Stelpro Maestro Line Voltage Smart Thermostat Reviews

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Winters in North America can be cold and snowy or variable. Either way, it’s nice to be warm and toasty when you get home from work. For many people, smart thermostats have solved the problem of comfort, while still providing significant energy savings. Keeping an eye on your energy costs is especially important for electric baseboard heat or other line-voltage heating systems since heating with electricity can get quite expensive.

Smart thermostats let you control your heat from any location with an internet connection. You can program them easily from an app or manually adjust them from afar. Some have automated features that detect when you’re in the house or learn your routine so that you can set it and forget it.

Our Verdict

Smart thermostats have been largely unavailable to people with electric baseboard and fan heaters. A handful of smart thermostats for this type of heating unit have started to gain popularity, and the Stelpro Maestro offers some fairly advanced features.

We like a lot of things about this product, including its streamlined design and ability to activate and deactivate many of the sensors and controls via the app. In fact, this offers plenty of customization, automation and scheduling options.

What it lacks is the ability to learn a routine and adjust accordingly. That’s not a huge problem, because you can still use the geofencing feature to toggle automatically between home and away modes. You can also enter activities to program changes in temperature, but it would add an element of convenience to the device.

Stelpro Maestro Thermostat - Controller-Thermostat (left) and Thermostat (right)

The image above shows the Stelpro Maestro Controller-Thermostat at left and the Stelpro Maestro Thermostat on the right.

Description

Stelpro calls the Maestro its most advanced smart thermostat to date. The Maestro Controller-Thermostat has plenty of features and a streamlined mobile interface.

What sets this apart from many other manufacturers’ products is that the Controller-Thermostat acts as a central hub for groups of additional thermostats. Those other thermostats, which Stelpro refers to as Maestro Thermostats, have slightly different features than the controller.

If you have 208-volt or 240-volt lines, you can use the Stelpro Maestro Controller-Thermostat. However, if your house only has 120-volt power, you would only be able to use the Maestro thermostat without the controller, and you would have to control it with a different type of hub.

The Maestro controller and thermostat measure 5 3/8” x 5 3/8” x 1 1/2”. Although the device is somewhat large for a smart controller, it is unobtrusive. It features a small display window, and all of the commands can be issued from the app on your mobile device.

Features

This table compares the two versions of the Stelpro Maestro: the Controller-Thermostat at left and the Thermostat at right. We’ll discuss the features in more detail below.

Maestro Controller-Thermostat
Maestro Controller-Thermostat
Maestro Thermostat
Maestro Thermostat
Model Number
SMC402
Model Number
SMT402
Size
5.375″ x 5.375″ x 1.5″ thick
Size
5.375″ x 5.375″ x 1.5″ thick
Connectivity
Wi-Fi and Zigbee
Connectivity
Zigbee
Voltage
208 VAC
240 VAC
Voltage
120 VAC
240 VAC
Max. Wattage
3400 W at 208 VAC
4000 W at 240 VAC
Max. Wattage
2000 W at 120 VAC
4000 W at 240 VAC
Wiring
2-wire or 4-wire
Wiring
2-wire or 4-wire
Learning
No
Learning
No
Voice Control
Yes, with additional Zigbee hardware or IFTTT
Voice Control
Yes, with additional Zigbee hardware or IFTTT
Remote Sensors
N/A
Remote Sensors
N/A
Multi-Zone Controller
Yes
Multi-Zone Controller
No
Auto Home/Away
Yes
Auto Home/Away
No
ENERGY STAR Certified
No
ENERGY STAR Certified
No
Color
Black
Color
White
Retail Price (Nov 2018)
$225 USD
Retail Price (Nov 2018)
$105 USD
Buy Maestro Controller-Thermostat at Home Depot Buy Maestro Thermostat at Home Depot

Works With: Compatible Smart Home Products

The Stelpro Maestro Controller-Thermostat natively works with any Zigbee connected hub, including Samsung SmartThings, Wink, and the Amazon Echo Plus. It is compatible with many other smart home devices (including Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant) by using IFTTT, which we’ll explain in more detail below.

In-Unit Sensors

The Maestro Controller-Thermostat contains an in-unit thermometer and humidity sensor. It can show the outdoor temperature, but it uses data from online weather services to do this.

One of the highlights of this unit is that it alerts you when there is a drastic drop in temperature. Although this is more of a feature that has to do with the app than the sensor, we thought we would mention it here.

Both devices have a proximity sensor that determines when someone is close to it. The default setting has the proximity sensor on, which makes the screen light up when you approach it. You can turn off this sensor from the app if you don’t want the light to go on, such as when you enter your child’s room at night.

Remote Sensors

These thermostats do not use remote sensors. However, most electric baseboard heaters require one thermostat per room or zone, which means that you can check the temperature in more than one area.

Multi-Zone And Multi-Home

You can create multiple zones using the Stelpro Maestro Controller-Thermostat. In fact, line voltage systems require you to have a separate thermostat for each heater or group of heaters. Because Maestro allows you to use a central controller and multiple offshoot thermostats, you can create as many zones as you’d like and control each one separately using the app.

Each home only requires a single Controller-Thermostat (SMC402). Then, each subsequent room should use a Thermostat (SMT402).

Automatic Home/Away

You can tell the app when you’re home, away or on vacation. The device also features geofencing to determine the location of your phone. If you have your phone on you, this enables the thermostat to adjust the temperature to your preferences when you come and go, and you never have to open the app.

When you’re home, you can schedule certain controls according to your activities. This allows you to automate the temperature at bedtime or when you’re working out, as long as you perform the activities according to the schedule that you set up in the app.

