Frequently Asked Questions
How does it work?
The Snug.Dog Heat Guardian is a pair of wireless devices that read the temperature and talk to each other. They also talk Bluetooth to your phone. Inside each Heat Guardian are two radio transceivers (one long range, one Bluetooth) and a good-sized microcomputer.
Do I need the phone application (Heat Guardian Assistant) ?
The Assistant has two main features. It lets you update the software inside of the Heat Guardians and it lets you set the minimum and maximum temperature range for audible alerting. Neither of these are critical and your Heat Guardians will work just fine without any phone application.
How often does it check temperature?
It checks the temperature at least every 30 seconds.
What temperature range is supported ?
The Lithium-Ion battery in the Heat Guardian determines the temperature range. A Lithium battery prefers room temperature but it will work in a range of -4°F to 140°F. A very cold battery will run for a shorter time than usual.
DO NOT CHARGE the battery if it is over 110°F because this may cause physical failure.
The circuitry and the plastic case have a much larger temperature range than the battery.
A good article on battery handling is here: MIT Lithium Ion Safety Guidance.
Why would the light be solid red?
When the unit is ready to be updated the light turns bright red and stays solid red. This can happen if you click the button during power up when it says "Click now for Updates". Also, the bootloader has a special way to prepare for updates (just in case an update failed catastrophically) by triple-clicking during power-on.
If you mistakenly cause either of these to happen, the red light will turn on and stay on for 1-2 minutes. Be patient and when the light turns off you can power the unit back on.
Why is the displayed temperature always a little high?
Inside the Heat Guardian is a small computer and two radios. They warm up a little during operation and that heats the inside of the V1 Heat Guardian about 3 degrees at room temperature. As it gets hotter that effect no longer matters so when you really care about your pets the temperature is extremely accurate. At room temperature, a little less so.
Note: we believe the v2 base heats up less than 1 degree even at room temperature.
How long does it take for the two units to synchronize?
If you turn them on at the same time, they will usually synchronize within 60 seconds. If not (or if they lose signal at some time) they can take up to a few minutes to find each other. Don't worry - if there is enough signal they will find each other.
What about an emergency?
If the remote gets too cold or too hot the unit in-hand immediately plays a warble and the red light starts blinking. The warble continues until you click the button.
What kind of connection do I need?
The devices are completely self-contained. Wi-Fi, Cable, Internet, Cell Service - all not required. They do have a range limitation of about 1/2 mile. The range is very dependent on metal and concrete walls and large trees. It can be as little as about 1 block to as much as miles (in an open field).
How long will it run on a charge?
Charge the Heat Guardian by plugging in a micro-USB power cable. Ensure the orange light next to the connector comes on. It will run all weekend on a single charge if you remember to turn it off at night. Charge time is about two hours.
In our testing, one full charge of a new Heat Guardian lasted about 80 hours before the battery ran completely down.
How many years will the battery last?
The Heat Guardian uses a Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery that has an expected life of about 5 years of weekly use. The battery is user-replaceable.
Where should I put the units?
The boxes use radio waves so do not surround them with metal. The best place is in or near a window. Check the signal strength at first.
Is there a monthly cost?
The Snug Dog Heat Guardian must be purchased. There are no additional fees after purchase.
How do I turn it off?
Press and hold the button for about 7 seconds until the display turns off or says Shutting Down. When turned off, they still use a small amount of power so we recommend you charge before using for a weekend.
Can I use this outside of the United States?
You may only use these in North and South America! The Heat Guardian uses a range of frequencies that are legal only inside ITU Region 2 (North and South America, Greenland, and some pacific islands). The Heat Guardian components have FCC (US) approval.
We may offer a version for ITU Region 1 (Europe, Africa, Middle East) in the future.
How is the Heat Guardian calibrated?
The Heat Guardian has many components inside that may have small variations in value. Before shipping we
manually calibrate each Heat Guardian's radio frequency to ensure that the pair can reliably communicate in all weather conditions
manually test and calibrate the temperature sensor to ensure accuracy.
This manual calibration takes about one day. Calibration data is stored in the Heat Guardian flash memory.