ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat Review

Do you want to save up to 23% on your heating and cooling bills? I would be hard-pressed to find a person that would answer “no” to that question. That’s why I’m so excited to be reviewing smart thermostats, which use motion-sensing, schedules and remote controls to reduce your energy consumption, ultimately saving you money. But which smart thermostat is the right one for you?

In this review, I’ll be discussing the ecobee3 lite in terms of design, features, installation at app. By the end, you’ll have a great idea of whether or not the ecobee3 lite is the smart thermostat for you and your smart home. I’m sure you can’t wait to find out, so let’s get started!

Get Best Offer
ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat
ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat
ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat

With humidity and proximity sensing and integrations with Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Microsoft Cortana, you'll love using the ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat in your smart home. 

ecobee3 lite Design

ecobee3 lite Thermostat
ecobee3 lite Thermostat. Photo provided by ecobee.

The ecobee3 looks shockingly like the ecobee4, which I’ve also reviewed. It’s black with a 3.5 inch full color LCD touchscreen in 230 by 480 pixels. The ecobee3 lite will work in your home whether you have gas, oil, electric, or dual fuel heating and cooling, and a c-wire is not required— that’s why the ecobee3 lite includes a Power Extender Kit. You can have up to 16 ecobee thermostats in your home, with no maximum number of homes per account.

The ecobee3 lite will be hardwired into your home and will connect to the ecobee app via Wi-Fi. Certified to be energy-efficient by ENERGY STAR, the ecobee3 lite uses less than 3.5 VA of power a month, making it environmentally friendly as well as extremely convenient. And that’s it for design!

ecobee3 lite Features

Of course, the main function of the ecobee3 lite is to allow you to remotely control your home’s temperature, whether you’re in your living room or across the country. But temperature isn’t the only thing that the ecobee3 lite can sense. In fact, the reason that it says you money on heating and cooling is because of its other sensors, like:

  • Humidity: You know how sometimes the weather station will tell you that it’s 70 degrees out but feels like 80? Yes, that’s because of humidity. In order to get a truly accurate reading of what it feels like, you’re going to need to take humidity into account as well.
  • Proximity: By sensing motion, the ecobee3 lite can make sure it’s not wasting energy if no one is in the room.

Now, what the ecobee3 lite can’t sense is occupancy and ambient light. Let me explain both:

  • Occupancy: While the ecobee3 lite can sense if you walk in front of it, it won’t be able to tell if you’re home in general, home and asleep, or home and away, so you may not save as much energy as possible.
  • Ambient light: Some smart thermostats can dim or brighten their screen in relation to how much light is in the room, saving you that much more energy.

Neither of these are dealbreakers, but I do wish the ecobee3 lite could sense occupancy. Of course, if you want to see exactly how much power your ecobee3 lite is consuming, ecobee does provide an energy usage report.

smart-thermostat-reviews
Smart Thermostat Schedules

You can also set up schedules for your ecobee3 lite or connect it to your phone’s GPS, a feature called geofencing. However, geofencing is only available in the Android and HomeKit app. For finer control, ecobee recommends using a combination of IFTTT and the Life 360 app.

smart-thermostat-review
Smart Thermostat Geofencing

You can also control your ecobee3 lite with vocal commands given that you have Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, or Microsoft Cortana. You’ll also be able to connect the ecobee3 lite to other IoT devices from brands like Samsung SmartThings, Wink, and any IFTTT-enabled device. If you want a fully automated home, these smart platform integrations are key.

Now, if you want to allow multiple users to control your ecobee3 lite, just give them your credentials— they’ll work on the ecobee app in an unlimited number of devices.

The ecobee App

The ecobee App
The ecobee App

The ecobee app will guide you through setting up the ecobee3 lite, as well as controlling and monitoring it, creating schedules and setting up smart platform integrations. The app has a 3.6 star rating on the Google Play store and a 4.3 on the Apple store. Unfortunately, it looks like many Android-users weren’t happy with a recent update, so I would definitely double-check this before purchasing the ecobee3 lite.

Get Best Offer
ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat
ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat
ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat

With humidity and proximity sensing and integrations with Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Microsoft Cortana, you'll love using the ecobee3 lite Smart Thermostat in your smart home. 

Recap of the ecobee3 lite

At $169, the ecobee3 lite is one of the least expensive smart thermostats that I’ve ever reviewed, and I’d definitely recommend it. Let’s break it down even further.

Go with the ecobee3 lite if you’re looking for…

  • Integrations with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, etc. 
  • Affordable price
  • No c-wire required

But avoid it if any of the following are dealbreakers…

  • No occupancy or ambient light sensors
  • No battery-powered option 
  • Negative recent reviews for Android app 

Want to check out other options? Read about the best smart thermostats of 2019.

Gabe Turner

Gabe Turner

Gabe Turner is an attorney and journalist with a passion for home tech and secure, efficient living. Since graduating from NYU Law, he has maintained a paradoxical existence of trying to live life adventurously while remaining staunchly risk-averse. He is torn by the dual desires of wanting to only be in Brooklyn writing about housing policy and smart home tech and aspiring to visit his friends scattered across the globe. Gabe believes that stable, safe communities are the cornerstone to a vibrant and healthy society, and it is this passion that brought him to contribute to Security Baron.

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