Tado SRT set as "INDEPENDENT" What does it actually do ?? 🤔

GrayDav4276 ✭✭✭
Today I conducted an experiment with 1 of my 10 Tado SRT's.
The SRT in question was 'controlling' a room with 1 radiator, which had the SRT installed (this radiator/room has been operating correctly)
This SRT has been utilising my Tado Extension kit to allow boiler operation when this SRT 'calls for heat'....this is normal and operates perfectly.
I have noticed in a few other threads that some users have been told to 'set' an SRT to 'INDEPENDENT'....ie to disconnect from their 'Zone controller' which appears to be the 'Extension kit'.....as is the case with my setup (which is entirely wireless)
So to my experiment.......
I changed my SRT Zone controller to "INDEPENDENT" with the following results......The Room Tile showed an applied temperature change when made through the App.....ie it showed "Heating to" and the 'opened room' showed the 3 wavy lines for 'heating'.....also the graph of operation showed the SRT to be demanding heat.....however the boiler was not fired up......because there is 'OBVIOUSLY' no connection between the SRT and the boiler.....because the boiler is not receiving a request from the Extension kit.
So although the SRT is 'communicating' via the Bridge to the Tado servers, which allows the App to 'display' the SRT condition (temperature and heat requests).....but the SRT cannot actually achieve a 'real time' functionality.
I have asked Tado Support to explain how an "INDEPENDENT" SRT actually operates........
So can anyone else shed any light on this.....??🤔 🤷‍♂️🙏


  • I believe this function is used for district heating systems where individual apartments do not demand heat. The on/off times of the heat source are controlled by a third party. The SRT is simply managing the room temperature. Could also be used in a home where UFH has priority and you just want to divert hot water to a few radiators at certain times of the day.

  • Hi @GrilledCheese2,
    So am I right in thinking that in a regular, normal household.....making an SRT "INDEPENDENT" simply turns an (expensive) Tado 'SMART' TRV into an ordinary "DUMB" (much cheaper) TRV.
  • When you make it independent it reacts like a normal TRV, but you have the "smart" schedule time when you want to heat the room.
    But it only works if the room with the mastercontroller needs heat, and the boiler is active.
  • Hi @KaleBikkel,

    So what you're saying it's a Dumb TRV (with benefits)......or to put it more accurately.....it's a time programmable Dumb TRV .

    That's interesting.......I'll check this out later today.......that might be handy 🤔

    Thanks for your interpretation of the "INDEPENDENT" Tado SRT 👍✔️

  • Hi @KaleBikkel.
    Hi @GrilledCheese2,

    I have conducted my experiment and I have found out that an " INDEPENDENT" SRT is definitely a ' Dumb TRV with benefits '

    The ' benefits ' part is the fact that you can still programme the SRT through the normal ' scheduling ' available in the App.

    In other words a standard 'dumb' TRV will heat the radiator whenever the boiler is supplying heat to the Central Heating system.....this means that a 'dumb' TRV is operation almost all the time.

    An " INDEPENDENT" Tado SRT will only operate when the boiler is operational & the "INDEPENDENT" SRT is 'scheduled ON' the "INDEPENDENT" SRT will also only heat to the temperature that has been set in the schedule.

    I currently have 2 SRT's switched to "INDEPENDENT"..... and I may revise my current setup again....if I can figure out what is more effective/efficient for my household.

    I know it's a bit sad.....but I have found this to be 'enlightening' 😉🤔😎
  • ## UPDATE ##
    Experiment continuing now with 3 SRT's set to "INDEPENDENT"
  • GrayDav4276
    GrayDav4276 ✭✭✭
    edited February 2022
    SINCE Jan 2021 I have tweaked the use of my INDEPENDENT SRT's between various rooms.
    I currently have 6 tado°rooms connected to my Zone Controller.....my Ext Kit
    And now I have my other 4 tado° rooms set as INDEPENDENT.......I now believe that this is my optimum tado° setup and it all seems to be working really well.

    How many other tado° users are currently using any SRT's as INDEPENDENT.....and what are your experiences in doing this.
  • eezytiger
    eezytiger ✭✭✭
    edited February 2022


    I've had Tado SRTs on eight of nine radiators since October last year. I have been paying close attention to the operation of the system including the firing cycles of the boiler and boiler return temperatures.

    I'm a bit on the fence about benefits of going (partially) independent or fully smart, but at the moment most of my rads are independent. The reason for this is that at minimum output my boiler provides 9kW (24kWh at max). When Tado has only one or two rads wanting heat there is nowhere for all that heat from the boiler to go, so it cycles excessively.

