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The tadoº Smart Thermostat - exclusive price for OVO members!

The tadoº Smart Thermostat - exclusive price for OVO members!
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Updated on 13/04/22 by Jess_OVO

 

Meet the wireless tadoº Smart Thermostat

 

The OVO smart home just got a bit smarter, with tadoº.

 

It’s a smart thermostat that lets you control your heating and hot water wherever you are, and help to reduce your heating bills. Better yet, we’re offering an exclusive price, available only to OVO members! More info on this offer, here. 

 

See all of the details and FAQs on our tadoº product page, here.

 

@Karlb1 recently purchased this, and asked how to install it. See their topic, here. Spoiler alert: you can choose to set it up yourself. Installation guide, here.

 

We want to hear from YOU if you’ve got a smart thermostat already. What model do you have? Was it easy to set up? Has it given you greater control and efficiency over your heating? 

 

@NinjaGeek@PeterR1947 and others shared their experience with smart thermostats over on this topic:

 

 

@Karlb1 and others I’d love to hear about your experience of the tadoº Smart Thermostat once it’s installed…..


29 replies

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Hi Tim, as I’ve mentioned elsewhere, I’ve only just joined the forum and don’t have a TADO system but I do have the Drayton Wiser system with a controller and TRV’s on most radiators.

I wrote a bit more about my experience here:

Have you got a smart thermostat? Then we'd love to hear from you! | The OVO Forum (ovoenergy.com)

There is also a good (and long) thread about the Wiser system here:

https://www.automatedhome.co.uk/reviews/drayton-wiser-smart-heating-controls-review-part-4-1-year-older-much-wiser.html

Userlevel 1
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Is this offer open to forum members, or just OVO Energy customers?

Userlevel 7
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OVO Energy customers only I’m afraid. Sorry!

The OVO Forum is mainly volunteer led and runs independently of most of OVO’s operations. This forum is open to everyone regardless of supplier and makes no money by itself, so it’s unfortunately not possible to extend this kind of offer to forum members as well.

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Yes another OVO offer where you need to have gas to qualify. I'm very disappointed in them.

Userlevel 7

Hi @nealmurphy - Sorry for the delayed response on this one. We’d taken your comments away to the Smart Home team to query why this was only available to dual-fuel member.

 

For a bit of context they’ve advised:

 

Through this offer, we allow customers to "connect" their Tado account to their OVO account. This sends the heating data from Tado to OVO. We then match this with their smart, half-hourly, gas consumption data to provide hints, tips & info about their home heating. If a customer doesn't have a gas supply with OVO we don't have this data and therefore can't provide these insights. As the insights are a core part of the product we want to ensure a customer has everything they need to get the best out of their Tado.

 

Hope this helps explain the reasoning behind this. :slight_smile:

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Hope this helps explain the reasoning behind this. :slight_smile:

Thanks for trying @Jess_OVO  I appreciate the response. It doesn’t really explain the reasoning behind it as the Tado website says it works with most heating systems and most heat pumps. Therefore you don’t necessarily need a gas supply to use Tado, but obviously the vast majority of people do still has gas boilers.

Thanks for trying.

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I bought a Tado from OVO. I won't work work our boiler. I have a long and very detailed email thread back and forth with Tado before I bought it, to check compatibility. They said yes. It arrived. The app can't give installation instructions for our Vaillant Boiler. So more emails with Tado. Finally they have admitted it's not compatible with any boiler that uses ebus communication, meaning all Vaillant boilers. It can be fitted but it won't work at its most smart, some features won't work. 

 

So how to return it please? I've emailed smarthome at OVO. Nothing. I managed to speak to someone on the phone a few weeks ago and I was promised a reply paid return bag. Nothing has arrived. I work in the week, not open at weekends. So I still don't have an address to return it to. 

 

Help anyone? Please?

 

Kim

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Welcome back @Gum168 :)

That’s a pretty good one actually. I’ve tried to look around for a return address, but there doesn’t seem to be one listed anywhere that I can find as a forum volunteer. The best I’ve found is over at https://www.ovoenergy.com/smart-home/smart-thermostat under how to return the device. If you contact the Smart Home Team again, they can chase this up for you and send out another returns kit.

The best ways to contact them would be either via:

Email - smarthome@ovoenergy.com 

Phone - 0330 102 7423 which is open on weekdays 9am to 5pm iirc.

