For many hours a day you’re gone at work, or perhaps at school. Yet your heating or air conditioning keeps going and going, without anybody home. This needs a ton of energy and costs you money. You can dramatically scale back this cost by setting the thermostat up or down before you head to work and setting it back to your preferred temperature when you come home. But how much should you adjust it?
Here’s what the Department of Energy has to say about thermostat changes:
You can save as much as 10% a year on heating and cooling bills by just turning your thermostat down 7°-10°F for eight hours a day from its normal setting. The percentage of savings from setback is larger for buildings in more temperate climates than for those in more extreme climates.
The smaller the contrast between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, the more affordable your complete cooling bill can be. You can comfortably save energy through the winter by setting the thermostat to around 68°F while you're awake and turning it lower while you're in bed or away from home. In the summer, you can follow the same plan 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 provide humidity control if needed.
You may have been told that doing these adjustments aren’t worth it because your HVAC has to work harder to go back to your favored temperature, undoing your savings, but the energy department suggests this isn't true, particularly for a furnace: “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
Even with the benefits of setting your thermostat every time you leave for work, it’s very easy to forget in the rush of getting ready and on your way. This is one advantage of programmable and smart thermostats. You can instruct your thermostat to automatically shift to another temperature through your average work hours. And with a smart thermostat, you can change the temperature (or the programming schedule) from your smartphone or similar device. This is very helpful if you’ve neglected to adjust the setting before going on vacation.
Don't Forget the Pets
If you have a pet, give consideration to their comfort too. Cats and dogs with dense fur won’t be comfy with high temperatures. And pets with short fur might not be comfortable with cold temperatures. The same applies to tropical birds, fish and reptiles. Considering temperature tolerances deviate significantly by breed and species, look them up for your pets.
Additional Advantages of Adjusting Your Thermostat for When You’re Away
- Carbon emissions - The harder you operate your heating and cooling, the more carbon emissions you produce. Conserving energy decreases air pollution and greenhouse gasses.
- HVAC Longevity - Overworking your HVAC unit can reduce its life expectancy and cause additional maintenance to be required. It also means the air filter can clog up sooner, making your indoor air supply worse.
If you have any questions about your air conditioner features, or if you are looking for HVAC repair or maintenance, contact the specialists at Stevenson Service Experts, a big company with local heart. We’re serious about making the world a comfy 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 satisfied.
Experts — it’s in our name and core to our work. We work tirelessly to help each member of our staff develop into a skilled craftsman. We hire the best and supply education, opportunities and assistance, so our staff can learn, develop and be equipped for any challenge in front of them.
Our total business strength and people make us special. With over 4,000 team members working together, we can deliver and innovate more successfully than the rest of the industry. Our positive, neighborly attitude energizes our cooperation and helps us get the job done promptly, and right — the first time.
Our blend of company size and personal expertise means we can accomplish more with the next great idea … which could come from anywhere and anyone. We are reinvigorating the industry by harnessing each team member’s most popular ideas. That means our teams and customers can rest assured we’re moving, innovating, delivering, and in it for the long term, through the busier times and beyond.
We are Stevenson Service Experts! Giving strength, knowledge and support across every season.