Ecobee Occupied Vs. Unoccupied: Everything Explained

Updated on

We use affiliate links and may receive a small commission on purchases. Read more about us

Home » Ecobee » Ecobee Occupied Vs. Unoccupied: Everything Explained
Photo of author
Written By Dinu Sri

Dr H. T. D. S. Madusanka is an electronic expert with 10 years of experience, involved in the research and development of SMART HOME systems.

In our Ecobee occupied vs. unoccupied review, we’ll discuss everything you need to know. Keep reading.

What does Occupied mean on Ecobee?

Ecobee sensors have motion sensors that detect room occupancy. Occupied means there’s activity inside a room.

You can place the Ecobee in areas around your home where you feel there’s much traffic. In this way, the smart functions such as Follow Me or Home and Away will detect occupied rooms in your home.

You can use the sensors in either too cold or hot areas in your home to get an optimal temperature balance.

How Does Ecobee Know When You Are Away?

Smart Home/Away watches the arrivals and departures of your family members. It adjusts the temperature accordingly using data from the built-in occupancy sensor* on your ecobee thermostat and the Room Sensors connected to your ecobee.

What Is Follow Me In Ecobee?

Your ecobee can better control the temperature in inhabited rooms by using the Follow Me feature. Using sensors that have recently identified occupancy in temperature averaging, if these sensors are included in the current Comfort Setting, the ecobee follows me.

How does Ecobee know if a room is occupied?

The people detection feature of an Ecobee sensor is a state of the art function not present in most remote sensors.  

Similarly, the Ecobee design is impressive, has a long battery life, and can pair a wide range of up to 60ft. Installation is easy since it has a magnetic adhesive and various placement designs.

After a smart thermostat installation, you can set your ideal temperature and choose your comfort level.

Ecobee sensors will detect the active areas in your house and are smart enough to figure out how to ensure you get optimal comfort.

Although other sensors will not detect humidity levels in the house, an Ecobee sensor can detect.

They use infrared radiation to detect objects, whether they’re dark-colored or light. These then connect to base units by use of radiofrequency.

An Ecobee can connect to up to 32 sensors and is a money saver that can reduce your energy bill by a whopping 23%.

Ecobee smart sensor vs. room sensor

In analyzing the Ecobee smart sensor vs. room sensor, we’ll look at the functionality of each. Unlike a room sensor, an Ecobee smart sensor can detect temperature as well as occupancy.

It functions by supplementing the built-in occupancy sensors, including temperature sensors, to unlock the full potential of your Ecobee.

Ecobee smart sensor lets you get temperature readings in your home remotely. It uses a 915 MHz band for sending signals to the thermostat, and even more incredibly, it can work at a distance of approximately 60feet.

On the other hand, a room sensor uses the same 915MHZ band to transmit signals, but the distance is only 45 feet.

Ecobee only works where there is an internet connection. With WIFI, you can get the temperature and local weather data through the Ecobee portal.

Using your PC or smart devices, you can access information remotely from anywhere on the go.

Ecobee sensors can support several homes HVAC systems as well as dual-fuel, gas, electrical, and oil systems.

It’s worth noting that a room sensor can only detect the temperature in the room it’s been installed.

Therefore, you may experience different temperatures in different rooms’ known as hot and cold spots areas.

It can be uncomfortable living in such a house. On the contrary, an Ecobee sensor lets you know the temperature in all rooms.   Thus, you’ll have precise information about different temperature ranges in your house.

Ecobee SmartsensorEcobee Room Sensor
Enhanced Occupancy Sensor With “Pet Immunity”No “Pet Imunity”
60 Ft. Range From Thermostat45 Ft. Range From Thermostat
Viewing Angle: 140° Horizontal And 100° Vertical.Viewing Angle: 120° Horizontal And 25–30° Vertical.
Occupancy Sensor Range: 20 Ft.Occupancy Sensor Range: Not Specified
5 Year Battery Life1 Year Battery Life
Pair Using Ecobee AppPairing Requires Going To The Thermostat
New Rounded Design With Metal BaseMore Square Design

How long do Ecobee sensors stay occupied?

