Author Topic: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera  (Read 19073 times)

Offline agoodman82

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Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« on: March 21, 2012, 02:23:26 pm »
Hi all,

I am getting ready to purchase Vera 3 and was looking for some thermostat options to paid with the system. Has anyone been successful in getting Vera to recognize the Trane Comfortlink II thermostat (XL950)? It is a really nice-looking unit with a lot of functionality and scheduling settings. I understand that this past fall an update was put out for that unit that allows it to work on the Schlage Link system, which unfortunately requires a monthly fee to use the z-wave connectivity. I'm looking to Vera to avoid paying a monthly fee to use connect to z-wave compatible devices, which is why I'd like to see if anyone here has any experience with the Comfortlink II and has been able to get around the fact that they only want it to link up to a remote device using the Schlage link. From what I understand, other devices that have been specified to only work on the Schlage Link system have been successfully recognized by Vera, so I'm curious if anyone has had luck with this thermostat. Does anyone with any info on the thermostat know if it has a z-wave chip built in? I've searched google and the boards here, but the few links I was able to find don't really provide any answers that are up-to-date. Thanks!

Offline mundyb

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2012, 08:27:29 am »
There's no reason why it wouldn't work.  I'm a Trane dealer and I was going to order one for myself and connect it to Vera.  I think I will go ahead and order it today and see how it goes. 

The problem with stats like the ComfortLink and Carrier's Infinity is that you can't convert the systems to use standard thermostats easily, and without sacrificing functionality. 

I should be able to have the stat tomorrow, and I will try to report back to you by tomorrow night or Saturday.

Offline agoodman82

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2012, 01:09:08 pm »
Thanks mundyb, that would be great! When you brought up sacrificing functionality, did you mean using an advanced thermostat/control with an old heating system? As a Trane dealer, do you think there'd be a significant amount of issues using the ComfortLink II with a heating/cooling system other than one put out by Trane? I'm aware I'd have to call an authorized Trane dealer to purchase/install the unit anyway, but I was just curious. Keep me posted on this unit's functionality with your Vera unit, thanks!

Offline mundyb

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2012, 01:44:57 pm »
Actually the other way 'round.  Using a standard or "old" thermostat with the new and more advanced equipment.  Even if you can get the old thermostat to work on the new ComfortLink, or Infinity, system you loose little things.  In the case of the Trane setup, for one, they have the outdoor temperature sensor built into the outdoor unit that allows you to do things like control a "Dual Fuel" system, or control the heat strips in a heat pump based on outdoor temperature.  Things like that.  The Carrier systems actually don't function like they are supposed to, but that doesn't apply to your situation.

I'll keep you posted.  Hopefully the thing will ship today and I can put it in tomorrow and we'll see how it goes.  At worst I think early next week I'll have something.

As far as issues, I'm not sure.  I know that Honeywell makes a lot of thermostats for Trane, and that they (Honeywell) have a 3 wire thermostat.  And although I have never tried it, I think it may be based off the same technology.  That was another direction I was thinking about going.  If I'm wrong I haven't lost anything as that system is not on my Vera now, so it really won't bother me.

Offline bkirkwood

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2012, 06:57:52 am »
I am using the Honeywell Z-wave thermostat with my Vera3 and it works well (basic temp control stuff).  I would also be interested to know if the ComfortLink II will integrate with the Vera 3.  I guess it just really needs to do the same thing for me and control the house temp, but the other features and the "coolness" factor of it is why I like it.  I read a post from 8/2011 that said: "As for being able to control all parts of your system via your phone/laptop... this is not available yet, only the Comfortlink (NOT THE ComfortLink II) is a Z-wave compatible with Schlage Link system, the upgrade (which will be downloaded over the internet capability of the XL950) will allow the XL950 to be a part of this system but no dates are announced yet. The Comfortlink Z-Wave thermostat is not a communicating stat, it is only a 24Volt stat."  So not sure if it's upgraded yet, but can't find much on Trane's site that indicates it works.


Vera 3, Altsteon, Insteon KeypadLinc Relay, Honeywell Z-Wave Thermostat, Insteon FanLinc,  Schlage Z-Wave Deadbolt, GE Z-Wave Relay Switch

Offline agoodman82

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2012, 10:57:49 am »
bkirkwood, I read that just this past fall (I forget the link, but I'll post it if I can find it) the ComfortLink II's firmwear was upgraded this past fall to be able to communicate with the Schlage Link system (now known as Nexia). The ComfortLink II can now be controlled from outside the home via a subscription to Nexia, and from what I understand is free to control within the home on your personal network without a subscription cost.

