Home & Garden

lennox furnace and lennox smart thermostat vs ecobee?

  • Last Updated:
  • Nov 19th, 2017 8:27 pm
[OP]
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jul 15, 2003
2603 posts
427 upvotes
Ontario, Canada

lennox furnace and lennox smart thermostat vs ecobee?

I have a new Lennox EL296UH045XV36B-07 furnace. 2 stage heat. variable fan. Still using my ancient bare bones programmable thermostat.

I was going to get an ecobee but then noticed there are these other data terminals on my furnace. and i'm reading some stuff about a proprietary data control link between some special lennox thermostats and lennox furnaces to enable better/different control than what an ecobee can do. But i can't find detailes.

What more would a lennox thermostat let you do with this furnace than an ecobee?
17 replies
Sr. Member
May 10, 2006
884 posts
302 upvotes
Toronto
It looks like the Lennox smart thermostats are more than double the price. Is this correct? From price alone, I would go with ecobee plus you have the option to monitor temp of multiple rooms.
Mobile: $40 - Telus Student 50 Plan MTM ($10 BYOD) - 500 mins anytime, eve/wknds @ 5PM, 5GB data, unl text, FAV10, CID and VM25
Cable/Internet: $104+tax - VIP, Gigabit, PVR, HD Box
Home Phone: $0 - Obi200/FPL with Google Voice (free call Can/US)
Deal Addict
May 23, 2009
1611 posts
446 upvotes
Mississauga
The Lennox comminucating thermostat can be configured to manage humidification/dehumidification better by adjusting the fan speed on-demand but you might need additional sensors or parts to get the full effect.
[OP]
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jul 15, 2003
2603 posts
427 upvotes
Ontario, Canada
Yeah there doesn't seem to be much extra functionality. I was assuming that with the 2 way communication data line between furnace and thermostat there would be a lot more it could do.
Newbie
Mar 18, 2012
38 posts
9 upvotes
Winnipeg, MB
The nice thing about a communicating thermostat is you can adjust can speeds to whatever liking you choose via the thermostat. Errors or alerts with the furnace are displayed on the thermostat which will tell you exactly what's wrong with the furnace.
Deal Expert
User avatar
May 10, 2005
28245 posts
4214 upvotes
Ottawa
Kevinck wrote:
Nov 14th, 2017 9:01 am
Yeah there doesn't seem to be much extra functionality. I was assuming that with the 2 way communication data line between furnace and thermostat there would be a lot more it could do.
If you have a complicated furnace, why would you not buy the same thermostat made exactly for that brand. If you have a mismatch and the furnace acts up, will you call Ecobee or Lennox? One will blame the other.
I would get the thermostat that is meant to work with the furnace to get the most efficiency out of both.
Is it solipsistic here? Or is it just me?
[OP]
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jul 15, 2003
2603 posts
427 upvotes
Ontario, Canada
Pete_Coach wrote:
Nov 15th, 2017 4:19 pm
If you have a complicated furnace, why would you not buy the same thermostat made exactly for that brand. If you have a mismatch and the furnace acts up, will you call Ecobee or Lennox? One will blame the other.
I would get the thermostat that is meant to work with the furnace to get the most efficiency out of both.
That's what i want to know. What extra communication/efficiency/functionality do you get? All i can find out on lennox's site about the lennox communicating thermostats is.... well... no there's website says nothing concrete. All it talks about is the wifi and data gathering functionality that all smart thermostats have.

Hence why i asked the question.

The furnace manual has many sections dedicated to dip switch settings and how to alter the furnace's behaviour for non-lennox 1 or 2 stage thermostats. so i'm pretty confident i understand exactly how it will behave with any other thermostat and i'm happy with the control and customization it provides through dip switches. I just wanted to know exactly what else the lennox one did.

For example
Through jumpers i can configure the circulate fan to be either 28, 38, 70 or 100% of full speed. Does the lennox thermostat let me set this to anything? does it also include a slider so i can change it on the fly to anything?
Through jumpers you can set 4 different cooling profiles. Does the thermostat let you select one of these preset 4? or define your own? or anything?
Here's what the factory default is:
Ramping Option A (Factory Selection)
Motor runs at 50% for 30 seconds.
Motor then runs at 82% for approximately 7-1/2 minutes.
If demand has not been satisfied after 7-1/2 minutes,
motor runs at 100% until demand is satisfied.
Once demand is met, motor runs at 50% for 30 seconds
then ramps down to stop.
Deal Addict
May 23, 2009
1611 posts
446 upvotes
Mississauga
The ramping profile you posted is for dehumidification using an a/c which is also a good example.

