Generac buys Ecobee

Just got an end of year message from the CEO at Ecobee. They have been purchased by Generac, a Wisconsin-based manufacturer of power products including portable, residential, commercial and industrial generators, as well as the leading designer and manufacturer of manual and fully automatic transfer switches and accessories for backup power applications up to 2 MW.

I’m highlighting this on the Sense forum because these guys also bought a former Sense competitor, Neurio, that was my second choice about 4 years ago when I was shopping. Neurio has since kind of given up on device detection and focused in on realtime usage and solar monitoring, and was purchased by Generac in 2019.


I just replaced my Neurio with a sense this month. I used the Neurio for the last 4 years. It was alright, the device detection was not near as good as Sense is. I personally feel that since Generac bought it the product went downhill. I am not an Ecobee User, i use Honeywell Lyric T9 T-stats in my home so i cannot comment if that product will change much or not. This might be a perfect oppertunity for sense to drop the ecobee integration and move onto the Honeywell Lyric integration instead which would be nice?


Thanks for your thoughts and experiences with Neurio. I’m hoping that Ecobee keeps around the things I valued the most, the OAuth2 API and data export, even if the functionality doesn’t expand. As for Sense:

  • I’m hoping that the Sense announcement below means Sense is taking a bit more of the lead in how to pull power data from big load smart devices, like EVs and HVAC, as well as controlling them, instead of doing one-offs for every new EV and thermostat.
    Sense Launches Open Source Effort to Accelerate Electrification of Homes Without Costly Service Upgrades

  • I think the current integrations (smart plugs, Ecobee, Hue) offer good models on how future integrations could work. I think the first round was needed to understand what the real issues and challenges are in the real world at-scale.


I’ve definitely setup about every thermostat that you can. One of the main draw back with the ecobee model is you can not have multiple users in their software for geofencing. You have to use 3rd party location services like Life360 with IFTTT. Their geofencing part is pretty finicky as well and it has an on board motion sensor that helps unless your in a hallway. They have a solution for that which is an $80 motion sensor though If you are replacing an older stat that was made within the last 15 years… You better get a place to cover behind or its going to look terrible. Its 100% cloud locked but has a lot if available integrations and I do like their home IQ info. I’ve seen some of them work very well on legacy controls and other that would just randomly run when it wanted and wouldn’t stay connected to Wi-Fi. I dealt with 1 that wouldn’t turn the fan off until we did a full reset on the thermostat. That one ended up doing the same thing a week later.

I called their customer service 1 time… that was funny. Hopefully Generac can at least fix some of ecobee’s issues. I have a Generac GP5500 myself, but I have heard their customer service and warranty services are terrible as well.

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Indeed RT-PMP seems like the only scalable way to “electrify everything” vs a more bottom-up approach with proprietary thermostats and so on. This is a great move and I think Sense is in a perfect position to do some very powerful stuff at government-influencing scale:

  • NYC seems to have folded under pressure from developers to allow new natural gas powered buildings, for a few years, while NYS (Governor) wants to outlaw it now. Meanwhile NYC is woefully undersupplied with renewable energy and new high voltage DC feeds from Canadian hydro are in the works. Everybody gets an EV? How many more terawatts is the city going to use?

  • In Upstate NY (me) where there is the largest concentration in the U.S. of homes using heating oil and oil-fired boilers there is a HUGE decarbonization challenge. Meaning: much more significant (and challenging) to get everything electrified here than elsewhere. How do you migrate a 100k+ BTU oil boiler in a decidedly NON-PASSIVE HAUS to electricity with, at best, a ground sourced heat pump with an energy gain of 4 or even 6 if your regional supply is limited. En-masse energy migration changes all the metrics, fast.

  • Generac: Installing propane or gasoline powered generators will become anachronistic and households will have to get more reliable electricity (very expensive) or exploit rooftop solar + batteries AND local renewables generation and RT-PMP to smooth everything out without having to change transformers and feed wires.

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