After speaking to an authorized Trane dealer this morning, there were other costs that had to be factored into an install that I wasn't aware of besides the thermostat itself which alone can run from $700 - $900. Unless you have a newer central heating and AC unit with control modules/relays that will allow the ComfortLink II to communicate with them (for energy efficiency and to take advantage of there thermostats advanced control options) you would need to have these relays installed on your existing units. The outdoor weather sensor module would also need to be installed. I was quoted a total install price of $1,700... but they have not actually installed the unit before because everyone backs out when they hear the price, and for good reason.

mundyb, as a Trane dealer, does this price sound about right with what they told me about the relay installs? Any luck with pairing your ComfortLink II with your Vera (if you received the unit already)? I'm going to shop around and see if I can get some more estimates from other Trane dealers. For me, despite a high price, I would still actually consider this unit if it can be paired with Vera vs paying the monthly Nexia subscription fee. I just wish because no one is buying this unit because of the high price they would come down a little. It's almost a rich man's toy at that price, of which I am unfortunately not lol.

Offline Dominic

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2012, 11:06:41 am »
I have one of these thermostats.  It does not have a ZWave chip installed, it is strictly a web enabled thermostat.  I haven't been able to figure out how to control it with Vera.  I don't know if it will be possible.  It seems to be linked to the Schalage system only.  The thermostat is running a small Linux OS, and you can open an SSH connection, but without the root password, you can't login. 

The ComfortLink II can now be controlled from outside the home via a subscription to Nexia, and from what I understand is free to control within the home on your personal network without a subscription cost.

How does one control this from your internal wireless network?  Do you still need the Schlage Link hardware?  If now, maybe we can work backwards on the web protocols.

Dom

Offline agoodman82

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2012, 12:10:39 pm »
How do you like the unit, ddiascro? Since you have Vera and aren't as of now able to control the CL2 remotely outside your home, do you find that a big disappointment in functionality with the thermostat, or does it make up for it in other ways?

I'm having an estimate tomorrow by a local Trane dealer for the unit (I would need relay modules for my non-Trane heating/cooling equipment) and I will ask if the Nexia Bridge unit is required for wireless access within your home network. All I've seen from Trane and Nexia webpages are that the Nexia Bridge is required for remote access along with a wireless network. Talking to the dealer I spoke with quick it is free to use the CL2 wirelessly within your home and if you would be required to purchase the Nexia Bridge to accomplish that, that would seem like a rather ridiculous function point if you didn't plan on using the Nexia Home Intelligence system... but if the unit is just utilized on your own home network in that way, it makes me wonder why no one has been able to "crack the code" and separate the remote functionality of the CL2 from the Nexia-only monopoly.

I'll see what the dealer says tomorrow.

Offline Dominic

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2012, 12:20:58 pm »
I do like the thermostat.  Being able to access it from outside would be nice, but I can live without it.  Didn't have it before so I'm not missing anything I didn't have. 

Compared to the original Comfortlink II that was installed, it is nice.  I do like being able to pull up the weather right away, and the GUI makes scheduling easier.  Since I already had a communicating system installed, I just purchased the thermostat off ebay and installed it myself.  Since you don't have a communicating system, I wouldn't recommend doing that yourself.

Since you don't have a communicating system, any reason why you're looking at the XL950?  I think there are some web enabled thermostats that people have written plugins for Vera.

Let me know what they say about accessing the thermostat from internal.  I'm not going to purchase their gateway or pay a monthly fee for access.  There are other web enabled thermostats that have free wifi access, both internal and external.

For those of use with communicating systems, we're pretty much limited with thermostat options.

Dom

Offline agoodman82

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2012, 08:38:48 pm »
Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Dom.

I gotta admit, despite the price tag, when I first saw the CL2 and what it can do, I was really interested in getting it. I do have older, non-communicating heating/cooling equipment, so I know there are many other thermostats I can choose from that would certainly be easier to install as well as much cheaper. I just liked how Trane took something as everyday like a thermostat and turned it into something more... a digital photo frame, a weather station, a z-wave control panel... so it's more than just an everyday house-hold thermostat. This unit would also be my first leap into the world of z-wave and remote/home automation, as I'm planning on adding many other z-wave devices like light/fan switches, outlets, door locks, etc in the near future.