Someone should get back to you within two working days to follow up on this. It’s possible that the first one got lost in the post somehow, which can happen sometimes so hopefully a second one gets through. They’re best placed to help with anything to do with the Tado offer, since it’s managed by that team specifically.

It doesn’t look like I’d be able to get hold of the returns address myself unless I needed to return a Tado that I bought from OVO, but I’ve never had one myself and I suspect the returns kit might also be personalised to each request.

Hope this helps.

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Thank you. 

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I bought a Tado from OVO. I won't work work our boiler. I have a long and very detailed email thread back and forth with Tado before I bought it, to check compatibility. They said yes. It arrived. The app can't give installation instructions for our Vaillant Boiler. So more emails with Tado. Finally they have admitted it's not compatible with any boiler that uses ebus communication, meaning all Vaillant boilers. It can be fitted but it won't work at its most smart, some features won't work. 

 

So how to return it please? I've emailed smarthome at OVO. Nothing. I managed to speak to someone on the phone a few weeks ago and I was promised a reply paid return bag. Nothing has arrived. I work in the week, not open at weekends. So I still don't have an address to return it to. 

 

Help anyone? Please?

 

Kim

Hi, Kim.

You don't mention your model of boiler. I have a Vaillant Ecotec 831 Plus, fitted in 2011. I installed Tado in October this year. Initially the connection was a like for like replacement for my previous dumb timer/thermostat, with simple on/off relay switching. After a couple of days operating like that I swapped it to e-Bus mode.

It works completely as expected with e-Bus, modulating the requested temperature from the boiler to suit the heating demand.

I did have some correspondence with Tado support recently about e-Bus and it is quite evident that not all support staff are well informed. I was told initially that it does not work, but that flies in the face of correspondence from Tado support in their forums and my own personal experience. It also flies in the face of their own professional installation literature, which I followed to set up my e-Bus.

Look at the low voltage installation instructions here, where there is a section specifically for Vaillant e-Bus.…

https://www.tado.com/professional-manuals

Maybe your boiler really is not compatible, but I wouldn't necessarily accept the first answer you receive from Tado support. You might wish to dig deeper.

 

Cheers,

Tim.

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Hi Tim. Thank you for the reply. I had email conversations with several different people at Tado, and there's some considerable confusion about ebus connections. 

I'll try and be brief, but the conflicting advice at the time did have us really confused.

So, our daughter and her husband have Tado connected to a Vaillant boiler. So I assumed it would be fine with any Vaillant. To be sure though, I contacted Tado before buying to get confirmation. Initially despite me giving very detailed model numbers and set up info they clearly didn't know what we had, emails back and forth with me explaining, and finally I got a Yes, it's compatible. Our set up isn't the usual wired dumb wall thermostat, and I think that may partly be the problem and Tado certainly needed a lot of explaining. We don't have a combi boiler for a start and they kept using the word combi in the emails. We have a hot water tank. Then the thermostat is also the controller/timer all in one, and it's wireless with batteries so we can move it around round the house. There's something wired into the boiler housing that talks wirelessly to both the timer/thermostat and a controller installed next to the hot water tank upstairs to control the 3 way valve for hot water, heating, or both at the same time. So that's our set up. 

A normal wired to the wall Tado might have been easier, but then again depending on who you talked to, maybe not. 

I talked to our son in law and he immediately said yes, the Tado does control the heating, but they have a combi boiler. He can use the app to deal with times and settings etc, but the full "smart" facilities don't work with ebus. If it was fully smart there are extra features. I don't know the full details, but I believe it's to do with the weather and how high the heating runs. So on v cold days with info from the the internet the Tado would know to run the boiler at its highest temperature and if you use geo fencing it'll turn on sooner than on a less cold day. If it's really cold it will keep the heating on v low in the background to prevent freezing, but when it's mild it runs the boiler at a lower temperature. Basically it avoids peaks and troughs of temperatures that occur with a normal fully on or fully off system. Ebus is the only way that Vaillant allows that extra level of control of their boilers unfortunately. 

