How Should I Set My Thermostat for When I’m At Work?

For plenty of hours a day you’re gone at work, or perhaps at school. Yet your heating or air conditioning continues to run, despite the house being empty. This uses up a good deal of energy and wastes money. You can dramatically lower this cost by changing the thermostat up or down when you leave for work and adjusting it back to your preferred temperature when you get home. But how much should the thermostat be adjusted? 

Here’s what the Department of Energy has to say about thermostat changes: 

You can save around 10% a year on HVAC costs by just setting your thermostat down 7°-10°F for eight hours a day rather than its usual setting. The percentage of savings from setback is greater for buildings in more temperate climates than for those in more severe climates. 

The tinier the variation between the both temperatures, the more affordable your overall cooling bill will be. You can effectively save energy in the winter by lowering the thermostat to around 68°F while you’re awake and adjusting it down while you’re asleep or away from home. For summer, you can practice the same approach 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 you can manage comfortably when you are at home and want cooling and to provide humidity control if necessary. 

You could have been advised that these kinds of adjustments won’t be worth it because your comfort system has to work harder to get back to your favored temperature, reversing your savings, but the energy department suggests this isn’t true, namely 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 

Even with the benefits of changing your thermostat every time you leave for work, it’s very easy to miss 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 a different temperature during your average work hours. And with a smart thermostat, you can adjust the temperature (or the programming schedule) from anywhere. This is especially helpful if you’ve forgotten to adjust the setting before leaving for a trip. 

Remember the Pets 

If you own pets, consider their comfort too. Cats and dogs with thick fur won’t be comfy with high temperatures. And pets with less dense fur might not be pleased with cold temperatures. The same applies to tropical birds, fish and reptiles. Since temperature tolerances differ widely by breed and species, so review them for your pets. 

Additional Perks of Changing Your Thermostat for When You’re Away 

  • Carbon emissions – The harder you use your HVAC system, the more carbon emissions you produce. Preserving energy reduces air pollution and greenhouse gasses. 
  • HVAC Longevity – Overusing your heating and cooling can diminish its life expectancy and cause more maintenance to be needed. It also means the air filter can clog up more quickly, 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, get in touch with the pros at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing, a big company with local heart. We’re passionate about making the world a comfy 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 work. We work hard to help each technician or installer develop into a skilled craftsman. We employ the best and provide education, opportunities and support, so everyone can learn, improve and be equipped for any kind of challenge they’re faced with. 

Our united business strength and people distinguish us from the competition. With over 4,000 team members collaborating on making you comfortable, we can deliver and innovate better than other companies. Our can-do, neighborly attitude fuels our collaboration and helps us get the job done in a timely manner, and right — the first time. 

Our combination of company size and individual expertise means we can accomplish more with the next great idea … which may come from anywhere and anyone. We are helping transform the industry by supporting each team member’s most popular ideas. That means our teams and customers can relax knowing we’re moving, innovating, delivering, and in it for the long haul, through the busiest times and beyond. 

We are Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing! Delivering strength, knowledge and support through every season. 

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