Enhance Your Nest Thermostat With Junction

Email and Text alerts from Nest thermostat

A couple of weeks ago I wrote a report comparing the Nest and Lyric smart thermostats, and although the Nest compares favorably on many fronts one area where it falls behind is in the availability of alerts.

To help solve this problem is a free service called Junction.

Junction can send you alerts via email or text in the following circumstances:

  • When Nest goes offline - either your home internet is down or Nest has stopped working
  • When temperatures aren't correct - if Nest is trying to heat or cool but the temperature isn't being reached then you get an alert
  • When humidity goes outside a range you have specified
  • When your furnace or HVAC system isn't working properly

Junction uses the Nest servers to gather all the data so when you set up your free Junction account you then connect it to your online Nest account by following the simple instructions on the screen. The Junction dashboard will also provide you with historical information on your Nest and heating/cooling system for the previous 10 days - this screenshot is a good illustration:

Junction dashboard room history

I thought this was an interesting idea, so I asked Junction's CEO, Jake Schrader, for more information and he said, "We want to put as much intelligence into the service as we can. Our goal is to build and install sets of recipes that our users need, including ones they may not even be thinking about".

It turns out that they have a plan to further expand the number of devices you can monitor from your web based Junction dashboard so that you can use the information in simple and useful ways and have that data intelligently analyzed to provide you not only with alerts but also actionable insights.

Nest monitoring and alerts are just the beginning, here are some features they plan to add to the service:

Junction reads that the alarm system reports home door is open (kids went out to play in back and didn't close the door) and that Nest reports home is losing heat. Junction sends alert to userĶ¾
Junction checks weather service for outside temperature and determines it is above freezing (let's say 55 degrees), Junction lowers Nest setting to 55 degrees to ensure that energy isn't wasted. Junction alerts user.
If Junction had detected that outside temperature was below freezing, Junction would send an emergency alert to the user and set Nest to maintain internal temperature to prevent freezing and home damage.

I believe that as more and more smart home devices become connected, a centralized dashboard of the kind that Junction is creating will become increasingly important to keep your smart home organized and operating smoothly.

It's a free web service so point your browser to www.junction.com to give it a try.

You can also get more information about Nest and other thermostats at AllThermostat.com.

You might also like to read:
Internet of Things Knowledge Blog
Have You Considered Getting A Smart Thermostat Yet?
The Pros and Cons of Technology's March into our Homes