Our existing thermostat/timer is pretty sophisticated all ready with very flexible timing options, but we can't control it from the internet and the heating is either fully on or off and no smart TRVs. We wanted the extra bells and whistles of full smart features and it turns out the ONLY way to get that is to install Vaillant's own kit. At about 3 times the price. 🙁

I have since looked into this extensively, and it's true, you can only turn your Vaillant heating system fully smart with their own kit. Nest, Hive, Netatmo, all the same as Tado. All it does is turns your system into one you can control via the internet. Sadly this isn't well publicised. None of the smart control manufacturers really make the extra features clear in their marketing, nor that not all will be available on all boilers. Pretty poor really. 

Anyway, hey ho. We were thinking about Vaillant controls, but now there's talk of the new government grants towards heat pumps coming next year, and with our boiler being 13 years old now, we will probably wait until April and review at that point. 

I hope your Vaillant boiler does give you full smart functionality, but it may not. You may not be aware of that on a daily basis, but all I know is, the up to date Tado can't communicate with ebus. That is the only thing that everyone at Tado did agree on. Having said this, if you had a basic dumb thermostat previously, then it's definitely a better upgrade for you than it is for us. 

Kim

 

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All I can say is that the smart stuff is working for us and Tado can request whatever temperature it wishes from the boiler. I've been monitoring the boiler extremely closely with Tado installed. I have thermometers attached to flow and return pipes and use the Vaillant display to verify the requested and actual temperatures. Tado can certainly call for temperatures as low as (IIRC) 33C, all the way up to whatever maximum limit I have set on the boiler, and anything in between. And that's what the boiler delivers.

 

Here are the thermometers on the boiler, showing ambient room temperature, flow and return.

I have also placed Bluetooth logging thermometers on each radiator. The reading may not be perfect, but it should be close enough to provide insight into what is really happening. Taking the master bedroom as an example, we start heating it at 20:00 and stop at 09:00. This is the temperature profile of the radiator through the night, pretty steady, low temperature, with no big swings from high too low.

E-Bus is definitely working for us.

 

 

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So this is why I'm peeved with Vaillant and Tado. Talk to each other please. Why are customers left feeling so confused.

 

One thing I didn't say was, I have had a written apology from Tado for giving the misleading information regarding our Vaillant system. As in they told me it would work, but later after it had arrived told me it wouldn't. 

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This was the last reply I had from Tado.

 

-  Yes, it was my mistake that I did not properly inform you. The main issue is the wiring, and that is because the boiler uses a digital interface on which we can connect our devices. The problem is that the receivers that are made for the UK do not support that function, because system boilers do not use it. The Extension Kits were compatible with all kind of devices, but it turned out to be a waste of resources in the UK, as the digital interface was used only in a small percentage of cases. That is why we opted to take out that component out of the new receivers.

I apologize again for wasting your time, and I hope that you will find a suitable solution for your heating -

And earlier reply

-Thank you for contacting us about your Wireless Receiver and whether you can connect it to a digital combi-boiler.

In September of 2020, tado° introduced the new Wireless Smart Thermostat - Starter Kit, which included the all new Wireless Receiver (incl. programmer with hot water control). This device was developed for the UK market and does not support digital BUS interfaces. As a result, the Wireless Smart Thermostat - Starter Kit you have cannot be used with a digital combi-boiler.

When we objectively looked at the UK market and the use of relay and digital interfaces, the amount of Extension Kits that were connected to digital interfaces was negligible. Therefore, the choice was made to make a Wireless Receiver solely controlled by relay-controlled combi and system boilers. It is important to note that the Extension Kit was mainly used to control system boilers (S-Plan, Y-Plan) and for those systems, BUS interfaces are not compatible anyway.

This choice to only support Relay interfaces had the following advantages:

  • We could offer the device at a competitive price point because the device did not require the expensive BUS electronics.
  • The wiring became less confusing, leading to less mistakes being made during installation.
  • The configuration of the interface type is possible on the device itself because there were only 3 options to choose from.
  • The device could now be fitted with hardware test buttons.

I notice they are talking about 2020 versions onwards. Does anyone have older versions? Is that why there is confusion?

Ebus is the digital interface. However, again I will say, we have a Vaillant wireless thermostat all ready, it just isn't smart and needs us to manually set the times and temp etc. It may be that this bit of kit is the mainly incompatible part. 

 

​​​​​Kim

Userlevel 5

All I can say is that the smart stuff is working for us and Tado can request whatever temperature it wishes from the boiler.

That’s cool that Tado supports eBus - but do we think it is only devices pre September 2020?


