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^ Foundation FAQ

Contents
  1. Foundation FAQ
    1. 1 Using the Thermostat
      1. 1.1. How do I turn the thermostat on or off?
      2. 1.2. How do I change the mode or fan setting on my thermostat?
      3. 1.3. How do I change the temperature on my thermostat (set a temporary hold)?
      4. 1.4. I have a heat pump, how do I force my Auxiliary Heat to come on?
      5. 1.5. Why does the thermostat cause my equipment to come on more frequently than my old one?
      6. 1.6. Why does the thermostat turn on before the scheduled setpoint time?
    2. 2  Foundation Schedule and holds
      1. 2.1. I am too hot or cold, how do I change the temperature?
      2. 2.2. I don’t understand how the schedule works.
      3. 2.3. How do I change the schedule on the thermostat?
      4. 2.4. Can I use the thermostat without a schedule?
      5. 2.5. I want to change the temperature while I am on vacation.
      6. 2.6. How do I set a permanent hold?
    3. 3.    Thermostat Lights, Pricing and peaksaverPLUS Events.
      1. 3.1. How do I override an peaksaverPLUS Energy Event?
      2. 3.2. Why is the yellow light on?
      3. 3.3. How do I override a price conservation event?
      4. 3.4. Why is my temperature different than my schedule?
    4. 4.    Thermostat Communication
      1. 4.1. Why is there an ‘X’ in the top right corner of my thermostat?
      2. 4.2. Why is the time wrong on the thermostat?
      3. 4.3. Why is the price information not correct?
    5. 5.    Electricity Usage Information
      1. 5.1. How do I know what the current electricity price is?
      2. 5.2. How much am I spending on electricity right now?
      3. 5.3. How much electricity am I currently using?
      4. 5.4. How do I know if my current electricity usage is high or low?
      5. 5.5. Why does the Energy screen say HVAC instead of Home cost per hour?
      6. 5.6. Why is my electricity cost displayed as $0.00?
      7. 5.7. Why is my electricity usage only 0.05 kW?
      8. 5.8. Why does the total on my thermostat not match my bill?
    6. 6.    Thermostat Errors and Warnings
      1. 6.1. Why does my thermostat say low battery?
      2. 6.2. Why does my thermostat display the message “Brown Out Fault”?
      3. 6.3. Why does my thermostat display the message “Please Change Filter”?
      4. 6.4. Why does my thermostat display the message “Filter Fault Detected”?
      5. 6.5. Why does my thermostat display the message “Heat Pump Fault”?
      6. 6.6. Why does my thermostat display the message “Output Short Circuit”?
      7. 6.7. Why does my thermostat display the message “Configuration Error”?
    7. 7.    Thermostat User Preferences
      1. 7.1. How do I change the User Options?
      2. 7.2. How do I change the standby screen?
      3. 7.3. How do I change the time and date
      4. 7.4. The backlight is too bright at night
      5. 7.5.  Why does the thermostat seem to turn my equipment on more frequently than my old one?
      6. 7.6. How do I change my temperature to display in Fahrenheit or Celsius?

^ 1 Using the Thermostat

^ 1.1. How do I turn the thermostat on or off?

The thermostat is always on in order to maintain the temperature in your house. In order to change the thermostat brightness, see The backlight is too bright at night.

^ 1.2. How do I change the mode or fan setting on my thermostat?

  1. Select Thermostat Mode
  2. Press the MENU/SELECT button and select Mode & Fan Settings. Select the Mode you would like to use:
    • OFF – Heating and cooling systems are off but the fan may still run for home ventilation
    • COOL – Only the cooling system is on and used
    • HEAT – Only the heating system is on and used
    • AUTO – Automatically selects heat or cool to maintain the target temperature
    • EMERGENCY HEAT – Engages emergency heat – only appears if you have a heat pump with auxiliary heat.
  3. After selecting the desired Mode, the Fan Settings screen appears.  Normally this is set to AUTO which means it will only run when your system is heating or cooling. However, if you would like your fan to circulate air constantly, change this setting to ON.

^ 1.3. How do I change the temperature on my thermostat (set a temporary hold)?

