Toronto-based smart thermostat company ecobee has introduced a new feature to help users save money on electricity.
Dubbed ‘Peak Relief,’ the feature tries to save customers money by running heating and cooling off of peak hours.
Currently, the feature only works for customers on Time of Use rates — rates that increase during the day’s peak hours. Additionally, ecobee is currently piloting the in Ontario, California and Arizona. If live outside of those places, you can sign up for ecobee to notify you when it’s available in your area.
Peak Relief takes a number of factors into account in order to heat or cool your home efficiently. It considers things like electricity rates, your comfort preferences, your home’s energy efficiency and the local weather. It then runs your heating and cooling before peak times to avoid extra charges and keep the right temperature during peak hours.
Furthermore, by not running during peak hours, ecobee helps reduce strain on a community’s electricity grid.
Customers in select areas can test out the feature. To enable it, navigate to Peak Relief in the main menu, under Comfort Settings. Furthermore, customers can choose how much they save. Customer can choose to have ecobee stick to comfort preferences, or they can allow ecobee to depart from those settings slightly during peak hours.
You’ll know when Peak Relief is running by glancing at the app or at the thermostat. Both will display an icon indicating Peak Relief is in effect.
Finally, to take advantage of the feature, customers need an iOS device and either an ecobee 3, 3 lite or ecobee 4 smart thermostat. Additionally, Peak Relief requires customers to have an electric heating and/or cooling system.