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Witten by Bernard Morgan (Engineer) & Adam Apperley (Marketing). Published: February 7, 2024. Updated: June 13, 2024

Nest vs Hive vs Tado: Which is the best?

Nest vs Hive vs Tado - Which is best? | Boilerhut

If you are shivering while watching your heating bills soar, it might be time to consider the wonders of smart thermostats. These devices offer a solution by optimising your home’s heating control, ensuring you stay cosy without breaking the bank.

Nest, Hive, and Tado take centre stage in our guide to the best smart thermostats, each offering a unique blend of features and benefits. But how do you choose between them? From cost considerations to compatibility with voice assistants like Alexa and Google. We delve into the details to help you make an informed decision.

So, let’s investigate and discover which smart thermostat reigns supreme: Nest, Hive, or Tado.

Nest vs Hive vs Tado: Can They Cut Down on Your Heating Costs?

In a nutshell, the answer is a yes. Smart thermostats offer a unique proposition, ensuring your home stays warm without wasting energy. They do this by understanding your daily routines and tracking your presence at home. These devices can optimise schedules and adjust temperatures based on the weather.

While Nest learns your habits and employs room sensors to detect your absence, Tado and Hive rely on your smartphone’s location. All three systems connect to IFTTT, enabling custom event creation. However, Hive has announced it is removing this functionality from June 2024. With the convenience of smartphone apps, you can tweak settings on the go.

Savings will depend on how much you use your heating and how warm you like to be. If you like it cooler you may not see as much of a saving.

Nest claims 12% savings, and Hive claims a potential £130 annual savings. The investment pays off in about two years for the average household. With rising energy costs, even a 10% yearly savings add up over time.

Nest vs Hive vs Tado: The Costs

Buying

There are two considerations, the device’s price and the installation costs. For example, removing an older thermostat may take a bit of time increasing labour costs.

The average cost of a Nest online is £191. There are a few different models available, but we’ll stick to their main product, the 3rd Generation thermostat.

Hive tends to cost £179, a smaller version is available for £139 from Hive directly which they claim has all the functionality in a smaller form.

Tado is available from approximately £180. This is for their V3+ product.

With all three you may find you have to pay more if you want multiple zones or to add your hot water tank timing.

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Installing

If you want to install one of these thermostats without new boiler you may need to pay anywhere from £80 to £150. This is for the electrician to come out and remove an old system and wire in and setup your new smart stat. Tado talks about self-installation, which would save you money. But we would recommend caution, especially in colder climates or winter months.

Tado Smart TRV - Nest vs Hive vs Tado | Boilerhut

If you have a smart thermostat installed at the same time as the boiler installation you tend to pay less as there is already an engineer on site. The average cost of adding a smart thermostat to a boiler installation is £220.

Hive and Tado offer smart TRVs. These allow you to set the individual temperature of a room. This can then be changed throughout the day if required. Both company’s TRVs are able to ‘call for heat’. This means if a room drops below the desired temperature the boiler will come on outside of the normal schedules.

Nest vs Hive vs Tado: Compatibility

In general, these thermostats are compatible with most modern boilers. Below, we have listed the company’s pages where they discuss boiler compatibility.

One of the biggest considerations is if you boiler has OpenTherm or not. OpenTherm is a communication language between boilers and control units, like smart thermostats. It allows a boiler to modulate rather than just turn on and off. OpenTherm is like turning a pan of water down and not off when cooking pasta.

OpenTherm allows a boiler to modulate to, for example, 10% of its full power to keep your home warm. If your thermostat or boiler doesn’t allow for OpenTherm, your boiler will be on or off. In this case, your boiler will run at full power until your home reaches temperature. It will then turn off. It will repeat this over and over again. OpenTherm will allow the boiler to reduce power, keeping your home warm whilst remaining on a using a fraction of the fuel.

Nest and Tado are both OpenTherm compatible. Hive has yet to add OpenTherm to its devices. Read more about OpenTherm here >

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Nest vs Hive vs Tado: Smart home friendly

Nest Camera - Nest vs Hive vs Tado | BoilerhutAll three thermostats integrate seamlessly into broader smart home ecosystems. This includes their own platforms and third-party integrations such as Amazon Echo, Google Home, and IFTTT.

Nest expands its offerings with smoke alarms, cameras, video doorbells, and Nest Mini smart speakers. It collaborates with various brands through the Works With Nest program, linking with LIFX, Hue, Wemo, Google Home, Amazon Echo, and others. Nest now also works with Apple HomeKit.

Tado’s system extends to individual radiator thermostats and intelligent air-conditioning controllers. It is also compatible with Siri and Alexa.

Hive‘s ecosystem encompasses remote cameras, window/door sensors and motion sensors. It also includes smart light bulbs, plug sockets, and a water leak sensor, supporting Google Home, Amazon Echo and Siri.

Nest vs Hive vs Tado: Design

All three thermostats look good, but which you prefer and would suit your home is up to you.

Nest vs Hive vs Tado: The Winner

All three thermostats are good. They all have benefits above the others, but we’ve got a clear order of preference, and we’ll explain why.

#1 Tado (winner)

Our winner is the Tado. It may not have the fully-integrated smart-home setup but it doesn’t matter. Being OpenTherm compatible and having great customer service means we would always pick Tado over Next and Hive. It’s just as smart as Nest and Hive but if anything were to go wrong, in our experience, Tado will sort it out quickly and without fuss.

Tado - Best Smart Thermostat - Nest vs Hive vs Tado | Boilerhut

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#2 Nest

Nest is a great product with good smart home additions and OpenTherm. But in our experience, if something goes wrong, trying to get hold of them takes a long time. This isn’t great if it’s winter and your heating won’t come on. We no longer recommend Nest to our customers for this reason.

#3 Hive

Hive, like Nest has good smart home connectivity and hardware options. The main issue is the lack of OpenTherm. This means you can save more money with the Tado and Nest

Other options

Viessmann Vitotrol 100-E - Nest vs Hive vs Tado | BoilerhutHaving said all that, in some circumstances, there may be a better option than Tado. If you have a Viessmann Vitodens 100-W installed by Boilerhut, we would recommend the Viessmann Vtotrol 100-E smart thermostat. It has all the same functionality as the Tado (without the smart TRVs) but the main reason is you would get a warranty that follows the boiler.

This means up to a 12-year warranty when installing with a Vitodens 100-W.

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