    By having only a few carefully considered radiators able to request heat it means that some less important rooms (spare, closed off bedrooms and closed off dining room) are left wanting heat that isn't there. Once a zone controller radiator needs heat and fires the boiler there could be three or four or five or nine rads in total needing heat. This makes it far easier to disperse that 9kW from the boiler and keep the return temperature lower for longer.

    The only radiators able to request heat in my current setup are the hall smart fitted thermostat (passthrough rad), the kitchen (cools quickly) and master bedroom. Bathroom and lounge are set wide open at 25C during the day, so they warm to whatever they can when the controller rads fire the boiler. This typically keeps those rooms in a 20-22C range, which is fine. Downstairs is all closed off (frost protection) overnight and bathroom dropped to 18C. Unused rooms are set to 16C (used to be off) so that the valves get exercised occasionally and the rads continue to get flushed and the fluids exchanged.

    I haven't paid attention to seasonal temperature changes each year, but in terms of gas utilisation we are using far less this year than last. We did have our ancient double glazing replaced with triple glazing and acoustic double glazing last summer, so that might influence the results. Even so, our comfort levels are higher than ever and heating costs well in check.

  • eezytiger
    eezytiger ✭✭✭
    edited February 2022


    Just to add, here is the current heating demand, if that's the right way to describe it. The boiler is off right now and has been for some time. Only the hall, kitchen and master bedroom can fire the boiler. Once it does fire, courtesy of hall or kitchen right now, several rooms will get heated, the boiler will be able to do meaningful work, and the return temperature should be kept low for an extended period.

    Here is a return temperature distribution profile so far today, covering just over 10 hours.

    The x axis scale is temperature bandings, while the y axis is total minutes in each band. The return temperature so far has been almost entirely below 50C. Happy days.

    It would be really stupid if Bed 3 was able to fire the boiler on its own, just to heat one titchy radiator in a spare bedroom, but allowing it to vampire off the rest of the system when heat is available is just perfect.

  • @eezytiger Those are nice Room heating demand % overviews, too bad you have to pay for it, though you can get the data through the api for free…

    @GrayDav4276 I have never considered to make my rooms independent. The whole idea for my to use tado is to be able to fire the boiler from other rooms than the living room, so e.g. a child’s bedroom or the study can be heated as the only room in the house. I have no trouble with too high return temperatures and I have a ‘proper’ bypass (i.e. a pressure valve, not a radiator).

    Some people say you loose heat when only heating the pipes in some circumstances, but I disagree as the heat stays within the thermic shell of the house, and mine is well isolated.

  • WebbM
    edited October 2022
    Hi all, resurrecting as I found this topic pretty interesting.

    @eezytiger How are your reports with Independent SRT’s? I’m finding that my app is recording demand for each SRT when it “wants” heat rather than when it receives heat.

    An example… my thermostat in the hall is the only device that can fire the boiler. if today it does not fire the boiler at all, the app appears to be recording demand in the cooler rooms as if the heat was received?

    Hopefully this makes sense, I’d be interest to hear peoples thoughts/experiences.
  • gary333
    gary333 ✭✭✭
    edited October 2022
    Do you mean the graph shows the TRV calling for heat most of the time? Yes, that’s what mine do as the TRV operates as if it is connected to the boiler, it’s just the message to fire boiler is not sent. As it’s getting no heat, the graph shows it requesting until the main room turns the boiler on.

    I’ve come to the conclusion that having significant differences between individual rooms isn’t really working as my office rad is a 1.2kw radiator, but at 50oC the minimum output of my boiler is 7kw. Thus the boiler is wasting gas coming on, return getting too hot and shutting off. Apart from curtailing rooms that get far hotter than the rest of the house I’ve come to the conclusion I don’t get really any value from the TRVs. Even curtailing could be done by throttling the valves.

    Heat Geeks have just done a video about why zoning is not advisable for most houses (with heat pump, but also relevant but not to the same extent for gas). I’m coming to the same conclusion that heating the whole house at a low flow temp, isn’t really costing much more than just running a couple of rooms using Tado TRVs
  • @WebbM
    My experience is the same..Only my hall thermostat, wired to the boiler, and the living room can cause the boiler to fire. The remaining seven rooms are independent. Heating went back on on 28th September. Already I have seen figures like 10 heating hours from Tado when the boiler was only lit for a single 20 minute burn at 07:00.

    FWIW I currently have flow temperature set to 50C and all rooms set to 18C during the day, off overnight. If we feel it a bit nippy then we just nudge up the lounge thermostat a degree or two till the end of the day (:22:00) and that keeps the independent rooms happy as well.

