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Best Smart Thermostats in Dubai. Nest vs Ecobee? We asked the experts.

If you are looking to upgrade your home with energy-saving devices, smart thermostats in Dubai is a smart investment.

The idea is that smart thermostat is really easy to use, and has intelligent features so that we can cut down on DEWA (utility) cost on cooling our home. Best part? You can do pretty much everything from your smartphone.

So, if you’re going to be home late and don’t want the AC on, you can simply turn it off on your smartphone.

Googling around, you will notice names like Google Nest and Ecobee popping up again and again, and plenty of articles to compare them. But, which ones are available in Dubai? Do we find a professional or can we DIY?

We spoke with Tanveer Anwar, Managing Director of Upkeep, to better understand the technical ins-and-outs of smart thermostats, what’s available in Dubai, and what to consider before buying one.

1. Best smart thermostats brands in Dubai?

We mostly deal with Google Nest and Ecobee, some ask for Honeywell Smart.

If you have a smaller budget but doesn’t want to compromise on quality, we also have our own factory brand of ‘Smart Thermostats’.

All these brands are compatible with UAE spec system but each brand has different requirements and cost. 

We have wifi database for each community in Dubai and can verify system compatibility within 15-30 minutes.

BrandPrice Range 
Google Nest 3rd Gen AED 836  
Google Nest 4th Gen AED 375  
Ecobee 6 PremiumAED 853  
Ecobee 6 EnhancedAED 659  
Ecobee 3 Lite 2nd GenAED 539  
Honeywell Smart T9AED 530  
Smart Thermostats (Factory brand)AED 250 – AED 350  

2. There is a lot of talk between Nest Gen 3 and Nest Gen 4. What’s the difference?

Here is a quick summary:

Nest Gen 3Nest Gen 4
– 3 Fan Mode
– More expensive
– Auto Scheduling
– Solid steel with a more luxurious look
– Need skills nest technicians to replace
– Has wifi and battery issues from time to time  
– 1 Fan Mode
– Cheaper
– Setup Manually
– Good look with recycle plastic material
– Use AAA batteries
– Can easily be replaced by client
– More stable based on past experience

3. What are the difference between Nest and Ecobee?

Almost both are similar in terms of features, but Ecobee’s latest premium version 6 has an air quality sensor. Between Nest Gen and Ecobee, we get less complains on Ecobee as Google Nest has issues from time to time.

4. Do we really save on DEWA?

Nest or any smart thermostat can help save energy via auto scheduling. Smart sensors can detect if someone is around, and if no one is around, it turns off automatically. The app also has data reporting to help you understand your energy uses.

5. Can we can buy online ourselves?

You can buy online if you wish, but we recommend buying it through a contractor to avoid warranty issues. After-sale service is just as important.

6. Do we really need a technician or can we install it ourselves?

The truth is, manufacturers like Nest have made installing a smart thermostat easy that anyone can do it — even if you have little experience with any kind of wiring. If you feel confident to give it a go, here is a guide to install it yourself.

If installing seems complicated and intimidating, go for a professional smart thermostat installer, not just any freelance HVAC technician, as bad installation can cause more issue and damage to your HVAC system. It may not help save energy.

7. What if our wifi is down, can we still control our AC manually?

Yes, you can still control it manually just like using any normal thermostats. Internet is required only if you want to control via the app remotely.

8. When is the best time to install… during or after renovation?

If you are renovating, best to install before you close off the ceiling so that your contractor can prioritize any re-wiring or civil work.

9. What are your clients’ feedback after they installed smart thermostats?

We have been installing Nest and Ecobee for the past 7 years, and never received any negative feedback. Most clients are happy with their upgrade. I don’t think any client will go back to manual once they have a taste of smart thermostats.

We also get feedback from clients that the nest’s sensor uses accurate timing for fan and cooling which really help reduces high humidity.

10. I live in a Rental. Can we move our smart thermostats with us if we move?

Yes, you can move it to your new home.

Next: Best Contractors in Dubai & How to Screen for a Good One (Part 1)