Apparently my estimate is a no-go tomorrow. The Trane dealer I was trying to use called me up and said he's going to pass on the estimate because he doesn't want to do the install. Sounds like they have only done a few and they're concerned about it not-working well with non-trane equipment and they don't want to be liable for any issues. Really upsetting actually, because they could've told me that when I first inquired. I actually don't understand Trane's logic in picking their authorized dealers. I have almost none around me here in NY, and the few that are don't try to encourage me to get the unit, they try to discourage me from getting it. Given the price tag, I doubt Trane has too many sales accrued with the CL2, so you would think they would be encouraging their authorized dealers to market the thermostat better. I'll have to call another place up tomorrow, but unfortunately the one that bailed on me was the most reputable-sounding out of the dealers available nearby.

Offline arlane05

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #10 on: April 21, 2012, 12:49:05 am »
I just took the plunge with a complete Trane inside air handler, outside condensing unit and the Comfortlink II T-stat. The combination of the communicating units makes this the best on the market in my opinion. I will communicate to this forum what I know to better help other members decide what they feel is best suited for them. The Comfortlink T-stat was installed with firmware 1.0 which did not come with any Nexia capabilities. I proceeded to enter my e mail info into the T-stat after I linked it to my Vera2 wifi, this is the first step for setup. After that you can enter your e-mail info on the t-stat screen, it then uses your wifi to communicate with the Trane servers and once registered it then sends a 5 digit pin code to your entered e mail. You then proceed to enter the pin into the spaces on the T-stat, it authenticates it and you now can get the extra feature - weather reports. Once you enter this pin it does not need to be entered again, you can then tap the check for updates where it prompts you if you would like to do it with an SD card or direct from the internet. I chose from internet, and it still prompted for an SD card to load the download onto it.

Once the download was complete, I followed on screen directions for installation, and then after it was done it rebooted and now had a button on screen for Nexia support. I tapped that button and it also prompted for a five digit pin, so I entered the same one that I originally received, but no luck. I could not figure out this system, until I received a few days later a promo e-mail from Nexia, giving me a 6 month trial. I was really not going to spend money on a Nexia bridge, plus an 8.99 a month subscription just to control the T-stat, thats what the scheduling does anyway. After reading on and looking at it closer I realized that the T-stat (Comfortlink II) can be controlled via web without the bridge. It is now obvious that the ComfortlinkII does NOT have zwave capabilities, and that the T-stat logs into the Nexia server, and you log into the Nexia server and that is how it is controlled.

After further research on this I found that American Standard has the exact same T-stat, just rebranded for them, but on their website they offer something called a Telephone Access Module. This module is designed to work with this T-stat via landline or cell phone. It is interactive, where you call in and press the keys on the phone after the prompts you want and control it that way. It also can call you or a service tech with service alerts when you program in those phone numbers. The drawback to this is running a wire from the nearest phone jack in your house to the module which then hooks this up to the T-stat (so 80's).

It is my opinion, that if this module is currently in existance, with a price of about 285 to 355 dollars it may or may not catch on, but who is to say that sometime in the near future they don't create the same type of module only zwave compatible. This module hooks to the T-stat, Vera controls the T-stat interfacing with the module and you now have zwave control. At that point you will then have a choice of 8.99 a month for Nexia service or a module that is a one time expense and no monthly service charge. It looks like for now Nexia has the exclusive upper hand on the controls of this t-stat. and will hold on as long as possible. I hope this post helps some of you and sheds some light on how the ComfortlinkII is set up to work.

Offline tweekerz

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #11 on: October 31, 2012, 12:36:37 am »
Looking to see if there is more fedback on whether Vera 3 offered the functionality needed for the CLII stat panel

Offline tweekerz

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #12 on: November 20, 2012, 01:19:26 am »
CLII installed back on 10/31/12
Confirmed with nexia support on Facebook. state communicates to Nexia over wifi.... no Z-Wave functionality. the 400B and 500B (Comfortlink) is Z-wave enabled.

Looking to see if there is more fedback on whether Vera 3 offered the functionality needed for the CLII stat panel


PS, the challenge questions on this site are ridiculous

Offline tomsharp

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Re: Trane Comfortlink II + Vera
« Reply #13 on: December 03, 2014, 09:11:56 pm »
Trane has four ComfortLink II models that connect to home automation systems. See http://www.trane.com/residential/en/products/thermostats-and-controls/connected-controls.html.

* ComfortLink II XL950 connects via Wi-Fi only.
* ComfortLink II XL850 and XL824 connect via Wi-Fi, Ethernet, or "Built-in Nexia Home Bridge"
* ComfortLink II XL624 connects via "Z-Wave connection" and "Nexia Home compatible"