For many hours a day you’re off at work, or perhaps at school. Yet your heating or air conditioning continues to run, despite the house being empty. This uses a lot of energy and wastes money. You can significantly reduce this cost by adjusting the thermostat up or down as you leave for work and setting it back to your favored temperature when you return home. But how much should you adjust the temperature?
Here’s what the Department of Energy has to say about thermostat settings:
You can save as much as 10% a year on HVAC costs by simply turning your thermostat down 7°-10°F for eight hours a day from its typical setting. The percentage of savings from setback is greater for buildings in milder climates than for those in more severe climates.
The smaller the difference between the outdoor and indoor temperatures, the more affordable your total cooling bill should be. You can easily save energy in the winter by setting the thermostat to about 68°F while you’re awake and turning it lower while you’re asleep or away from home. In the summer, you can practice the same strategy with central air conditioning by keeping your house warmer than normal when you are at work and setting the thermostat to a setting as high as you’re comfortable with when you are at home and want cooling and to secure humidity control if needed.
You may have been told that doing these adjustments aren’t worth the effort because your HVAC has to work extra hard to get back to your desired temperature, undoing your savings, but the energy department puts that notion to rest, especially for heating: “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.”
Despite the benefits of adjusting your thermostat every time you go to work, it’s not hard to forget in the rush of getting ready and on your way. This is one benefit of programmable and smart thermostats. You can set your thermostat to automatically move to another temperature during your regular work hours. And with a smart thermostat, you can change the temperature (or the programming schedule) from anywhere. This is particularly helpful if you’ve forgotten to change the setting before going on a long trip.
If you have pets at home, consider their comfort too. Cats and dogs with heavy fur won’t be comfortable with high temperatures. And pets with short fur won’t always be happy with cold temperatures. The same goes for tropical birds, fish and reptiles. Since temperature tolerances vary widely by breed and species, look them up for your pets.
If you have any questions about your air conditioner settings, or if you need HVAC repair or maintenance, call the professionals at Parker Pearce Service Experts, a big company with homegrown heart. We’re passionate about making the world a cozy place to live. Whether we’re warming, cooling or making the water run, we take great pride in keeping our customers and communities comfortable and satisfied.
Experts — it’s in our name and vital to our business. We work hard to help each member of our staff become a skilled craftsman. We employ the best and provide training, opportunities and reinforcement, so our staff can learn, improve and be prepared for any challenge they’re faced with.
Our combined business strength and people make us special. With over 4,000 team members on board, we can deliver and innovate better than the rest of the industry. Our can-do, family attitude fuels our collaboration and helps us get the job done on time, and right — the first time.
Our blend of company size and individual expertise means we can offer more with the next great idea … which can come from anywhere and anyone. We are reinventing the industry by supporting each team member’s best ideas. That means our teams and customers can rest easy knowing we’re moving, innovating, delivering, and in it for the long haul, through the busier times and beyond.
We are Parker Pearce Service Experts! Delivering strength, knowledge and support over every season.
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