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

For many hours a day you’re off at work, or maybe at school. Yet your HVAC system keeps going and going, with nobody home. This uses a lot of energy and costs you money. You can dramatically scale back this cost by changing the thermostat up or down before you go to work and setting it back to your favored 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 adjustments: 

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

The lower the variation between the both temperatures, the less expensive your total cooling bill should be. You can comfortably save energy in the winter by adjusting the thermostat to something like 68°F while you’re awake and setting it lower while you’re in bed or away from home. In the summer, you can use the same plan with central air conditioning by keeping your house warmer than normal when you are at work and setting the thermostat to a setting as warm as is comfortable for you when you’re home and want cooling and to ensure humidity control if required. 

You may have been informed that doing these adjustments won’t be worth the effort because your heating and cooling has to work harder to get back to your favored temperature, undoing your savings, but the energy department suggests this isn’t true, 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.” 

Programmable and Smart Thermostats 

Even with the benefits of changing your thermostat each time you go to work, it’s very easy to overlook 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 move to another temperature during your regular work hours. And with a smart thermostat, you can increase or decrease the temperature (or the programming schedule) from anywhere. This is particularly helpful if you’ve forgotten to fix the setting before going on vacation. 

Don’t Forget the Pets 

If you have pets at home, consider their comfort too. Cats and dogs with heavy fur won’t be comfy with high temperatures. And pets with short fur may not be pleased with cold temperatures. The same is true of tropical birds, fish and reptiles. Because temperature preferences differ widely by breed and species, so review them for your pets. 

More Benefits of Setting Your Thermostat for When You’re Away 

  • Carbon emissions – The more you use your heating and cooling, the more carbon emissions you produce. Conserving energy minimizes air pollution and greenhouse gasses. 
  • HVAC Longevity – Overusing your HVAC unit can cut its longevity and cause additional maintenance to be required. It also means the air filter may clog up faster, making your indoor air quality worse. 

If you have any questions about your air conditioner options, or if you are looking for HVAC repair or maintenance, contact 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 flow, we take great pride in keeping our customers and communities comfortable and content. 

Experts — it’s in the name and vital to our service. We work hard to help each technician or installer learn to be a skilled professional. We work with the best and offer training, opportunities and support, so everyone can learn, improve and be equipped for any challenge they’re faced with. 

Our total business strength and people distinguish us from the competition. With more than 4,000 team members collaborating on making you comfortable, we can deliver and innovate better than the competition. Our positive, family-friendly attitude energizes our teamwork and helps us get the job done in a timely manner, and right — the first time. 

Our blend of company size and unique expertise means we can offer more with the next great idea … which could come from anywhere and anyone. We are reinventing the industry by supporting each team member’s greatest ideas. That means our teams and customers can rest assured we’re moving, innovating, delivering, and in it for the long run, through the busy times and beyond. 

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

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