From the thermostat home screen:

  1. Press the ARROW buttons to adjust the target temperature.
  2. This setting remains until the next Setpoint change in your schedule.
  3. To cancel a hold, Press any arrow button, and then press the MENU/SELECT button and follow the prompts.

^ 1.4. I have a heat pump, how do I force my Auxiliary Heat to come on?

There are two methods to forcing the auxiliary heat to turn on.

  1. Select EMERGENCY HEAT mode.  This will force the auxiliary heat stage to engage when heating is on. See How do I change the mode or fan setting on my thermostat?
  2. Set a temporary hold while in HEAT mode (See How do I change the temperature on my thermostat (set a temporary hold)?). The temporary hold will cause the first stage of heating to engage, or if already engaged, an additional stage of heating to engage.
  3. If available, the Auxiliary heating stage will engage after all available heat pump heating stages have engaged.  Note if using an outdoor temperature sensor the Auxiliary heating stage will not be available if the outdoor temperature is greater than the high balance point.

^ 1.5. Why does the thermostat cause my equipment to come on more frequently than my old one?

Energate thermostats are designed to maintain target home temperatures very accurately, meaning that they maintain the home indoor temperature within a narrow range and have little temperature swing (home reaching temperatures well above or below the target temperature).  To achieve this accurate temperature control, HVAC equipment may need to run more often than with an older thermostat that allows a wider temperature swing range.

To reduce the frequency of equipment on and off cycles, use the Equipment Settings option in the Installer Setup menu to increase the minimum on/off time. The default time is 3 minutes which is sufficient to prevent damage to HVAC equipment.  Note that if you increase the minimum time, you are sacrificing some accuracy in temperature control and your home temperatures are likely to be higher or lower than the target temperature more often.

^ 1.6. Why does the thermostat turn on before the scheduled setpoint time?

This is normal behavior for the default anticipation time, which is 60 minutes.  The anticipation time controls how far in advance of your scheduled time the thermostat will engage your heating or cooling to bring your home to the target temperature.  The User Options menu allows you to change the anticipation time or set it to 0 minutes, which turns off the feature.

^ 2  Foundation Schedule and holds

^ 2.1. I am too hot or cold, how do I change the temperature?

You can use the Thermostat home screen to change the target temperature at any time. The temperature remains in effect until the next scheduled setpoint.

If you adjust the target temperature and then leave the new temperature for three seconds, it becomes the new target temperature.

From the Thermostat home screen, press the Up or Down button to adjust the temperature.
After three seconds the screen returns to the home screen.

^ 2.2. I don’t understand how the schedule works.

A schedule setpoint is made up of a start time and its target heat and cool temperatures. By default, the schedule consists of:

  • Four weekday setpoints (Wake, Leave, Return and Sleep)
  • Two weekend setpoints (Wake, Sleep)

Each day in a thermostat schedule can use two, four or no setpoints. Each setpoint can contain only one heat and cool temperature setting (the target temperature). For example, to use a different heat temperature for Wake on the weekend, a different setpoint is required.

^ 2.3. How do I change the schedule on the thermostat?

From the thermostat home screen:

  1. Press the MENU/SELECT button to wake the thermostat.
  2. Press MENU/SELECT button to display the Menu.
  3. Use the ARROW buttons and MENU/SELECT button to choose SCHEDULE SETTINGS.
  4. Use the ARROW buttons and MENU/SELECT button to choose EDIT CURRENT SCHEDULE.

If you want to change the schedule times:

  1. Use the ARROW buttons and MENU/SELECT button to choose TIMES.
  2. Use the ARROW buttons and MENU/SELECT button to choose the schedule you want to change.
  3. Follow the prompts to change the schedule or press the HOME button to cancel at any time.

If you want to change the schedule temperatures:

  1. Use the ARROW buttons and MENU/SELECT button to choose TEMPERATURES.
  2. Follow the prompts to change the temperatures or press the HOME button to cancel at any time.

^ 2.4. Can I use the thermostat without a schedule?

You can turn off the schedule at any time.

When you turn off the schedule, your thermostat deletes the current schedule. You can use the Schedule Wizard to return to the default schedule or recreate your custom schedule.

Use the Turn Off Schedule option to operate the thermostat with a fixed temperature, without a schedule. When the schedule is turned off, any temperature that you select is the target temperature for all days and times.