    Sadly, while this is highly boiler efficient and economical, without sacrificing comfort, it makes some of the Tado numbers rather pointless.
  • eezytiger
    eezytiger ✭✭✭
    edited October 2022

    To add some data to my comments above, here are examples from Friday 30th September.

    Firstly, here is Tado's reported heating hours total.

    Bearing in mind that I did not turn heating on until 09:00 and the schedule goes off at 22:00, so 11 hours "off", it seems the house was being "heated" almost the entire day. Sounds expensive.

    So let's look at my actual gas consumption in 30 minute chunks....

    Oh, so the boiler was lit for, at most, 90 minutes for heating - 3 x 30 minute slots. Not quite twelve hours, is it. Also, my total gas consumption was 11.6 kWh on Friday. Knock off a bit for showers, cooking, hot water and call it 9 kWh for heating. Well, spookily, my boiler outputs a minimum of 9 kW for heating, max 24, so actually the boiler was only lit for heating for one hour tops. Definitely not twelve.

    So let's look at how things actual went down. Here is the heating graph for the lounge, which in practice is the only room in charge of heating requests.

    You will see a heat demand and rising temperatures on only three occasions, corresponding with the gas consumption graph earlier. So that's not twelve heating hours either.

    Finally, let's look at the most "needy" room in the house - the back bedroom...

    OK, so it WANTED heating near enough all day - twelve hours - but it only received heating when the boiler was lit, so more like one hour, as we've seen above.

    Welcome to Tado maths. I struggle to see the value in these heating activity numbers. Personally I'm happy with my gas consumption graph. That's the facts.

    Oh, and I do think there is some value to the individual room graphs for deeper analysis of individual room behaviour (like how quickly it heats and cools - is the insulation sufficient, is the radiator receiving sufficient hot water from a properly balanced system) but the heating activity breakdown is just not helpful IMHO.

  • That’s interesting, so very much an issue with the Tado app development if I want to use “independent” TRV’s then. Until that’s sorted I’d just need to accept the poor data. That’s a shame.

    @gary333 do you have a link to that video sounds interesting… I’ve got an old on/off style boiler with hot water tank so I don’t think I could get my flow under 65° and still have safe hot water. I like the idea if low flow all day but probably not the most efficient for my boiler.

    @eezytiger currently I’m thinking of going with your approach, maybe a temperature sensor in each lounge downstairs (rather than hall) that call for heat then just allow the other rooms to use the excess with a limit temp so the rooms don’t get too hot.
  • WebbM
    edited October 2022
    @eezytiger That second post summed up exactly my situation. Shame… do you know if there is something to upvote on the subject or are Tado working in a solution?

    Also where is your gas consumption graph from? Is that a boiler/smart meter report?
  • eezytiger
    eezytiger ✭✭✭
    edited October 2022

    @WebbM No idea about up-voting a solution. The current system probably suits many people as it stands - at least those who have not gone independent. Also, for me, even if they fixed it for independent users I'm not sure I'd find value in the numbers there either. My 30 minute smart meter readings and individual room graphs are more informative and more accurate.

    Regarding data source, my supplier (OVO) makes available my 30 minute consumption figures on a daily basis, one day in arrears. Unfortunately they seem to have got stuck with the updates in the past couple of days so they don't yet show my Friday data. So I've sourced the data above from Bright - a third party who, along with Loop, can pull my smart meter data from the DCC. They are both a little more up to date than OVO just now.

  • tado° have known about the discrepancies between "real time heat demand" and what tado° supplies as data.
    They have done nothing to rectify the issue.....and I don't expect to see any attempt to change the data that they deliver for the current range of hardware.
    I'll be impressed if tado° can sort this out for the next generation of tado° products......but I'm afraid to say that I won't be holding my breath.
  • @eezytiger Thats interesting thanks for sharing, I’ve just registered with bright and it gives much more info (actually probably the same but better presented) than I can get out of EDF’s insights.

    @GrayDav4276 Thats disappointing, I’m generally impressed with Tado as a whole but there definitely seems to be missed opportunities on the analytics side of things.
  • gary333
    gary333 ✭✭✭
    @WebbM - here you go: https://youtu.be/zpTVIeUh04E

    Looks like it’s not a new video so must have just popped up in my feed.
  • GrayDav4276
    GrayDav4276 ✭✭✭
    edited December 2022

    ## UPDATE ##

    Today I checked out my "EnergyIQ" & "Care & Protect" features.......and it looks like someone at tado° has "tweaked" the algorithms used to calculate their predictions and estimates.....because my current figures are much closer to my "actual" readings......at last !!

