Having a single, smart thermostat in your home is great - but it can only figure out what to do by reading the temperature in that one location where you've installed it. What about room by room control? Thankfully, many smart heating systems offer a way to do this, and Tado is no exception.
Prior to choosing Tado as our Smart Heating system, I did a bit of research. One of the things on my 'requirements list' was room by room control. A smart thermostat that can only control your heating based on taking the temperature in only one location isn't that smart. After all, especially for those of us living in multi-storey houses, the temperature can be vastly different in different places in your home.
Tado ticked the box here by having their own Smart Radiator Thermostats. Note, this isn't a third party integration - Tado make their own.
With the inclusion of Smart Radiator Thermostats, even those without their own boiler can get smart heating control. If you have shared heating or district heating, but would still like to enjoy smart control over that, then Tado will let you do it using their Radiator Thermostats.
In my case of course, we do have our own boiler. As you'll know from my posts 'Tado Smart Thermostat Unboxing' and 'Tado Installation and Setup', our setup so far includes the Tado Smart Thermostat, the extension kit, and the internet bridge.
The addition of smart radiator thermostats to our home mean we'll get room by room control of our heating. Or at least, we will do when we get to the stage where we've installed it in every room. Just as with smart lighting, it's going to take a little time to get to that 'finished' point.
Using Tado Smart Radiator Thermostats will give us more than just temperature control though. We sort of already have that through the existing 'ordinary' Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRV) we have. By using Tado's, we'll have a system where even if only one room is 'too cold', the boiler will still be fired to ensure that the room can be heated (even if all the other radiators are set by Tado to a 'closed' state). I was able to confirm this with Tado support prior to purchase. Have to say it was a good experience interacting with them.
Our use of Tado for radiator control also means all the other benefits of Smart Heating can be fully realised at a 'per-room' level.
We can also do something with Smart Radiator Thermostats that regular TRVs can't do; per-room schedules. With Tado, we'll be able to set different schedules for different rooms. Got a room you don't use much at certain times of the day? No need to have it heated. This lets you save even more on your heating and be super-efficient.
So, what do you actually get in the box?
Well, first, you of course get the Smart Radiator Thermostat itself. Note that it's just the actual 'head' for the valve. You're not getting the valve itself. If you have radiators that don't have TRVs already, you'll need to acquire and fit these first before you can use Tado's thermostat heads. That's a big job, and is going to involve draining your central heating. Probably best not to get involved in this unless you definitely know what you're doing! Get a professional to sort it for you.
If however you already have TRVs, then fitting the Tado Smart Radiator Thermostat shouldn't be too much trouble, and won't involve draining your central heating (you'll probably be able to do this yourself). The units come in two different orientation versions. One for Vertical mountings, and another for Horizontal mountings
The box also contains a series of adapters that can be used if required. These may be needed for certain types of TRV valve - it's nice that Tado have thought of this.
There's nothing else in the box apart from a small specifications leaflet. All the installation instructions can be accessed via the Tado website, or in the app during setup.
One final point to note - whilst it's a good goal to have TRVs on every radiator in your house, some older boilers may not support doing this. It's why in some houses you'll find certain rooms (like the bathroom) won't have TRVs installed. More modern boilers may be less problematic in this area.
In my next post, I'll go through the installation and setup process, and show you how to get up and running with the Smart Radiator Thermostat.