British Gas Remote Heating Control – initial impressionsOctober 31, 2012
I’m always a sucker for a new technology, and especially something that will make my life easier. So, when British Gas asked me to try out their Remote Heating Control, I jumped at the chance.
Remote Heating Control allows you to make adjustments to your home’s heating from any Internet-enabled computer or mobile phone. If you have an iOS or Android device there is a handy app, while users of other mobiles can text their instructions instead. The instructions are sent via British Gas to a hub that plugs into your broadband router. That hub updates your thermostat, which then controls the boiler. Clever stuff.
Quite apart from the gadget value of being able to control your heating from anywhere, it’s supposed to save you money. I can’t directly comment on that (I’ve only had it installed for a couple of weeks), but I can see how it would have that effect. If you are of a mind to take tighter control over your heating use, being able to do so on the move means you can switch it off whenever you leave the house.
Sure, you can do that with any other heating system, but if you’re anything like me you will have been in the car for ten minutes before thinking, “Ah! I forgot to turn the heating off!”. Not a problem… get the phone out, and do it. And if you’re coming back late at night? Turn the heating back on as you set off for home. I’ve been doing just this when visiting family members and, over time, it’s bound to lead to savings.
Oddly enough, though, I actually leave the heating on more than I used to. Other than when I explicitly disable it, the thermostat is constantly on. What’s nice is that you can set a schedule on the British Gas website that alters the thermostat throughout the day. Tell it when you wake up, leave the house, get home and go to bed, and what temperature you want at each of those times, and it all just takes care of itself. If you like, you can just “set it and forget it”, and your heating will tick over quite happily.
As I say, I’ve only had Remote Heating Control installed for a couple of weeks, but I think it’s a great piece of technology. I’ll update you as we continue using it and more points come to mind. In the meantime, you can find out more here.