How To Set A Thermostat To Economize On Energy Usage?

A thermostat is often equated as the brain of an air conditioner. It is at the thermostat, that you set the temperature that you require from the air conditioner. Running a HVAC accounts for a huge energy cost on a monthly basis. Although you cannot eliminate the cost as you will need the unit for home-comfort, you can control the cost to a certain extent by setting the thermostat appropriately. Let’s see how.

• The first thing is to know what temperature will provide you comfort as well as be cost effective in terms of energy usage. It will vary a bit from person to person but there is an average standard too. In summers you can set your thermostat at 78 degrees Fahrenheit when you are at home. If you are going to be outside the house most of the time, raise it higher. You may set it so that the AC cycles on only when temperature crosses 88 degrees. It has been found that for each degree you set the thermostat over 78 degrees you save about six to eight percent off your home energy bill.

• In winters set the thermostat at 68 degrees Fahrenheit. If you are at home. According to, lowering the thermostat by 10 to 15 degrees for 8 hours per day can fetch you a cut down on energy usage by 5 to 15 percent bill. Try setting the thermostat a bit lower at night. You can use blanket to beat the cold.

• Broadly speaking, thermostat is of two types - electromechanical and electronic. Both of these are compatible with various types of heating and cooling units such as gas, oil, electric, and even hydronic heating systems, and air conditioners. However, electronic thermostats are more powerful than electromechanical models. The electronic sensing element can sample the outside air better than bi-metal sensors.

• It is always wise to use a programmable electronic thermostat to manage the energy cost of the house. The noted manufacturers have come up with state-of- the-art unit. You will not require fine-tuning the temperature every now and then. It can be programmed to run at particular temperatures at particular times of the day throughout a week. If you want your room to be cooler during sleep-time you can set it to low down about an hour before you usually go to bed. If you want it to be warmer at waking hours, you can set it accordingly. Similarly in winters at usual hours when you stay at home, it can go a bit higher, but it will run at moderate levels (energy-saving temperatures) when you are outside the house. There are some units which do not even need to be set. After operating for some time in your house they become hand-in-gloves with your preferences. They will automatically set themselves accordingly. These units can detect the presence of humans in the house. Most programmable thermostats are able to automatically adjust the temperature in your home up to six or more times per day. Remember, the automatic settings can be overridden manually ay time.

• Set the machine at “hold” button (constant energy-saving temperature) when you leave the house on a long vacation. Change the batteries as soon they run out.

Some limitations:

Programmable thermostats are generally not recommended for heat pumps. When the heat pump is cooling the house, manual or programmable thermostat will save energy and money. But when the same heat ppump will heat up the house by reversing the cycle, setting back its thermostat can make the unit to operate inefficiently. It will nullify the savings achieved in cooling mode. In case of heat pumps maintaining a moderate temperature is recommended. However today certain companies are offering specially designed programmable thermostats for heat pumps, which make setting back the thermostat cost-effective. They minimize the use of backup electric resistance heat systems by using special algorithms.

The fact remains that using a programmable thermostat can cut down the power bills significantly. Such saving will be more conspicuous in milder climates compared to severe ones.




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