The switch to eco-friendly heating systems for your home has seen the introduction of smart thermostats. These intelligent devices reduce energy wastage and make heating your home more convenient.
Since 2011, the Nest thermostat, which incorporates Google technology, was by far the most impressive. However, the 2nd-generation Hive Active Heating manufactured by British Gas is in contention to be a serious challenger.
In this guide, we review both Hive and Nest to determine what each of the thermostats offer and which is best suited to your lifestyle.
Why Install Hive or Nest?
Smart thermostats give you the ability to intelligently heat your home from anywhere. Because they can be controlled over broadband, you can alter the settings or turn your boiler on and off directly from your smartphone.
Both Hive and Nest give you more control over your heating preferences. You can heat individual rooms at different temperatures so you only heat the areas you are using. This helps reduce your energy bills.
The thermostats also adapt to changes in temperature in relation to weather conditions. This avoids your house overheating on warm days or the pipes freezing over when the temperature drops.
Having increased visibility of how much energy you are using, enables you to take control of your energy bills. This is what smart thermostats are designed to do.
There is little to choose between Nest and Hive when it comes to performance. Both thermostats are pretty evenly matched in the key areas. However, there are relevant differences between the two that could impact your purchasing decision.
Hive v Nest – What’s Are The Differences?
|Hive Active Heating 2nd Gen||Nest Learning Thermostat 3rd Gen|
|Price||£249 inc. Installation/£179 self-fitted. £99 switch to BG||£249 inc. installation/£199 self-fitted|
|Design||Black, 14cm x 1cm x 4.8cm||Grey, LCD screen, 11.7cm x 2.46cm,|
|Compatibility||Most gas & LPG, oil boilers with an existing thermostat, electric boilers||Almost all central heating systems|
|Connectivity Requirements||Internet 1.5Mbps, iOS or Android mobile device||Wi-Fi internet, smartphone or tablet running Android or iOS, Nest app|
|Battery||4 x AA batteries, 230v mains plug||Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion|
|Zone capability||3 zones||Up to 20 thermostats per property and 3 different locations|
|Power consumption||Less than 1kW/month||Less than 1kW/month|
Hive Heating Review
Hive replaces your current thermostat with this intelligent wireless system. All you need is a broadband connection and you can control your heating from remote locations using the Hive app installed on a mobile device.
British Gas recommend calling out one of their engineers to install Hive Acting Heating, but you can install it yourself and save £70.
You don’t have to be a British Gas customer either, although if you do switch to them from another gas supplier, they will fit the Hive system for a cut-price cost of just £99 (this price is subject to change).
British Gas customers can also spread the cost for the Hive Active Heating system over 12-months by joining the Hive Heating Plan.
The 2nd-gen Hive allows you to program six different settings and control three zones independently of one another. If you want to control more rooms, you have to buy additional thermostats.
One of the significant differences between Hive v Nest is that Hive doesn’t learn your heating routine as Nest does. Settings are changed manually.
The advantage of this is you have more control and flexibility over your heating. If you do forget to switch the boiler off when you’re not coming home, Hive sends alerts to your phone when the temperature changes.
You can also instruct Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa to turn your heating on for you and set alerts to remind you the heating is on when you don’t need it.
Nest Heating Review
The key selling point of the 3rd-generation Nest is that the algorithm learns your daily routines over a couple of weeks and sets the heating accordingly. It knows what time you leave the house and what time you get home, whether you work shifts or have a lie-in on weekends.
Therefore, Nest is well-suited to households that have set routines. That’s not to say Nest rigidly sticks to the routine. Settings can be adjusted manually when you need to. The thermostat also has other built-in technologies that help to monitor energy usage.
The thermostat has a detector so it knows when somebody is in the house, and which room they are in. It will set the heating accordingly, which enables you to save money by lowering the temperature of rooms you are not using.
Nest can be operated from a mobile device, and can also be synched to your GPS so it knows when you are coming home at a different time and will put the heating on.
The intelligent system also reads the weather forecast and detects a change in temperature for the UK’s unpredictable weather. The “True Radiant” feature starts heating you home earlier when the temperature drops.
The third-generation Nest is compatible with just about every central heating system in the UK, including underfloor heating. You can even set different times and temperatures for 20 different rooms across three locations.
Which Is best Hive or Nest?
There’s a lot of debate over whether Nest is better than Hive or vice-versa. In truth, they’re well-matched in many of the key areas.
If you’re considering the technology alone, then Nest has the clear edge thanks to its superior learning algorithm and motion detector.
However, when choosing the Hive or Nest thermostat you should consider cost and convenience. Will Nest’s algorithm turn on your heating when you don’t need it?
For homeowners that have a usual routine at home, or landlords that want to operate the heating from one account Nest wins hands down.
Householders that want more flexibility and control over your central heating are better suited to Hive.
Reduce Your Energy Bills
If you’re looking to lower the cost of your energy bills, consider upgrading your central heating system with a smart thermostat.
Nest or Hive gives you more control over the amount of energy you consume and will help you to manage the cost of your heating bills. Of course, the best way to reduce your heating is to install an energy-efficient boiler.