Whats the Most Energy-Efficient AC Setting?

June 04, 2020

You shouldn’t have to compromise on comfort or empty your wallet to keep your home at a refreshing temp during muggy weather.

But what is the right temp, exactly? We review advice from energy experts so you can find the best temp for your house.

Here’s what we recommend for the most energy-efficient setting for air conditioning in Tucson.

Recommended Thermostat Settings for Summer

Most people find setting the thermostat at 72-73 degrees is ideal. However, if there’s a sizeable difference between your indoor and outdoor temps, your utility expenses will be higher.

These are our suggestions based on the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and ENERGY STAR®.

While at home: 78 degrees. While that seems hot, there are approaches you can keep your home refreshing without having the air conditioning running frequently.

Keeping windows and curtains shut during the day keeps cool air where it belongs—indoors. Some window coverings, like honeycomb shades or plantation shutters, are created to offer added insulation and enhanced energy efficiency.

If you have ceiling fans in your house, the DOE says you can move thermostat temperatures about 4 degrees warmer without sacrificing comfort. That’s since they cool with a windchill effect. As they cool people, not rooms, shut them off when you exit a room.

If 78 degrees still feels too warm at first glance, try doing a trial for about a week. Get started by upping your setting to 78 degrees while you’re home. Then, progressively decrease it while following the advice above. You may be amazed at how comfortable you feel at a warmer temperature setting.

While away: 88 degrees. There’s no need to keep the air conditioning running all day while your home is unoccupied. Turning the temperature 7¬¬–10 degrees hotter can save you an estimated 5–15% on your electricity bills, according to the DOE.

When you get home, don’t be tempted to switch your thermostat below 78 to cool your home more rapidly. This isn’t useful and typically produces a higher cooling expense.

A programmable thermostat is a good method to keep your settings controlled, but you have to set programs. If you don’t set programs, you might forget to increase the set temperature when you go.

If you’re looking for a handy solution, consider installing a smart thermostat. This thermostat connects with your phone, so it knows when you’re at your house and when you’re out. Then it instinctively adjusts temperature settings for maximum savings. How much exactly? Typically $180 yearly on heating and cooling, according to ENERGY STAR.

Another benefit of getting a smart thermostat? You can use your phone to monitor and adjust temperature settings from almost anywhere.

While sleeping: Around 70 degrees. While ENERGY STAR advises 82 degrees, that could be unpleasant for many families. Many people sleep better when their sleeping area is chilled, so that’s why the National Sleep Foundation recommends 60–67 degrees. But that may be too cold, due to your PJ and blanket preference.

We suggest running a comparable test over a week, putting your temp higher and progressively decreasing it to locate the ideal temp for your family. On mild nights, you could find keeping windows open at night and running a ceiling fan is a superior solution than using the AC.

More Ways to Conserve Energy During Hot Weather

There are additional approaches you can spend less money on energy bills throughout hot weather.

  1. Buy an energy-efficient air conditioning system. Central air conditioners only last about 12–15 years and get less efficient as they become older. An updated air conditioner can keep your house comfier while keeping electricity
  2. costs low.
  3. Schedule yearly air conditioning maintenance. Routine air conditioner maintenance keeps your unit working smoothly and may help it work more efficiently. It might also help prolong its life cycle, since it enables technicians to pinpoint seemingly insignificant problems before they create a big meltdown.
  4. Switch air filters frequently. Read manufacturer instructions for switching your air filter. A clogged filter can lead to your system short cycling, or switch on and off too often, and drive up your electrical
  5. costs.
  6. Measure attic insulation levels. Just about 90% of houses in the United States don’t have proper insulation, according to the Insulation Institute. Many southern climates should have 13–14” of attic insulation, while northern climates need 16–18”.
  7. Have your ductwork checked. Ductwork that has loosened over the years can leak cool air into your attic, walls or crawl space. This can result in huge comfort troubles in your house, like hot and cold spots.
  8. Seal openings, doors and windows. Keep warm air where it should be by closing openings. You can also caulk or weather strip doors to seal more cold air within your home.

Use Less Energy This Summer with A&M Heating & Cooling LLC

If you need to use less energy this summer, our A&M Heating & Cooling LLC professionals can provide assistance. Get in touch with us at 520-200-1048 or contact us online for extra information about our energy-conserving cooling solutions.