^ 2.5. I want to change the temperature while I am on vacation.

You can change the target temperature temporarily using override options called holds.

  • Timed hold: Quickly change the temperature for a set number of days, starting immediately.
  • Vacation hold: Configures a temperature hold that starts and stops at dates and times you specify. You can specify the start time to be now or a time in the future.

Only one hold is active at a time. To set a new timed hold, you must cancel any vacation hold that is in progress. However, you can program a vacation hold while a timed hold is active. When a vacation hold starts, it replaces any timed hold. When a vacation hold expires, any previous timed hold takes effect again, unless it has expired.

^ 2.6. How do I set a permanent hold?

The Temperature Hold menu displays different options depending on whether a hold has been set.

  1. From the Thermostat home screen, press the Menu/Select button to display the main menu.
  2. Press the Up or Down button to highlight the Temperature Hold option, and then press the Menu/Select button.
  3. Press the up or down button to highlight the Set Permanent Hold option, and then press the Menu/Select button.
  4. Select the heat and cool target temperatures you want.
  5. Select save changes.

^ 3.    Thermostat Lights, Pricing and peaksaverPLUS Events.

Why is the blue light on?

The blue light indicates that the thermostat has been temporarily adjusted to reduce electricity consumption. There are two reasons for this to happen:

  • As part of the peaksaverPLUS program, a signal can be sent by the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) to temporarily reduce the electricity demand – for example, your air-conditioning might be temporarily directed to only work 40% of the time, over a period of few hours.  In this case the words “Energy event” are displayed on the thermostat.
  • Your thermostat can also respond to an increase in the electricity price – this is called a “Price Conservation Event”. When the price of electricity is high (the yellow light will be on), the thermostat can automatically adjust the temperature target to save energy depending on your Conservation Setting.  In this case the word “Conservation” is displayed on the thermostat.

^ 3.1. How do I override an peaksaverPLUS Energy Event?

You cannot override peaksaverPLUS events initiated by OPA from your thermostat.  You can schedule ahead of time to not be included in an event by contacting technical support.  See Contact technical support.

^ 3.2. Why is the yellow light on?

The yellow light indicates that the price of electricity is higher, either mid-peak or on-peak pricing.  When the price of electricity is high, the thermostat can automatically adjust the temperature target to save energy depending on your Conservation Setting.

To save electricity costs, try to avoid using your clothes dryer, washing machine, or dishwasher when the yellow light is illuminated. Run these appliances, which consume a lot of electricity, when the price is lower.

^ 3.3. How do I override a price conservation event?

A Price Conservation Event is an automatic adjustment to your target temperature made by your thermostat, in response to an increase in electricity price (the blue light will be on).

  • If you want to override just the current price conservation event, you can set a temporary temperature hold by using the up and down buttons on the thermostat home screen. Your new target temperature overrides the adjusted consumption-reducing target temperature on the thermostat.
  • If you want to ignore all future Price Conservation Events, you can select “Maximum Comfort” in the Conservation Settings menu, after which your thermostat will ignore all electricity prices, no matter how high (it will continue to display the prices but take no conservation action).

When the price conservation event is overridden, the blue light will go out, but the yellow light will stay on to indicate the price of electricity is high.

^ 3.4. Why is my temperature different than my schedule?

The temperature can differ from your schedule if an energy or price conservation event is in effect, in which case the blue light will be on (see Why is the blue light on?).  It can also be different if a temperature hold (see How do I set a temperature hold?) is in effect.

^ 4.    Thermostat Communication

^ 4.1. Why is there an ‘X’ in the top right corner of my thermostat?

This indicates that the thermostat has lost its connection to the OPA server.

Please check that your ZIP Connect (the small black box that is connected to your home router) is powered on and connected to the router and both the green (Power) LED and orange (Link) LED are solidly lit. If not, unplug the ZIP Connect, wait 3 seconds and then plug it back in.  If this does not resolve the problem, please Contact technical support.

^ 4.2. Why is the time wrong on the thermostat?

When communication is enabled, the thermostat gets the time from the OPA server and you cannot set the time manually. When communication is disabled, it operates using the time that is set via the User Options menu.

Check the signal strength indicator at the top of the Thermostat or Energy home screen. If it displays an X, see Why is there an ‘X’ in the top right corner of my thermostat.

