Experts suggest setting the thermostat for comfort and energy savings. When the weather gets hot, it’s tempting to crank down the temperature in the home to feel the cool air indoors. When it’s freezing outside, turning up the temperature is needed to keep warm. But, what temperature is best for the summer or the winter? And is it possible to be comfortable and save money?
It’s possible to set the thermostat to just about any desired temperature, but if it’s too low or too high, it may cost a lot more to heat and cool the home. Experts have done studies to determine the recommended settings for the winter and summer months. When the temperature is at the right spot, it’s easy to balance saving money with being comfortable indoors.
Setting for the Winter Months
During the winter months, energy experts suggest setting the thermostat to 68 degrees Fahrenheit. This is an ideal temperature while at home and can help keep the house warmer than it is outside without using too much energy to heat the home. Though this might not be comfortable for everyone, it’s a good starting point to determine what the setting should be when it gets cold outside.
Setting for the Summer Months
During the summer months, cooling the home is crucial to prevent heat-related ailments. Making it too cold, though, will cause a more considerable increase in energy bills. Experts recommend setting the thermostat to 78 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer months to keep the home cool without using too much energy. Around 78 degrees is perfect for most people to feel comfortable when they come in from outside or while they’re busy inside the house.
Best Temperature While Sleeping
The best temperature while sleeping will vary a little more from person to person. While sleeping, the body regulates its temperature a little differently so the home can be cooler than during the day. An ideal temperature for most people while sleeping is between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit. Of course, it’s important to remember the type and amount of blankets on the bed, whether there is a fan on, and other factors can impact this, so finding the precise nighttime temperature can take some trial and error.
Changing the Temperature When Away
If there is no one home, does the house need to be heated or cooled? It’s essential to heat the house enough that the water lines do not freeze, but the house will likely be okay if it gets a bit hot inside during the day. Experts suggest setting the thermostat temperature by as much as 8 degrees Fahrenheit can significantly reduce energy bills without impacting the comfort of anyone at home since this happens during the day when everyone is at school or work.
Having a smart thermostat makes this easier to do. Instead of adjusting the thermostat at home and waiting for the house to cool down or heat up, a smart thermostat allows homeowners to make adjustments on the go. Adjusting the temperature before leaving work for the day means the home will be comfortable again before anyone gets home.
Setting the Temperature When Pets are Home
When pets are home, they require the right temperature to keep them comfortable during the day. It’s not a good idea to turn off the thermostat during the day if there are pets at home, as they may become too cold or too hot. Instead, there are different recommended temperatures based on the type of pet. Experts recommend considering the pet type and comfort level when setting the temperature when no one else is at home.
More Ways to Save on Energy Costs
Setting the thermostat properly and adjusting it when no one is home can help homeowners see significant savings on their energy bills. However, there are other changes that homeowners can make that will have an impact, too. Those who want to see the biggest savings throughout the year will want to try the following.
Have the Unit Repaired
It’s recommended to repair your AC unit as soon as needed and avoid putting it off. Experts also recommend having yearly maintenance done to spot potential problems early and ensuring they’re fixed immediately. Doing this helps keep the HVAC system in much better shape, which means it will be more energy efficient. A unit that’s more energy efficient is going to help homeowners save money.
Change the Filter Often
As the filter gets dirty, the air has a harder time moving through it. When the air can’t flow freely, the system has to work harder to operate and keep the home at the desired temperature. Filters should be changed monthly, especially if pets are in the house. By changing the filter more frequently, it’s easier to trap dirt and debris that could get into the system yet still allow the system to work correctly.
Move the Thermostat
Is the thermostat in a good space? If it’s incorrectly placed, the thermostat isn’t going to be able to regulate the temperature as effectively, which could mean wasted energy. Ideally, it should be placed on an interior wall near the center of the home. Be sure to avoid direct sunlight, being too close to vents, or by doors and windows. Also, avoid placing it in the kitchen or hallways.
Install a Smart Thermostat
Smart thermostats make it easy to monitor the temperature remotely, and homeowners can adjust the settings while away from home. They also have various other energy-saving features, which can help homeowners save a significant amount of money in the long run.
Are you worried about the high cost of heating or cooling the home? If so, make sure you’re setting the thermostat to the right temperature. The temperatures mentioned here are perfect as a starting point and can be adjusted to meet your comfort levels. By finding the right temperature setting, taking advantage of money-saving tips, and keeping the system in good shape, you should be able to save more money and keep your home comfortable throughout the year.
Blake Brumfield is the owner of AC TEX, LLC Air Conditioning and Heating. He is a graduate of Lindsey-Cooper Refrigeration School and has over 6 years of working experience out in the field. Blake holds a Universal EPA License, Certified Technician License, and a HVAC Contractor License. In addition to his love of the outdoors, Blake spends most of his free time continuing to study and learn about today’s modern HVAC systems.