For plenty of hours a day you’re gone at work, or perhaps at school. Yet your comfort system continues to run, without anybody home. This needs a ton of energy and wastes money. You can considerably reduce this cost by adjusting the thermostat up or down when you head to work and resetting it back to your favored temperature when you come home. But how much should you adjust the temperature?
Here’s what the Department of Energy says about thermostat adjustments:
You can save as much as 10% a year on HVAC costs by just turning your thermostat down 7°-10°F for eight hours a day compared to its usual setting. The percentage of savings from setback is better for buildings in milder climates than for those in more dynamic climates.
The tinier the variation between the outdoor and indoor temperatures, the less expensive your overall cooling bill can be. You can comfortably save energy during the winter by lowering the thermostat to something like 68°F while you're awake and adjusting it down while you're asleep or away from home. In the summer, you can follow the same strategy with central air conditioning by keeping your house warmer than normal when you are away and tweaking the thermostat to a setting as high as is comfortable for you when you are at home and want cooling and to secure humidity control if required.
You may have been told that making these adjustments aren’t worth it because your HVAC has to work even harder to get back to your preferred temperature, using up your savings, but the energy department puts that notion to rest, especially for heaters: “A common misconception associated with thermostats is that a furnace works harder than normal to warm the space back to a comfortable temperature after the thermostat has been set back, resulting in little or no savings. In fact, as soon as your house drops below its normal temperature, it will lose energy to the surrounding environment more slowly.”
Programmable and Smart Thermostats
Despite the benefits of adjusting your thermostat any time you leave for work, it’s very easy to overlook in the rush of getting ready and on your way. This is one perk of programmable and smart thermostats. You can instruct your thermostat to automatically shift to a different temperature across your regular work hours. And with a smart thermostat, you can change the temperature (or the programming schedule) remotely. This is very helpful if you’ve neglected to change the setting before leaving for a trip.
Always Remember the Pets
If you own pets, think about their comfort as well. Cats and dogs with thick fur won’t be comfy with high temperatures. And pets with less fur may not be comfortable with cold temperatures. The same is true of tropical birds, fish and reptiles. Since temperature preferences differ widely by breed and species, look them up for your pets.
More Advantages of Adjusting Your Thermostat for When You’re Away
- Carbon emissions - The harder you operate your HVAC system, the more carbon emissions you generate. Conserving energy decreases air pollution and greenhouse gasses.
- HVAC Longevity - Overworking your HVAC system can cut its life span and cause more maintenance to be required. It also means the air filter may clog up more quickly, making your indoor air quality worse.
If you have any concerns about your air conditioner settings, or if you require HVAC repair or maintenance, get in touch with the professionals at Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, a big company with local heart. We’re passionate about making the world a cozy place to live. Whether we’re keeping things warm, cooling things down or making the water flow, we have a lot of pride in keeping our customers and communities comfortable and contented.
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