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Minimal effort, 2`000 gigawatt hours per year savings.

Coop Zeitung, 28. Februar 2022

If Switzerland's second homes were equipped with remote-controlled heating, a total of more than 2,000 gigawatt hours of energy could be saved each year.

Also possible with myTEM - remote control via smartphone and tablet; always protected against frost and warm on arrival..

Residence with saving potential

If you have a second home or a chalet in the mountains, you can cut your heating costs significantly - using an app. Thanks to remote control, it's always comfortably warm when the vacation home is really in use.

Winter in the mountains - a dream in white, which has come true for many people from the lowlands with their own vacation home. Spending the entire season up there, however, is granted to very few. Nevertheless, second home owners have to heat their homes, and not only to prevent frost damage in the uninhabited chalet or apartment. It is also a question of comfort: in order to be able to use the apartment at short notice, for example at the weekend, the temporary mountain dwellers want to have it nice and warm on arrival and not freeze in the first few hours.

Practical online guide

The fact that this can be done much more cost-effectively with the help of a modern heating control system can be quickly calculated on the Make Heat Simple website and, thanks to the support of experts, can be implemented without much effort. The idea behind it is simple: instead of heating permanently to 15 to 18 degrees as usual, you lower the heating to the minimum when you're away - about 12 degrees for an apartment and about 6 degrees for a chalet. This is all that is needed to ensure that the uninhabited domicile does not suffer any damage. Depending on the number of days the apartment is used and its location and size, heating costs of around 200 to 800 francs per year can be saved.

The heater listens to the cell phone

The technical solution is just as simple as this calculation: so that you can enjoy the warmth of your vacation home from the very first moment, you give the heating the command to switch up in good time before you leave home. This requires nothing more than smart thermostats that can be controlled via app, cell phone or Internet. Corresponding solutions are available today for almost every variant - radiators, underfloor heating or electric heating. To select the optimal solution, you can turn to local experts, who can be found on "Make Heat Simple".

An investment in remote control of the heating system usually pays for itself after a few years, according to EnergieSchweiz, the federal government's support program for energy efficiency and renewable energies, which initially launched the "Make Heat Simple" platform as a pilot project in Valais in 2019. In the meantime, most vacation regions are working with the program. Given that there are around 700,000 second homes across Switzerland, SwissEnergy sees huge potential for savings in this area.

More than just a question of cost

If each of these apartments were equipped with remote-controlled heating, a total of over 2,000 gigawatt hours of energy could be saved per year compared to today, the experts at SwissEnergy have calculated. That would be about as much as all the households in Bern and Lausanne together consume in energy per year. Or the equivalent of around 200 million Swiss francs in heating costs. Last but not least, this would also benefit climate protection, because lower energy consumption would also reduce CO2 emissions in Switzerland by more than 600,000 tons per year.

Currently, only about five percent of second homes have heating with remote control. A competition (see box) is therefore now offering additional incentives for retrofitting.


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