How long do Ecobee sensors stay occupied?  It has a Follow Me function that encompasses all the sensors that detect occupancy in a certain area within thirty minutes.

When someone leaves a room, the sensor immediately halts the sensing motion. The earlier temperature readings stay in your Ecobee sensor for thirty minutes.

How to set occupied on your Ecobee sensor

Step 01: Start by tapping your finger on the device. Slowly drag towards the right hand and select the temperature you’d like for your home in your absence.

Step 02: Click save bottom at the extreme corner. You can select your desired heat readings when not at home.

Ecobee Sensor unoccupied while sleeping.

After pairing the room sensor to the Ecobee thermostat, you can choose the setting such as Sleep, Home, and Away.

For instance, if you put the sensor in the bedroom and don’ intend to spend time in the room when awake, you can select SLEEP COMFORT mode.

Therefore, temperature settings do not change whether the room is occupied or unoccupied.

For you to get accurate Ecobee Sensor unoccupied while sleeping readings, place your sensor at least five feet from the ground in such a way that it faces the bedroom.

You can avoid areas where there is interference, such as near vents or fans. Similarly, direct sunlight can affect occupancy changes detection.

Ecobee sensor false occupancy

In some instances, your Ecobee sensors may show false occupancy even when you’re away from home. It can be due to a low battery charge or problems with your battery.

Typically, the Ecobee uses a CR-2032 battery with a lifespan of one year.

After one year, you’ll need to replace it so that your Ecobee gives accurate readings. Some factors may cause the battery to deteriorate fast, such as placing your device with high traffic.

Locations with low/high ambient temperatures can contribute to short battery life.

Another factor that may cause your device to show false reading is pointing the device towards the window where there’s an Infrared source.

To prevent Ecobee sensor false occupancy, it’s crucial to pay key attention to the battery.

Ecobee smart sensor range extender

If you install the sensors far from the thermostat, they may not give accurate information since their optimal range is 45ft. Open-air sensors may have an extended range of up to 100 feet.

For Ecobee sensors, the 45ft limit is due to other things at home, such as walls and furniture that obstruct and reduce the range.  

If there are issues with connectivity, chances are you’ve reached the edge of the range of your Ecobee sensors. However, an Ecobee smart sensor range extender can help increase the distance coverage.

For motion detection, an Ecobee remote sensor can cover a vertical distance of up to 25 and 30 degrees and a horizontal distance of up to 120 degrees. The maximum range advertised is 15ft.

The main advantage these sensors have is that they’re not trigged to detect any motion; for instance, a pet such as a cat passing in the room will not set off the unit.

What is Ecobee unoccupied time?

Ecobee unoccupied time is the time the rooms stay with no activity. Ecobee occupancy is estimated at an interval of five minutes. Hence, your Ecobee doesn’t active the Smart Away or Smart Home setting until five minutes are over.

The Smart Home/Smart Away features are enabled on your thermostat so that it can override your normal schedule for savings where you’re away or comfort when you’re at home.

For instance, if you need to adjust your diary or schedule, the Ecobee changes automatically so that you can save on your energy alongside staying comfortable.

How does Ecobee smartness evolve through generations?

There are many versions of Ecobee generations which include, Ecobee include Ecobee3 ( 1st generation), Ecobee3(2nd generation), Ecobee4, and Ecobee3 Lite. Many devices can support these models at home.

The Fifth generation is Smart thermostat that comes equipped with the voice control feature. This offers a superior experience since you can control the settings using Alexa speakers.

It has several upgrades that include a speedy performance, better speaker, and durable materials.

An ecobee3 lite doesn’t have an internal occupancy sensor but can connect with room sensors to access other smart features such as Follow Me or Home and away mode.

A room sensor can support other applications such as ecobee3, ecoobee4, ecobee3-lite. When upgrading, you only need to unpair the sensor and connect to the new thermostat.

