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15 Dec 2021

Which? testing reveals the best smart radiator valves

Find the best smart radiator valve to install in your home with the results from our latest testing
person controlling smart radiator valve from phone

Smart radiator valves let you remotely schedule your homes temperature room-by-room, letting you take control of, and ideally save money on, your energy this winter.

So, if your home is cold, but you're scared about increasing your heating bills, here's our round up of the most popular smart radiator valves, including models from Netatmo, Tado and Eve.

Read on to learn more about the brands we've tested and if a smart radiator valve is right for you.

Just want to know which are the best? Head straight to our smart radiator valve reviews

Smart radiator valves tested

Smart radiator valves (also called smart radiator thermostats) work in the same way as traditional thermostatic radiator valves; they control the temperature of individual rooms, but with smart valves you can set the temperature remotely using your smartphone.

When paired with a smart thermostat, smart radiator valves allow you to set up fully programmable heating zones. For example, you can just have the heating on in your office during work hours, then swap to only heating the living room and kitchen for the evening.

Although more expensive than traditional thermostatic radiator valves, smart valves give you greater control over your heating schedule, and the potential to make even greater energy savings than a smart thermostat on its own.

Read on to see the latest smart valves we've tested.

Hive radiator valve

Hive radiator valve

With a minimalist design, and LCD display to show the temperature, the Hive smart radiator valve integrates into the rest of the Hive ecosystem, allowing you to create 'actions'. For example, with one click you could dim the smart lights and boost your heating for a cosy TV night.

But does it get the basics right - heating your home to the right temperature? Read our full Hive radiator valve review to find out.

Honeywell EvoHome radiator valve

Honeywell EvoHome radiator valve

The Honeywell smart radiator valve has a LCD display that can be tilted up to easily see the rooms temperature. It also comes packed with features including frost protection, open window detection, and a child lock when paired with the EvoHome controller.

The valve has features, but is the accompanying app easy enough to use to make the most of them? Read our full Honeywell EvoHome radiator valve review to find out more.

Netatmo smart radiator valve

Netatmo smart radiator valve

If you're after a splash of colour, this valve comes with four adhesive strips to customise its trim. It's LCD display permanently shows the current room temperature (arguably more useful than showing the set temperature) and comes with a range of features such as open window detection.

We put the valve in a temperature controlled chamber, to accurately test how well it functions. Read our full Netatmo smart radiator valve review to find out how it performed.

Tado smart radiator thermostat

Tado smart radiator thermostat

Shipping with six adapters, the Tado smart radiator valve should be suitable for almost any radiator. A digital LED display makes the design stand out from the crowd, plus with a simple control knob to change the temperature, the valve should be easy to install and use.

But did our testers agree? Read our full Tado smart radiator thermostat review to find out.

Other smart radiator valves tested

Need more help understanding smart heating? Read our guide on how to buy the best smart thermostat

Do you need smart radiator valves?

person looking at graphs showing their energy usag

For most people, yes. Smart radiator valves offer greater control and convenience, plus they can help you save money by reducing the amount of energy you use to heat your home.

But like all technology, it ultimately comes down to what you need from your heating controls and how you plan to use it. If you're unlikely to use smart valves to reduce how often your heating is on you're unlikely to save money in the long run.

Smart radiator valve pros

  • Control valves remotely You don't have to go to each room to change the settings like traditional thermostatic radiator valves (TRVs)
  • Set temperature in celsius This is more intuitive than the 0-5 scale that's on traditional TRVs.
  • See how much you're using your heating Many of the apps allow you to monitor your energy use, making it easier to see where you can save money.

Smart radiator valve cons

  • Price They typically cost between £35 and £80 each, about five times more than a traditional TRV
  • You won't get the full benefits without a smart thermostat Otherwise the valves cannot communicate with your boiler to turn it on and off, so your radiators will only heat up if the heating is already turned on.
  • Locked into a brand Most smart radiator valves are only compatible with that brand's ecosystem. If you already have a smart thermostat, you'll more than likely have to get that company's valve.

couple on a laptop

Who will save money with smart radiator valves

  • Those who want to make a lifestyle change Smart heating empowers you to make changes, giving greater control and transparency on how you heat your home
  • Those who already have a smart thermostat It will cost you less overall to add smart radiator valves, and can offer further savings with room-by-room control
  • Those with rooms that are often not in use If there are lots of empty bedrooms during the school day, for example, or if the living room doesn't get used until the evening, smart valves can let you make sure those rooms aren't heated when no one is around.

Who won't save as much with smart radiator valves

  • Those that won't use the smart features If you're likely to forget to use the app, or unlikely use the extra features to change how you currently heat their home, the amount you'll save on heating will be less
  • Those with a poorly insulated home If heat easily leaks out your house, installing loft insulation or double glazing first will improve the energy efficiency of your home, and give greater savings than installing smart valves
  • Those planning to move property in the next few years Unless you take them with you on the move, you may not have time to recoup the higher costs of installing smart valves through the savings you make on your heating bills.

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Which? smart radiator valve reviews

hand pressing a button on a smart radiator valve

Which? testing of smart devices goes above and beyond other reviews:

  • We buy every radiator valve we review - so our opinion is honest and unbiased.
  • We score based on lab tests - ensuring there is no unconscious bias and that when we say a valve functions well, there is the data to back it up.
  • We carry out privacy and security testing - if there are any vulnerabilities we'll find them and let you know, something other reviews won't.

Only a smart radiator valve that performs well in all our test areas will become a Best Buy, meaning you can be confident in spending your money.

Read our full expert guide on how smart radiator valves work to get the most out of your smart heating

Keep warm and save in cold weather

Smart radiator valves are not the only way to keep your home warm while keeping the heating bills under control.

If you haven't already, consider getting a boiler timer or programmer. This allows you to schedule when your heating is on, so you only heat your home when you're in it. A smart thermostat will allow you to do this remotely through your smartphone.

Read our guides on boiler controls and tips to reduce your heating bills.