I bought into the Nest system back in 2016, then moved to a house with a Valliant boiler. I have the Nest working “calling for heat”, but not modulation. I did briefly look into buying a opentherm/eBus module from the Netherlands, as Nest supports opentherm, but decided against it due to grumpy warnings from Vailllant about invalidating warranties.

Does anyone have any idea how you would calculate savings on modulation vs non-modulation? My plumber thought it wouldn’t be large sums per year.

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@Mw2870 I'd also be interested in the modulation Vs non modulation comparison.

 

And thank you for putting a name to that. I sort of know what it is, but didn't know the terminology. 😀

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All I can say is that the smart stuff is working for us and Tado can request whatever temperature it wishes from the boiler.

That’s cool that Tado supports eBus - but do we think it is only devices pre September 2020?


I bought into the Nest system back in 2016, then moved to a house with a Valliant boiler. I have the Nest working “calling for heat”, but not modulation. I did briefly look into buying a opentherm/eBus module from the Netherlands, as Nest supports opentherm, but decided against it due to grumpy warnings from Vailllant about invalidating warranties.

Does anyone have any idea how you would calculate savings on modulation vs non-modulation? My plumber thought it wouldn’t be large sums per year.

I honestly don't know about e-Bus with boilers or boilers of different ages other than my own. I'm not a heating engineer, just a home owner. I did do some research and it looks like at some point the control board was upgraded and the newer version possibly would not play nice with e-Bus. Fortunately, for me, I guess my ten year old boiler was ancient enough.

 

I don't recall exactly where I saw the comments about the controller board, but I think it was somewhere within this forum, possibly others too - https://www.diynot.com/diy/search/208392992/?q=Tado+vaillant&o=relevance&c[node]=7

 

Regarding energy savings, again, beyond my skills and experience to comment. The important thing for condensing boilers, such as mine, is to keep the return temperature below 54C in order to maintain condensing function. 54C is really the upper ceiling. Lower is better for maximum condensing efficiency. As for any other boiler types I'm afraid I haven't got a clue. Sorry.

 

BTW, I'm still new to all this stuff. I only started taking an interest a month ago when I discovered that none of my 33 year old dumb TRVs were actually working. Not one of them opened and closed with temperature changes. They had become manual on/off wheellhead valves and had probably been like that for years. That's when I started looking for new TRVs and happened upon Tado. Initially I just bought only the TRVs, but quickly (two days later) added the smart thermostat and a couple of days after that swapped from relay operation to e-Bus, knowing it would be just as easy to swap back if it didn't work out.

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It's really annoying now to find that Tado did support ebus but now don't! That feels like a backward step 🙁

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While I don’t know about your system, We have an older Worcester Bosch boiler that doesn’t have OpenTherm even though our Drayton Wiser smart system supports it. We had a wireless simple thermostat which I disabled at the boiler end when I put the Wiser in.

The Wiser system has a totally standard mounting plate and it was as simple to install as taking the old controller (a simple timer control) off the wall, leaving the mounting plate behind and then clipping the Wiser to the mounting plate - job done!

Maybe check to see whether there is a standard controller somewhere with the standard plate on it - if there is, you should be able to connect any controller to it. Of course, if they havent included the OpenTherm connection on that mount, then you still won’t get the fine-grained modulation support.

In terms of whether such systems actually save money though - I would say that they do only sometimes. I have spoken to people in the Node-RED forums who have clearly saved money with a smart system. But I am fairly safe in saying that we do not. Bear in mind though that we live in a large, Victorian end-terrace with solid stone/rubble walls on 2 sides and solid brick on the other. And we are quite exposed, especially from Northerly weather but also from the SE. And we are in Sheffield in the North. So not ideal from an energy-saving perspective :disappointed_relieved:

What you do gain though is better control and more comfort. So we don’t have to keep the house at the same balance of temperatures all the time and can adjust things better.

I suspect that what happened with us was that what we saved by using a smart system with lots of TRV’s, we lost by being more comfortable :sunglasses: . But also, with such a large thermal mass to heat, it is hard to guess at the background level of heat needed to maintain a base temperature - because it can take a couple of days to make the house comforable in the winter if the heating has been off for any time.

 

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Thanks Julian. Unfortunately our Vaillant boiler doesn't use open therm at all. The only way to get the fully smart control is with ebus. And I've searched and searched and I can't find any other smart controls that will work except the Vaillant own system. 