    These changes have been retro fitted to also correct Novembers figures.

    I have also noticed that yesterday (coldest day of the year so far) my daily "hours heating" was recorded significantly lower than in November and December.........I wonder if tado° is now actually ignoring (as it should do) the "heat demand" of INDEPENDENT thermostats, and is now only recording (as it should do) the "heat demand" generated by the NON-INDEPENDENT thermostats.

    As a confirmed cynic (especially with regards to tado° features) I shall monitor these welcome changes to my EnergyIQ and Care & Protect features..........so for now.........WELL DONE tado° 👍

  • Gazab
    edited January 13
    How do you get the Heating Activity table, seen above, by paying?
    Is it worth paying £24 fee do you get extra information to cut your bill by £24?
  • Hi @Gazab
    No we're not the same person..... I'm sure that I'm the grumpy old git.
    Secondly, regarding the expense of the subscription.... I don't think that tado would like me to advise you about this.....however I can tell you that I have just cancelled my subscription because I don't feel that I got anything worthwhile from it in it's current mode of operation.
  • eezytiger
    eezytiger ✭✭✭
    edited January 13
    Hi @Gazab
    No we're not the same person, but I think we share many views in common about Tado.

    When I installed Tado in October 2021 I signed up for a year of Support Assist. I found most of the numbers to be highly inaccurate and I did not need any of the automated features. I did not renew and I do not feel that I'm missing anything.

    The best data comes straight from my gas supplier, with half hourly smart meter readings showing the data I need, without algorithms and guesswork.

    Of nine radiators and eight SRTs, all but one are independent and set permanently to 21C. Only the master bedroom commands the boiler on/ off and that is set to 19C 24x7. That means that most of my rads are requesting heat all day and all night, but they only receive it when the bedroom turns the boiler on. Therefore the Tado "heating" stats are complete nonsense, and consumption data is not as good as actual facts from my supplier.

    I don't need open window detection, which is flaky at best, or automated geofencing, since the house is rarely unoccupied for long.
  • i've used the approach of having the tado trv's into independent mode and only have my living room tado trv's set with a zone controller. prefer it as the boiler is not being asked to fire up as often as before.

  • GrayDav4276
    GrayDav4276 ✭✭✭
    edited January 13
    Isn't it a shame that to get the "best" from our tado systems we actually have to operate it in a very "non Tado" manner.
    Is this a reflection on us....(because tado calls us "power users") ..... or is it more of a reflection on the tado system itself. ??🤔
  • eezytiger
    eezytiger ✭✭✭
    edited January 13

    I think it is not about us at all.

    It is mostly about overpowered boilers, unable to modulate down far enough, and the hoops we have to jump through on order to maximise system performance (efficiency).

    But it is also about a different way of thinking - heat the house, not individual rooms. That's the best way to disperse the heat effectively and to keep flow and return temps low.

    I think Tado is better suited to the old ways of doing things, with micro-zoning each room, but that is not the best way to operate, especially with an overpowered boiler. You want to get the heat out of the system and and into the home, not bottled up and dribbled out, one room at a time. The best way to do that is to have all the radiators working together in a balanced system of suitably sized radiators.

  • @eezytiger
    Well put...... better than I tried to say....but I think that you are absolutely correct in your description of the "main issue"
  • wateroakley
    wateroakley ✭✭✭
    edited January 13
    @eezytiger @GrayDav4276 interesting views. We use Tado TRVs and stats to call for heat in three ways: main bedroom early am and late evening; the north wing am and day; south wing evening. The rest are mostly off or independent. We use geofencing quite a lot. Compared to the original timer, room stat and TRVs, the rooms are at better temperatures for our use. We are also saving nearly 30% on the gas use compared to previously heating the whole house, at the same monthly CET, and always forgetting to adjust the room stat when we go out for the day.
  • GrayDav4276
    GrayDav4276 ✭✭✭
    edited January 13


    Your comment actually highlights a fundamental point of our very different CH methodologies.......and that is the simple fact that all our systems are actually unique to our own specific requirements. What works for some people will not be seen as ideal for others. So many people expect their "automated Smart CH system" to do everything that they expect/want.....straight out of the box......but life isn't that simple.

    I have had my tado devices for over two years and have tried many many versions of setups.........I was always having to continually tweak my settings.....virtually on a daily basis......which I don't regard as an effective "smart system"

    I have now (today) made my final (hopefully) setup adjustment......this is now very similar to @eezytiger's set up (not exactly the same)........but that's because our systems are UNIQUE.