ecobee

Smart Home, Smart Away, and Follow Me Features

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Smart Home, Smart Away and Follow Me are three ecobee Smart Features that take occupancy into account to manage comfort and savings.

This article applies to all ecobee thermostats except Smart, Smart SI, EMS and EMS SI.

  • Smart Home and Smart Away are available on ecobee SmartThermostat with voice control, ecobee4 and ecobee3 out of the box.
  • Follow Me can be enabled once the SmartSensor, which is included with SmartThermostat with voice control, or the wireless Room Sensor, which comes with the ecobee3 and ecobee4, is paired with the thermostat.
  • With the ecobee3 lite, Smart Home and Smart Away can be used once a Room Sensor or SmartSensor is paired with the thermostat. With two or more sensors paired to the ecobee3 lite, Follow Me can be enabled.

Note: SmartSensor also works with ecobee3, ecobee3 lite and ecobee4.

For more information on the differences between ecobee thermostats, please review our Product comparison chart.

What is it?

With Smart Home/Smart Away enabled, when your thermostat senses you're home during a scheduled Away period or away during a scheduled Home period, it will automatically override your schedule for comfort (Smart Home) or savings (Smart Away). So even when your schedule changes, your ecobee knows to adjust on its own—helping you save energy and stay comfortable.
 
Smart Home/Away works independently of the sensor participation rules you've set up for your Comfort Settings. That's to say, it acts upon the occupancy readings from all of your sensors—not just the ones participating in the scheduled Comfort Setting. Smart Home and Smart Away cannot be triggered during a scheduled Sleep period.

How it works

By using the occupancy information reported by your ecobee thermostat's built-in occupancy sensor* and the Room Sensors paired with your ecobee, Smart Home/Away tracks your household's comings and goings to set the temperature for comfort or savings.
 
 

SMART HOME

When your ecobee senses someone's home during a scheduled Away period... 
 
And the following conditions are met:
  • The Away or Custom Away Comfort Setting has been active for over an hour.
  • Smart Home hasn't been active for at least two hours.

Smart Home intelligently switches on your Home Comfort Setting for maximum comfort. 

How long does Smart Home run for?

When it's active, Smart Home will stay in effect until 
a) two hours pass with no occupancy detected; b) it is cancelled; or c) the start of the next scheduled Comfort Setting.

What temperature set points are in effect when Smart Home is running?

Smart Home uses your Home Comfort Setting's hot and cold set points. 

SMART AWAY

When your ecobee senses nobody's home during a scheduled Home period... 
 
And:
  • No occupancy has been detected for two straight hours during a scheduled Home period or when Smart Home is running.

Smart Away intelligently overrides your usual schedule—helping you save on your energy bill.

How long does Smart Away run for?

Smart Away runs until it detects occupancy or until the start of the next scheduled Away period.

What temperature set points are in effect when Smart Away is running?

Since your ecobee thermostat knows that it will have to recover the temperature gap should you return, it sets the temperature to where it can quickly get your home back to your Home Comfort Setting set points, while still conserving energy. (Typically, 1–4° Fahrenheit lower than your Home set points.*)

*Actual number is based on your ecobee's ongoing analysis of your HVAC's equipment's ability to recover the temperature gap.

How to enable Smart Home/Away 

On your thermostat's screen or in the app, go to: 
MAIN MENU > SENSORS > SMART HOME/AWAY > set to Enabled

 

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How to tell when Smart Home or Smart Away is active

Look for the following indicators on your thermostat:
Smart Home:
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Smart Away:
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Things to Consider:
  • Neither Smart Home nor Smart Away will trigger during a scheduled Sleep period.
  • The parameters of Smart Home and Smart Away cannot be customized.
  • Occupancy is measured roughly every 5 minutes, so the ecobee will not immediately go into Smart Home or Smart Away mode until the next 5 minute interval has been reached.
 
Follow Me helps your ecobee better manage the temperature in occupied rooms. When Follow Me is enabled, the ecobee will only utilize sensors that have recently detected occupancy in temperature averaging, rather than relying on the participation settings used by your Comfort Settings. In other words, the temperature averaging feature of the ecobee will follow you throughout the home, delivering comfort to the rooms you inhabit.
 
If more than one sensor detects motion, the average of these sensors will be used. Your ecobee makes changes gradually when multiple sensors are detecting motion to make sure there are no sudden changes for your heating and cooling system to deal with.
 
Similarly, once you leave a room and your sensor stops detecting motion, your thermostat's temperature data is gradually (and not immediately) removed from the calculation of the set point.
 

How it works 

When Follow Me mode is enabled your thermostat:

  1. Takes the temperature and occupancy readings from each of the sensors participating in the scheduled Comfort Setting.
  2. Ranks them according to where you’re spending the most time.
  3. Based on the rankings, calculates the optimal home temperature for the active Comfort Setting.
To enable Follow Me, on the thermostat’s screen:
MAIN MENU > SENSORS > FOLLOW ME > set to “Enabled”

 

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When Follow Me is disabled, the ecobee will follow your sensor participation rules assigned to each Comfort Setting.
 
Note: The thermostat will follow the “Home” Comfort Setting participation rules and ignore Follow Me if the following occurs:
  • No occupancy is detected from any sensors

 

How does Follow Me function under the “Sleep” Comfort Setting?

 
In the Sleep period when no motion is detected, Follow Me defaults to averaging temperature across the selected sensors in your network. However, if any motion is detected, Follow Me will use this information to heat/cool appropriate rooms.
 

More Follow Me mode questions and answers

What happens if none of the sensors participating in the active Comfort Setting report motion?

If none of your participating sensors report motion for 30 minutes, your ecobee will set the temperature based on the average of all participating sensors (even in the Sleep Comfort Setting).

I'm spending most of my time in the living room this evening, and I just walked by my kitchen's Room Sensor. I don't want a single reading from my kitchen sensor to determine my home's temperature. In Follow Me mode, how much weight does my ecobee assign to a single reading versus the many readings from the living room sensor?

If you walk by a sensor and it detects occupancy, the weight your ecobee assigns to that single reading in calculating the home temperature will be low. In this scenario, most of the weighting will be given to the occupancy readings from your living room sensor. To put it differently, the more time you spend in front of a particular sensor, the more weight your ecobee will assign to that sensor's readings.

When I leave a room, how long will it be until that Room Sensor's temperature readings no longer factor into my ecobee's temperature averaging calculation?

Follow Me includes participating sensors that have detected occupancy within the past 30 minutes.

If you leave a room and its sensor stops detecting motion, that sensor's temperature readings will be gradually (not immediately) removed from your ecobee's set point calculation over a 30-minute period.

If 30 minutes pass with no occupancy detected, that sensor's reading will be excluded until occupancy is detected again.

What happens to Follow Me mode if I manually adjust the temperature while it's running?

Adjusting the temperature on your thermostat or in the app with the temperature slider (i.e. placing a Manual Hold) activates the Home Comfort Setting. When Home is active the sensors participating in that Comfort Setting participate in Follow Me mode.

To cancel a Manual Hold and resume your scheduled Comfort Setting, tap the X icon on your ecobee's Home Screen. Using the app? Press Cancel on the thermostat Home Screen.

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