If the time is still wrong after following these steps, please Contact technical support.

^ 4.3. Why is the price information not correct?

When communication is enabled, the thermostat gets the price from the OPA server. When communication is disabled, it uses the default price and there is an “x” next to the price.

Check the signal strength indicator at the top of the Thermostat or Energy home screen. If it displays an X, see Why is there an ‘X’ in the top right corner of my thermostat.  If your thermostat is online, please contact technical support.

^ 5.    Electricity Usage Information

^ 5.1. How do I know what the current electricity price is?

The price of electricity per kWh is displayed at the top of the Energy home screen.

An “x” next to the price indicates that you are not receiving price information from the OPA server; this is the default price in the thermostat (which is changeable by the user).

When the actual electricity price comes from the server, there is no “x” next to the price.

If price is not being received, wait for 4 hours and check again. If price is still not being received, please contact technical support.

^ 5.2. How much am I spending on electricity right now?

The current energy cost is displayed in the centre of the Foundation Thermostat’s Energy home screen and is an estimate of the cost for an hour of usage determined using your current energy usage and the current price of electricity.

^ 5.3. How much electricity am I currently using?

Your current energy use in kW is displayed in the centre of the Foundation Thermostat’s Energy home screen, just below the cost.

^ 5.4. How do I know if my current electricity usage is high or low?

Your thermostat displays the Consumption Information on a series of screens.

  1. From the Energy home screen, press the Menu/Select button to display the main menu.
  2. Press the Up or Down button to highlight Consumption Information, and then press the Menu/Select button.

The next 6 screens show the following information:

  • Current Energy cost and use compared to yesterday
  • Last 24 hours cost and use compared to the last 7 day average
  • Current month cost and use compared to last month

^ 5.5. Why does the Energy screen say HVAC instead of Home cost per hour?

This will occur if your thermostat is not communicating to the Meter Data Collector sensor on your meter.  Replace the batteries in the sensor with AA-size alkaline or lithium batteries and see if that solves the problem.  If not, please contact technical support.

^ 5.6. Why is my electricity cost displayed as $0.00?

This will occur if your thermostat is not communicating to the Meter Data Collector sensor on your meter.  Replace the batteries in the sensor with AA-size alkaline or lithium batteries and see if that solves the problem.  If not, please Contact technical support.

^ 5.7. Why is my electricity usage only 0.05 kW?

Turn on an appliance in the home that uses a lot of electricity, such as an electric stove or dryer. If turning on this appliance does not increase the Current Use value, the optical sensor on the Meter Data Collector may not be properly aligned with the optical port on the electricity meter.  Please contact technical support.

^ 5.8. Why does the total on my thermostat not match my bill?

The thermostat only uses the base price of electricity and does not include any delivery charges, taxes or other charges that are included in your bill.  In addition, your bill may start on different days of the month and may be for more than one month.  The thermostat is meant to give you more immediate feedback on your electricity usage to help you save and is not intended for billing purposes.

^ 6.    Thermostat Errors and Warnings

^ 6.1. Why does my thermostat say low battery?

Your thermostat displays the message “Low Battery” when the battery falls below 10% of its rated capacity. The battery preserves the date and time when there is a power outage. When you replace the battery, your thermostat does not lose any of your settings.

The message displays in full-screen mode, and the backlight flashes on and off until you acknowledge the message. The message then appears in the status line of the home screens until the issue is resolved.

Replace the battery with a CR-2032 battery. This message will clear after you replace the battery.

^ 6.2. Why does my thermostat display the message “Brown Out Fault”?

Your thermostat displays the message “Brown Out Fault” when there is a dip in the voltage in the form of a brown-out (for example, when your lights dim).  Your HVAC equipment does not run during a brown-out.  After power levels return to normal, your equipment functions normally.

The message displays in full-screen mode, and the backlight flashes on and off until you acknowledge the message. The message then appears in the status line of the home screens until the power levels return to normal.

^ 6.3. Why does my thermostat display the message “Please Change Filter”?

Your thermostat can prompt you to change the air filter on your furnace based on the scheduled Filter Reminder.