 

If anyone knows of anything that works with ebus other than Vaillant please let me know. 

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My previous research only turned up the Vaillant VR33 link module - but I never tried one..

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I've been digging a bit and refreshing my memory. The Vaillant VR65 controller (fitted to my Ecotec 831 Plus) is compatible with Tado for e-Bus control. It was superseded by the VR-66, with which Tado is not compatible. I have no idea about any other boilers or controllers. I only researched for my own needs.

According to this sales site the VR-65 became obsolete in May 2018.…

https://www.mytub.co.uk/vaillant-ecotec-vr65-control-centre-product-107906

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Thanks eezytiger. We do have the vr65, with an ecotec plus 630 and vrt 360f, which is the wireless thermostat/timer. 

I had also read that the vr65 is compatible, but there is something I think about the most current Tado. To install and get it working I had to go through the app. But it flat refused to recognise our system. I emailed 2 different places at Tado. And as I said before, after multiple back and forths eventually both people at Tado admitted it won't connect to our system. I had asked for specific email instructions and they couldn't supply them.

Maybe that is only since 2020, but either way, after a week of trying to find a way round it, I admitted defeat and returned the Tado. 

Kim

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Hey, Kim,

You might be just as well off without e-Bus. I've actually reverted my system to relay switching today. The reason is that my boiler is far too powerful to modulate down to the temperatures Tado is requesting. As it's relatively mild - 13C - there isn't much heating demand. Tado is requesting modest temperatures from the boiler once everything is up to cruising speed. e.g. Tado might want a little top up from the boiler at just 33C flow, but the water in the system is still at 31C because it cools so slowly with such a small differential to room temperatures.

At a minimum output of 9kW my boiler can't keep things simmering at 33C. It reaches that in about 30 seconds, shuts off the burner, goes into pump overrun for five minutes and then enters anti-cycling mode until it's ready to rinse and repeat. This is quite useless. No new heat makes it to the radiators. It's all just a wasted effort/energy/expense

There are times when it is fine, such as when a new room comes online and needs a serious burst of heat, but for tickling along at maintenance temperatures it's not working out too well. So I've returned to relay switching with a manually set flow temperature. The boiler can now add some proper heat to the radiators and then take a breather instead of all this silly short cycling. I'm still careful to check return temperatures to make sure the boiler is condensing. No problems there.

I don't think this is a Tado fault. It's the nature of having a boiler that's massively oversized for the task and radiators designed for high flow temperatures, coupled with a sophisticated TRV setup that really can close down everything. A minimum 9kW boiler output (max is 24kW) is hopeless when you have a single "1kW" radiator putting out maybe 100W from a tepid supply. Where is all the heat supposed to go?

So, even without e-Bus, Tado is still doing a great job of giving me complete control of times and temperatures in every room, day and night. I'm still completely happy with the system. It's the boiler that needs a good talking to.

Cheers,

Tim.

Userlevel 2

I bought a Tado from OVO. I won't work work our boiler. I have a long and very detailed email thread back and forth with Tado before I bought it, to check compatibility. They said yes. It arrived. The app can't give installation instructions for our Vaillant Boiler. So more emails with Tado. Finally they have admitted it's not compatible with any boiler that uses ebus communication, meaning all Vaillant boilers. It can be fitted but it won't work at its most smart, some features won't work. 

 

So how to return it please? I've emailed smarthome at OVO. Nothing. I managed to speak to someone on the phone a few weeks ago and I was promised a reply paid return bag. Nothing has arrived. I work in the week, not open at weekends. So I still don't have an address to return it to. 

 

Thanks for this, I was considering getting the Tado but there doesn’t seem to be any compatibility info so you can make an informed choice before buying the Tado. I’ve seen this issue highlighted on other forums outside OVO as well.

As we have a Vaillant (ECOTec plus 618 system boiler with VRT 392f wireless control with VR 65 control centre), I don’t think I’ll be getting a Tado when it doesn’t look like it’s ever going to work especially if I can’t get the compatibility confirmation before actually buying it.

The smart radiator thermostats look interesting as well but I’m not going to buy a smart thermostat that isn’t capable of maximising the efficient use of the boiler itself, which seems to be the case from this thread unless anybody can explain the situation in a way that I am not missing something!

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