboard heaters, you can set custom schedules in a smart thermostat app or use preset schedules that are made for you.
“Scheduling is very easy. The app has pre-programed schedules that take seconds to add, but you can make your own and it’s not much longer to do. I changed all the thermostats in my house with Mysas.” - Jesse B.
Creating custom schedules that turn down your thermostat when you’re at the office or during the night is a great way to save on your monthly electric bill. Plus, you never have to worry about waking up in a cold or stuffy room — just schedule the perfect settings for your morning routine in the app.
9) Energy Usage Data
Another great benefit to having a smart thermostat for electric baseboard heaters is access to energy usage data. This way, you can track your investment, by seeing how much you’re spending and saving in each room. “Now we are tracking our heating usage throughout the whole house and we can see how much more energy we use when it gets cold out. Thanks for designing a great product. Looking forward to whole house energy charting, so I can easily see at a glance what my house uses to heat as a whole.” - Damon G.
As a smart homeowner, you can use Energy Charting info to make changes to your thermostat schedules or to your home to save even more. For example, if a certain room is using a lot more energy than others, it could be a sign to upgrade insulation or window sealing.
10) Control a Second Property
If you own a cabin or rental properties, being able to control your smart thermostat for baseboard heaters from your phone makes managing a second property so much easier! Plus, it helps control costs too.
“Great, simple product that just works! We have a cabin rental business and bought several of the baseboard heater thermostats to remotely monitor and control temperatures inside our cabins. Having all the info on one page helps us to make sure our guests are staying comfy. It also allows us to remotely adjust the temp in advance of guests arrival and as they leave, resulting in substantial energy savings!” - David B.
For even more control, you could also use Lockout Mode. This feature lets you lock the faceplate of your smart thermostats, so changes can only be made in the app. It’s a great way to control costs of rental properties (or to prevent the kids from cranking the heat on blast!). Such a great benefit of wireless heater control!
Getting Smart Baseboard Heaters is Easy
Can you make baseboard heaters smart? Of course you can! The best thermostat for baseboard heaters is a smart one. Getting a smart thermostat for baseboard heaters is an easy home upgrade that helps you live more comfortably and save. It’s just important to choose the right thermostat for your home (i.e. a smart line voltage programmable thermostat) and to ensure proper set-up . From there, you’re free to take advantage of all the awesome benefits of smart technology. To learn more about smart home heating and cooling, sign up to Mysa’s email list!