Your thermostat displays the message “Please Change Filter” on the scheduled Filter Reminder date. The message displays in full-screen mode, and the backlight flashes on and off until you acknowledge the message. The message then appears in the status line of the home screens until the issue is resolved by clearing the filter reminder.

^ 6.4. Why does my thermostat display the message “Filter Fault Detected”?

Some furnaces can send a message to the thermostat when the air filter needs to be changed. The message displays in full-screen mode, and the backlight flashes on and off until you acknowledge the message. The message then appears in the status line of the home screens until the issue is resolved.

If your furnace uses that feature, your thermostat displays the message “Filter Fault Detected” when the air filter needs to be changed. The message appears until you change the air filter on the furnace.

Note: If you use this feature, do not use the Filter Reminder on your thermostat. Set the Filter Reminder to 0.

^ 6.5. Why does my thermostat display the message “Heat Pump Fault”?

Your thermostat displays the message “Heat Pump Fault” when your heat pump needs to be serviced. The heat pump communicates with the thermostat to trigger the message.

The message displays in full-screen mode, and the backlight flashes on and off until you acknowledge the message. After you acknowledge the message, you cannot clear this message from your thermostat. The message then appears in the status line of the home screens until the issue is resolved. It clears only when the heat pump indicates that the issue is resolved.

Contact the person who installed your equipment, or a qualified HVAC technician, to help you resolve this problem.

^ 6.6. Why does my thermostat display the message “Output Short Circuit”?

Your thermostat displays the message “Output Short Circuit” when it detects a short circuit in its wiring. The message displays in full-screen mode, and the backlight flashes on and off until you acknowledge the message. The message then appears in the status line of the home screens until the issue is resolved.

Contact the person who installed your equipment, or a qualified HVAC technician, immediately to avoid damage to your equipment.

Note: If you see this message, your HVAC equipment may not run correctly, even though the thermostat continues to operate.

^ 6.7. Why does my thermostat display the message “Configuration Error”?

Your thermostat displays the configuration error message when there is an error with your thermostat.

Please contact technical support.  See Contact technical support.

^ 7.    Thermostat User Preferences

^ 7.1. How do I change the User Options?

  1. From the Thermostat home screen, press the Menu/Select  button.
  2. Press the Up  or Down  button to highlight User Options, and then press the Menu/Select button.
  3. Adjust the user options in sequence:
    • Press the Up or Down button to adjust the values and to highlight options.
    • Press the Menu/Select  button to select options and to move to the next item.

^ 7.2. How do I change the standby screen?

To access the Standby Screen options see How do I change the User Options and follow the instructions.

Standby Screen: Select what your thermostat displays after a period of inactivity:

  • Home Screen: Displays the home screen you last visited (Temperature or Energy).
  • Time & Date: Displays the current time and date.
  • Temperature: Displays the current indoor temperature.
  • Energy Consumption: Displays the cost of electricity used in the previous 24 hours and the average cost for the past 7 days.

^ 7.3. How do I change the time and date

The Energate thermostat gets its time from our central server and there is no need to set the time unless the thermostat has lost connection to the server.   In the case that the thermostat has lost connection, you will be able to set the time using the User Options menu.

^ 7.4. The backlight is too bright at night

To access the Standby Brightness options see How do I change the User Options and follow the instructions.

Standby Brightness: Select how bright the backlight is in standby mode either high, low or off. When you highlight a brightness option, the display switches to the brightness level for that option.

^ 7.5.  Why does the thermostat seem to turn my equipment on more frequently than my old one?

The Energate thermostat is optimized to maximize your comfort by keeping the temperature as close as possible to your target setpoint temperature.  This means it may run more often, but for a shorter time than an older thermostat with a large temperature range tolerance.  In all cases, the minimum on and off time is respected to prevent damaging your equipment.  The minimum on and off time is 3 minutes, but can be increased to 10 minutes.

^ 7.6. How do I change my temperature to display in Fahrenheit or Celsius?

From the thermostat home screen:

  • Press the MENU/SELECT button to display the thermostat menu.
  • Use the ARROW buttons and press the MENU/SELECT button to select USER OPTIONS.
  • Use the ARROW buttons and press the MENU/SELECT button to select BEGIN.
  • Follow the prompts to change the USER OPTIONS including the temperature display option or press the HOME button to cancel at any time.
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