Version Rome sensorsDimensions
SmartWired(5.5 x 3.2 x 1) inches
Smart SiWired(5.5 x 3.2 x 1) inches
ecobee3-1st generationWireless to a maximum of 32 units(3.9 x 3.9 x 0.9) inches
ecobee3 -2nd generationWireless to a maximum of 32 units(4 x 4 x 0.9) inches
ecobee3 liteWireless to a maximum of 32 units(4 x 4 x 0.9) inches
ecobee4Wireless to a maximum of 32 units(4.29 x 4.29 x.1.03) inches
Ecobee smart thermostatWireless to a maximum of 32 units(4.29 x 4.29 x 1) inches

Ecobee Sensor Not Detecting Occupancy

Remove the sensor’s battery by unscrewing the sensor’s rear cover. Remove your ecobee thermostat from the wall and leave it off for around two minutes to do a “power cycle.” Please wait for your ecobee thermostat to charge up before returning it to the socket. Replace the battery in the Room Sensor and place it near your ecobee.

What Is Smart Away on Ecobee?

Among ecobee thermostats, the Smart Recovery option is activated. Your ecobee learns how long it takes your house to reach the desired temperature as you use it more often. The efficiency of your HVAC system will be taken into consideration, as well as the influence of the weather on your house, by your ecobee.

Your thermostat becomes better at forecasting how long it will take to heat your house to a specific temperature as you use it longer. Smart Recovery anticipates a change in your schedule and pre-heats or cools your house accordingly. The system can activate sooner and operate longer if the difference in setpoints between these two Comfort Settings is more significant.

During your allotted time away, let us say the setpoint is 78 degrees; when you return, your set temperature is 72 degrees. The ecobee will use the collected data to turn on your air conditioner before your schedule switches from Away to Home, ensuring that the temperature is already 72 degrees when your Home period begins (as opposed to waiting until the schedule changes and then trying to bring the temperature down from 78 to 72).

For smart away to completely identify how far in advance your equipment should be turned on, it may take several weeks. You could notice that the thermostat is activating sooner than it should, but it will continue to learn the efficiency of your HVAC system and grow more accurate with usage.

To keep your home at the ideal temperature at all times, the smart away function of your ecobee may be activated.

How Accurate Are Ecobee Sensor Refresh Rate?

If you already have an ecobee thermostat, you may use this one. The SmartSensor is configured to produce measurements every 15 seconds and has an accuracy of +/- 1.0F. It will take the two previous values and then average them to the current book.

How Does Ecobee Occupancy Sensor Work?

Investing in technologies that will save money in the long term is a no-brainer. HVAC systems have made houses more comfortable regardless of the weather, but they do so at a price. You are still paying for it if you leave your house all day with the heat or air conditioning on. To avoid this, you must ensure that your house is neither too hot nor too chilly when you return. Ideally, you’d be able to turn your thermostat off before you leave for work and turn it back on when you return home so that your home is at the ideal temperature.

Wouldn’t that be wonderful? As a result, Ecobee has developed an intelligent thermostat that manages the thermostat settings of your home’s HVAC system, but it can only adapt to the room’s current temperature. As a result, the temperature in your hallway maybe a few degrees warmer or lower than you expected, making your house less than ideal. Room sensors from Ecobee operate in tandem with your smart thermostat to monitor the temperature in every room and alter settings appropriately. You may save money and energy by remotely controlling your HVAC system and configuring it to regulate itself.

It’s possible to check the temperature in your house when you’re gone from it using their app. As you may be aware, different home regions have different temperatures. Additionally, you may be able to save money by avoiding using as much heating or cooling in places that are not being utilised, such as empty rooms or basements.

Each room has a different temperature since these sensors may be placed in various locations. In addition, these sensors can tell whether someone is in the room and alter the temperature and lighting accordingly. There is no need for the thermostat to turn itself off if it stays for a lengthy time—passive infrared sensors embedded inside the device work in both dark and light environments.

Continue Reading