Ecobee's "Aux Heat Runtime Alert" sets the amount of time that the auxiliary heat source can run continuously before an alert is generated. Auxiliary heat is the backup or secondary heat that assists or takes over for your heat pump. In New Hampshire, auxiliary heat is typically a furnace, boiler, or electric strip heater. The default setting for this alert is 3 hours. If your auxiliary heat runs for 3 hours in a day, the alert will be generated. This is typically not cause for concern, in New Hampshire there are many days when the auxiliary heat source or backup heat should take over. The Aux Heat Runtime Alert can be disabled, or the time can be increased to remove or reduce the frequency of the alerts.
Aux Heat Runtime Alert Adjustment
To adjust this alert visit the 3-bar hamburger menu on the bottom left of your Ecobee. Go to Reminders & Alerts > Preferences > Aux Heat Runtime Alert. Choose a new time or hit disable to remove these alerts.
Why is Your Auxiliary Heat Running?
- Outdoor Temperature: If the outdoor temperature is below the minimum compressor temperature in settings, only the auxiliary heat will run. We typically set the outdoor temperature between 15 – 30 degrees Fahrenheit (-9.44 to -1.11 °C), depending on the heat pump capabilities and the homes' insulation values.
- Time: Ecobee uses an algorithm that determines if the heat pump has been running too long. This algorithm looks at indoor and outdoor conditions to determine if the furnace or boiler should run instead of the heat pump.
- Temperature Delta: If the homeowner increases the temperature too much, the Ecobee will run the furnace or boiler to quickly heat the space, and then it will switch back to the heat pump to maintain the space. Heat pumps work best with one set temperature. Ecobee use an algorithm to determine the delta based on indoor and outdoor conditions. Some days it may be a 2-degree difference that cause the switch to back up heat, and some days it maybe be 10-degrees. The Ecobee is trying to heat your home in the most efficient manner possible.