Programmable Thermostats

Reviews of digital programmable thermostats

Hunter 44550

Hunter 44550 Auto Save 7 Day Programmable Thermostat

Click here to find the best price on Amazon for the Hunter 44550

List of Specifications:

  • 7 Day programming and 4 periods per day
  • Swing control
  • ‘Home Today’ / Temporary hold
  • Vacation mode
  • Energy usage monitor
  • ENERGY STAR Compliant INDIGLO Backlit Display
  • Smart recovery (adaptive intelligent recovery)
  • Filter warning and 2 stage battery warning
  • Auto change-over
  • Can cycle fan
  • Basic keyboard lockout
  • One touch backlight
  • Front loading batteries (so you don’t have to take the unit off the wall to replace batteries)
  • Armchair programming
  • Energy Star approved
  • Display in Fahrenheit or Celsius / 12 hour or 24 hour
  • 1 year warranty
  • Price $40 (use the link above to check the latest price on Amazon)

Compatibility:

  • Central air, heating only, cooling only, single stage heat pumps, 2 wire hydronics, gas
  • 1 stage heating and 1 stage cooling

Review

The Hunter 44550 Auto Save 7 Day Programmable Thermostat has the distinction of being the cheapest Energy Star approved 7 day programmable thermostat on the market. The best price for the Hunter 44550 is about $40 from Amazon.com.

You might be suspicious of a device that promises so much that is so cheap but the Hunter 44550 is the genuine article.

The Hunter 44550 gives the user a program slot for each day of the week and within each day 4 different periods of heating/cooling – morning, afternoon, evening and night. The thermostat itself is accurate and reliable and if Energy Star recommended settings are adhered to the Hunter 44550 is capable of saving the home owner up to 30% on annual heating and cooling bills.

The Hunter 44550 despite its cheap price is not bereft of useful functions. It has a temporary hold button to quickly suspend the settings if you decide to have a day off work or stay up late watching TV. And if you go on holiday, the Hunter 44550 can be set to vacation mode so the house is protected while you are away without costing you much money.

The Hunter 44550 also has smart response or adaptive intelligent recovery which learns the optimum times needed to pre-heat or pre-cool a room prior to the start of a programmed period.

Furthermore the thermostat has seasonal auto change-over that detects the onset of a new season and switches automatically between heating and cooling to maintain your home comfort.

The Hunter 44550 also has swing control which allows the user to set up a range around the set point within which the thermostat does not activate the heating or cooling systems. This protects the air-con, furnace etc. from constantly short cycling with small  fluctuations in room temperature and helps extend the life of HVAC parts.

There is also a filter change warning and a 2 stage battery change warning. The digital display has an environmentally friendly INDIGLO backlight and programming is straight forward.

Drawbacks

The most noticeable drawback of the Hunter 44550 Auto Save 7 Day Programmable Thermostat is that it can only regulate single stage heating and cooling systems and only single stage heat pumps. Since most heat pumps have more than one stage this limits the thermostat’s compatibility.

Although the thermostat claims it has a keyboard lockout, it is not an alpha-numeric code that protects the device but rather a fixed combination of flicking 2 switches.

Amazon Reviews

89 people have reviewed the Hunter 44550 Auto Save and it has received 61 five star ratings and only 4 one star ratings. Common themes include the ease of installation (but the necessity to read the instruction manual), the usefulness of the ‘home today’ button that automatically changes to the warmest/coolest setting and the fact that for only $40 you get a thermostat with many functions more commonly associated with more expensive thermostats.

Another opinion that was voiced on a number of reviews was the usefulness of the Energy Usage Monitor that lets you keep track of how much you are spending on heating and cooling.

One reviewer noted that it was 4 years before he needed to change the batteries. And one woman mentioned how useful the auto change-over is because where so lives in the Fall it is warm during the day but chilly at nights.

Keynote Quote:

“Keeps you comfortable, saves you money, easy to install and program and virtually hands free operation;  need I say more! Well yes one more thing it costs less than $50.00 which you will save in energy costs in about two months.”

– Tommy Tucker

Fri, January 7 2011 » Hunter, Under $50

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