A sensible residence machine needn’t be costly to ship worth. Or favourite budget-priced good thermostat, the Honeywell T5, goes for about $125 on Amazon, and it delivers lots of the identical options as our favourite high-end mannequin that prices almost twice as a lot. The Momentum Meri good thermostat—which sells for simply $99 at Wal-Mart—alternatively, is simply plain low cost.
The Meri is spherical and has a colourful face to remind you of the household of Nest Studying Thermostats that shook up this sleepy business again in 2011. However instead of a rotating chrome steel dial, the Meri has a set plastic collar. Momentum expects your HVAC system to have a C wire for energy, which isn’t unusual, and the bodily set up course of wasn’t a lot totally different from different good thermostats I’ve reviewed for TechHive. So what’s to not like?
For starters, after you have the Meri wired up and have configured its most simple settings, it can immediate you to obtain Momentum’s app from the suitable app retailer. The thermostat will then show a QR code that you could scan from the app to hyperlink the thermostat to your account.
However the code scanner constructed into the app appeared unable to focus my smartphone’s digital camera on the QR code. The telephone’s native digital camera app had no such drawback, besides that the QR code took me to a direct obtain of the Chinese language-language model of the app. I wound up doing a guide seek for the English-language model of the app (out there for Android and iOS) and put in it on my telephone.
The Meri has a vivid touchscreen with decision of 320 x 480 pixels, however the touchscreen just isn’t very responsive, and the consumer interface displayed on it’s almost inscrutable. Tapping out the Wi-Fi password the thermostat wanted to hitch my residence community was a mentally painful expertise (it’s additionally value noting that the thermostat can solely connect with 2.4GHz networks).
The identical goes for configuring any of the thermostat’s settings. The house display shows the present temperature inside your property. Swipe throughout the display and this modifications to a clock. To entry every other settings, you’ll faucet the facility button, after which contact the plus and minus symbols to lift or decrease the goal temperature.
That’s easy sufficient, however you’ll must entry the “parameters” display for every thing else. This can be a huge checklist of more and more obscure choices beginning with Time/Date and System Sort choices (easy sufficient, proper?) however happening to incorporate such settings as “multi-stage hysteresis” (huh?). Momentum gives just about no clarification for the aim of many of those features, and the painfully gradual response time makes it irritating to scroll via them.
This wouldn’t be as huge of a deal if you happen to may entry the settings you want utilizing the cellular app, however a lot of them are to not be discovered there. The Meri app does allow you to accomplish primary duties, resembling adjusting the present temperature, establishing schedules, and configuring the settings for Residence and Eco modes.
As if all that wasn’t dangerous sufficient, the Meri offered to be an unreliable good residence associate. The primary Saturday morning after I had put in the brand new thermostat, we woke as much as uncover the home had been chilled to 58 levels Fahrenheit. I by no means decided what went incorrect, and it occurred solely as soon as. I’d dismiss it as a fluke, besides that the thermostat acted up in different methods, too.
After setting the goal temperature to 72 levels, as an example, the Meri managed my air-conditioning system to take care of that temperature simply high quality. However then the ambient temperature would rise to 77 with out the thermostat ever triggering the AC to run. There have been different instances when the thermostat labored precisely because it ought to. Intermittent anomalies resembling that one are extremely troublesome to troubleshoot.
If I had been to enterprise a guess, I’d say the Meri’s reliability points could possibly be fastened with a firmware udpate. However I don’t assume that may clear up the sluggish efficiency of its consumer interface—I believe this good thermostat simply doesn’t have sufficient processor horsepower. For those who’re working with a good funds, there are lots of low-cost good thermostats in the marketplace which can be higher than the Momentum Meri.