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White-Rodgers P200 review: A basic thermostat with a few bells and whistles

It may not be Wi-Fi-enabled, but the White-Rodgers P200 thermostat would make a smart addition to your home.

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Megan Wollerton
meganwollertonportraits0719-23a
Megan Wollerton Senior Writer/Editor

Megan Wollerton covers renewable energy, climate change and other environmental topics for CNET. Before starting at CNET in 2013, she wrote for NBC Universal's DVICE (now SYFY). Megan has a master's degree from the University of Louisville and a bachelor's degree from Connecticut College, both in international relations. She is a board member of the Louisville chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. When Megan isn't writing, she's planning far-flung adventures.

Expertise Science, Home Credentials Society of Professional Journalists 2022 Louisville Metro Journalism Award for Feature Writing, Society of Professional Journalists 2022 Ohio Journalism Award for Science Writing
2 min read

You can find the $50 White-Rodgers P200 programmable thermostat for much less at most major retailers. In particular, it's available for $24.79 at Home Depot and for $23.77 on Amazon. While it certainly isn't a fancy thermostat, it still has a lot to offer and I can comfortably recommend it.

emerson-17f8-151-thermostat-product-photos-1.jpg
7.3

White-Rodgers P200

The Good

White-Rodgers' P200 programmable thermostat lets you program Saturday and Sunday separately; it also comes with a backlight and a simple, discreet design.

The Bad

I wish the display didn't flash between the current time and the current ambient temperature.

The Bottom Line

The White-Rodgers P200 is a solid option for anyone in search of an affordable thermostat with bonus weekend programming options.

5 programmable thermostats you can find for $30 or less

See all photos

What it lacks in modern design appeal, it makes up for with a bonus feature: 5-1-1 programming.

The other four thermostats I reviewed in this price range offer 5-2 programming -- that means you set one heating and cooling schedule for Monday through Friday and a second schedule for the weekend. With a 5-1-1 thermostat, Monday through Friday has the same single shared program as before, but you can program Saturday and Sunday separately to give you more customization options.

That way, if your weekend routine involves hitting the gym or going to work on Saturday morning and sleeping in a bit more on Sunday, you can program the P200 accordingly.

This White-Rodgers thermostat was also relatively easy to program and comes with a green backlight that makes it more visible. As with the Emerson 1F78-151, the P200's display screen alternates between the current time and the current ambient temperature. I find this back-and-forth display of information a little annoying, but it definitely isn't a deal breaker.

Overall, while I don't like its design as much as the Lux TX500U, White-Rodgers' P200 is worth consideration -- especially if you would prefer to program Saturday and Sunday separately.

Note: This thermostat is compatible with basic heating and cooling systems; click here for more details. If you have questions about installation, consult a professional.

Comparing thermostats

Honeywell RTHL2310BHunter 44157Emerson 1F78-151White-Rodgers P200Lux TX500U
Price MSRP: $25 Lowe's: $24.98MSRP: $25 Amazon: $20.59MSRP: $43 Amazon: $26MSRP: $50 Amazon: $23.77MSRP: $30 Amazon/Home Depot: $30
Color finish WhiteWhiteWhiteWhiteWhite
Batteries Yes, two AAAYes, two AAYes, two AAAYes, two AAYes, two AA
Backlight Yes, greenYes, blueNoYes, greenYes, blue
Dimensions (WxHxD) 4.75 x 3.4 x 1 inches8 x 6 x 1.6 inches6.2 x 4.2 x 1.8 inches6.5 x 4.5 x 1.5 inches5.4 x 3.4 x 1.1 inches
Display DigitalDigitalDigitalDigitalDigital
Programmable Yes, 5-2Yes, 5-2Yes, 5-2Yes, 5-1-1Yes, 5-2
emerson-17f8-151-thermostat-product-photos-1.jpg
7.3

White-Rodgers P200

Score Breakdown

Performance 7Usability 7Features 8.5Design 7
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