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Product Review and Buyer's Guide: Ecobee3 Smarter Wi-Fi Thermostat

Update: This review was updated to include information from Ecobee.

A smart thermostat is a safe bet when figuring out if your home needs to be smarter. With several reliable systems to choose from, though, finding the right one can be difficult. This is our product review and buyer’s guide for the Ecobee3 Smarter Wi-Fi Thermostat.

The second generation Ecobee3 thermostat has a pretty basic look: a black square with rounded corners and a 3.5-inch LED display. The included remote sensor is a smaller white square, also with rounded corners.

Installation can be tricky with this unit. The Ecobee3 uses the "C" wire to power itself. For thermostats without a "C" wire, a power extender kit is included with the unit. Ecobee says it should take no more than 45 minutes to self-install. They have a link on their website that gives a quote for professional installation as well. Once the new thermostat is on the wall, setting it up is a breeze.

The Ecobee3 can be set on a heating/cooling schedule as well as a vacation schedule. The thermostat can be toggled between "Home" and "Away" modes. When in "Away" the thermostat won’t kick on, but if the thermostat or sensors detect motion, the setting will be overridden. These settings can be changed from the iOS and Android app or from a computer. It can be voice controlled by Siri with Apple’s HomeKit or Alexa with Amazon’s Echo.

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