When using a communicating thermostat, you should not set the jumpers on the board as the thermostat will decide how to ramp up the blower. On a day where both cooling and dehumidification are needed it will follow a ramping profile similar to what you posted above. If it then has to run cooling again but no dehumidification about an hour later, it will skip all the ramping and go 100% after ~30seconds. The Ecobee3 on the other hand will continue to use the ramping profile everytime if the jumpers are set on the board; or straight to 100% if the jumpers are not set on the board. That is how the communicating thermostats work based on required demand...on-demand.

It is similar on modulating heat furnaces and variable a/c compressors. When used with a non-communicating thermostat the burner/compressor is set using jumpers to have only 1-2 stages. A communicating thermostat will not need the jumper set and will be able to adjust the burner/compressor based on heating or cooling demand. Slow heat/cool at maybe 35% capacity or fast heat at 100% capacity.

On a packaged HVAC system with all three, they'll run much quieter most of the time and more efficiently for heating, cooling or dehumidifying. Only extreme days should have them maxing at 100% often.
Newbie
Jan 11, 2017
29 posts
4 upvotes
we have a lennox and use a ihome comfort stat. it has a neat touch display and a few things like outside temp but the only usable difference for me is the humidifier control. it has cool stuff like smart phone control but i never use it.
Deal Addict
Feb 4, 2015
2581 posts
457 upvotes
Canada, Eh!!
bubuski wrote:
Nov 15th, 2017 7:15 pm
The ramping profile you posted is for dehumidification using an a/c which is also a good example.

When using a communicating thermostat, you should not set the jumpers on the board as the thermostat will decide how to ramp up the blower
. On a day where both cooling and dehumidification are needed it will follow a ramping profile similar to what you posted above. If it then has to run cooling again but no dehumidification about an hour later, it will skip all the ramping and go 100% after ~30seconds. The Ecobee3 on the other hand will continue to use the ramping profile everytime if the jumpers are set on the board; or straight to 100% if the jumpers are not set on the board. That is how the communicating thermostats work based on required demand...on-demand.
If jumpers are changed on communicating thermostat will it matter what settings the jumpers are on? Or if I understand correctly... irrespective of what the jumper settings are on board the communicating thermostat will operate according to settings set directly on communicating thermostat?
Deal Addict
May 23, 2009
1611 posts
446 upvotes
Mississauga
georvu wrote:
Nov 16th, 2017 8:52 pm
If jumpers are changed on communicating thermostat will it matter what settings the jumpers are on? Or if I understand correctly... irrespective of what the jumper settings are on board the communicating thermostat will operate according to settings set directly on communicating thermostat?
The jumpers(really dip switches) are set on the furnace board. If the fan ramping profile is set on the board it will override any thermostat that is installed...it just works on a timer continuously.
So on a communicating thermostat you want the fan profile dip switches off on the furnace(comes off from the factory). The communicating thermostat will then tell the furnace to increase fan speed using the logic built in to the thermostat.
Deal Fanatic
Sep 10, 2002
5607 posts
126 upvotes
Vancouver
The Lennox thermostat on a Lennox furnace will automatically override the dip switches.
[OP]
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jul 15, 2003
2603 posts
427 upvotes
Ontario, Canada
So i can see if you have one of the modulating heat furnaces the communicating thermostat will have an actual benefit. And i can see how it can tweak profiles given that it has more information and history about current conditions or coniditons over the last hour. Like that dehumidification one that was mentioned. But overall for my 2 stage it sounds like it will only be a slight sidegrade to the built in profiles on the furnace board that can be adjusted with dip switches.

Maybe if choosing to purchase outright a different smart thermosat vs the lennox it gives more weight to the lennox. But if you already own something else it doesn't seem like paying again to get the lennox is worthwhile.

Thanks for all the information and opinions.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Mar 8, 2002
4213 posts
810 upvotes
Ottawa
Get the Ecobee. It supports the Lennox dehumidification cycle. You will need at least seven wires between the furnace and Ecobee for wires R, C, W1, W2, Y1, G, and DS. Shut off power to furnace. Change the DIP switches to allow the thermostat to control second stage. Break the W914 link on the furnace motherboard. Connect the DS terminal on the furnace to ACC+ on the Ecobee. Ecobee will ask what you have connected to that wire, select dehumidifier.

I have a Lennox furnace and man, did the dehumidification cycle make a world of difference in comfort this past summer. I only got the Ecobee last year so this was my first summer with it in cooling mode.

Add in a Black Friday sale and $100 rebate from Enbridge/Union Gas, ecobee is an easy choice.

Top