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In this video, This Old House plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey helps save energy and stay cozy by linking a thermostat to the outside temperatures.


1. Drill a ⅜-inch-diameter hole through the exterior house wall and into the attic.

2. From inside the basement, feed the electrical cable through the hole to the outside.

3. Strip the insulation from the ends of the wire and secure them to the screw terminals on the outdoor temperature sensor.

4. Screw the outdoor sensor to the exterior house wall.

5. Feed the cable from the outdoor sensor across the basement ceiling and to the boiler.

6. Fasten the cable to the overhead joists with insulated cable staples. Secure the cable to the conduit at the boiler with plastic cable ties.

7. Use a cable tie to strap a temperature sensor to the hot-water pipe leading out of the boiler.

8. Wrap the hot-water pipe and temperature sensor with foam-rubber pipe insulation.

9. Mount the weather responsive control to the boiler with ½-inch sheet metal screws.

10. Connect the cable coming from the outdoor temperature sensor to the weather responsive control mounted to the boiler.

11. Snap the cover onto the weather responsive control and check the operation of the new system.