The geofencing feature also determines where you are so that the app can tell you the outside temperature. The outdoor weather data allows the device to advance or delay its heating start time to come up to the perfect temperature by the time that you get home. If it’s turned off, the unit can’t perform this function; instead, it will only respond to manual commands that you make using the app.

IFTTT – If This, Then That

The Maestro doesn’t have any native support for connecting to other smart home systems (aside from Zigbee hubs). However, it can be paired up with weather apps or voice assistants using IFTTT. This free service allows you to program actions based on triggers from one device and outcomes on another. This lets your smart devices communicate with one another. The Maestro Controller-Thermostat can act as an action or a reaction.

You can use these actions to use a voice assistant to change a setpoint value, have Maestro send you an email when the temperature exceeds or drops below a set limit or set the home/away modes based on your geolocation.

Check out the official Maestro applets and triggers at IFTTT.

Energy Use Reporting

As described in the Maestro by Stelpro App section of this article, you can track your energy usage using this app. It’s a fairly rudimentary report that tells you how much power the thermostat used as well as the minimum and maximum external temperature each day or the averages per month.

However, it’s a useful way to get a sense of how you’re using your heating system and where you could make adjustments to save money. It can also clue you in to dysfunctions in your system or other potential issues with your heating system.

ENERGY STAR Rating

The Maestro thermostats are not certified under the ENERGY STAR program. However, that doesn’t mean you won’t save energy and money by installing one. We still recommend the upgrade due to the money-saving benefits as well as improved comfort.

Setup And Control

The main Maestro Controller-Thermostat should be placed in a central location in the house. If it’s on the outskirts, you could encounter network connectivity issues. The thermostats that communicate with the controller should be placed no more than 40 feet away from the controller. If you have connectivity issues due to long distances between the Controller and Thermostats, then you may need to install a Zigbee range extender.

SAFETY WARNING: The electricity flowing through line voltage thermostats can injure you or cause a fire. Be sure to turn off the power at the circuit breaker before you disconnect the old thermostat! If you are uncomfortable working with electrical wiring, be sure to hire and electrician or HVAC technician to do the work for you.

Installation is fairly simple. After turning the power off, you can remove the old thermostat and mounting plate, then disconnect the wires. Next install the new mounting plate that came with your Maestro. Then you can connect the the thermostat wires to the existing electrical wires with the provided wire nuts. Finally, you secure the thermostat to the wall plate and tighten the screw in the base. Don’t forget to turn the power back on after everything is installed.

Once you have physically installed the Controller-Thermostat, you can follow the instructions on the app to complete the setup.

If you have multiple Maestro thermostats that communicate with one Controller-Thermostat, you might want to lock the additional devices so that the temperatures on them can’t be manually adjusted. You can do this from the app under Settings > Options > Lock.

Maestro By Stelpro App

The Maestro app allows you to setup and control all of the features available with this device. You can download it on Google Play for Android or iTunes for iOS.

Maestro by Stelpro App - Groups, Activities, Alerts, Geofencing, Usage Report

Some of the things that you can do with the Maestro app include grouping rooms into zones to simplify your controls and set points. Scheduling, which Meastro calls Activities, is much easier to set up in the app than on the device. You can also activate and deactivate certain alerts.

For example, the app can let you know when the temperature drops dramatically in a short time. It also adjusts the heating in that room to prevent overheating until you can get home to close a window or take care of the malfunction.

The app also gives you access to daily and monthly reporting of your heating usage. This can help you adjust your temperature settings based on the outdoor temperatures and determine what works best for your comfort and budget.

Pros And Cons

One of the best things about this thermostat is that it works with line voltage heating systems. It offers plenty of features, too, but the price can get expensive depending on the number of thermostats that you need. Although the app is fairly easy to use, it could use some updating. It’s still a little clunky and not as streamlined as some of the other apps in the industry.

  Stelpro Maestro Pros
  • Works with 120V, 208V and 240V systems
  • Can create multiple zones
  • Geolocation automates home/away mode and lets devices determine when to start the heat based on weather and your location
  • Can program temperature for scheduled activities in the home

The Stelpro Maestros offer many benefits, but they do have a few drawbacks.

  Stelpro Maestro Flaws
  • No native compatibility with other smart home products unless they have Zigbee radios
  • Doesn’t learn your routine as you use it
  • Can be hard to find outside of Canada

Rebates

Your utility company may give you money for installing a smart thermostat. Check with your local power company to find out whether this applies to you and these products.

Other Stelpro Smart Thermostats

Stelpro also offers the KI line voltage smart thermostat, which operates solely on a Z-wave or Zigbee network. These thermostats are much more basic and require a standalone hub to control them. The technologies in the KI are not as advanced as the Maestro so we only recommend them if you need a budget conscious solution without many features.

You can find the Stelpro KI Z-Wave model or the Stelpro KI Zigbee model on Amazon. Unfortunately, they are often out of stock.

Security And Privacy

Stelpro makes safety a priority. The product page for the Maestro Controller-Thermostat indicates that the company encrypts data and uses a secure network connection. As with any Wi-Fi thermostat, you should be sure your home’s Wi-Fi network is fully secure to prevent someone from gaining access to your home automation devices.

About The Manufacturer

Stelpro was founded in 1981 to offer innovated heating and HVAC products and accessories. Everything is created in Canada to adhere to the highest industry standards. Although the company only employes about 450 people in two factories in North America, it sells more than 800,000 heating units every year. It has been recognized as one of Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies since 2014.

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