Common problems with digital thermostats include inaccurate temperature readings, dirty mechanisms, malfunctioning screens and improper calibration. Some digital models also respond erratically when their batteries run low.
Inaccurate temperature readings are one of the most common problems with digital thermostats, and the location of the device is often to blame. Digital models sense the current temperature and activate the heating or cooling system to achieve a set temperature. If the thermostat is located next to a drafty window or in the path of direct sunlight, it may not get an accurate reading of the room temperature.
Dirt buildup inside the thermostat can coat the interior mechanisms and cause incorrect readings. Homeowners can improve performance by removing their thermostats from the wall and using soft brushes to clean the interiors.
Malfunctioning screens are a common problem for digital thermostats. An ineffective power source is usually to blame. If the thermostat has been bumped, the wiring may be disconnected. Battery-operated devices may have blank or flickering screens when the batteries run low.
If the heater or air conditioner switches off too quickly, it can indicate that the device is not properly calibrated. In many cases, calibration problems require the homeowner to replace the thermostat.