Whats the Most Energy-Efficient AC Setting?

June 04, 2020

You shouldn’t have to sacrifice comfort or drain your wallet to keep your residence at a pleasant temp during muggy weather.

But what is the ideal temp, exactly? We go over recommendations from energy specialists so you can determine the best temperature for your family.

Here’s what we suggest for the most energy-efficient setting for air conditioning in Cedar Rapids.

Recommended Thermostat Settings for Summer

Most households find using the thermostat at 72-73 degrees is ideal. However, if there’s a major difference between your interior and outdoor temps, your cooling expenses will be larger.

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

While at home: 78 degrees. While that seems warm, there are methods you can keep your residence cool without having the air conditioner on all the time.

Keeping windows and window treatments down during the day keeps chilled air where it needs to be—inside. Some window solutions, like honeycomb shades or plantation shutters, are created to offer added insulation and improved energy efficiency.

If you have ceiling fans in your home, the DOE says you can move thermostat temps about 4 degrees warmer without compromising comfort. That’s due to the fact they cool with a windchill effect. Because they cool people, not spaces, shut them off when you move from a room.

If 78 degrees still feels too uncomfortable on the surface, try doing a trial for a week or so. Get started by increasing your temperature to 78 degrees while you’re at your residence. Then, progressively turn it down while following the tips above. You may be shocked at how refreshed you feel at a warmer temperature setting.

While away: 88 degrees. There’s no need to keep the air conditioner running all day while your residence is unoccupied. Turning the temperature 7¬¬–10 degrees higher can save you as much as 5–15% on your cooling bills, according to the DOE.

When you get home, don’t be tempted to switch your thermostat colder than 78 to cool your house faster. This isn’t productive and usually results in a higher electricity expense.

A programmable thermostat is a good approach to keep your settings in check, but you have to set programs. If you don’t use programs, you run the risk of forgetting to change the set temperature when you leave.

If you need a convenient resolution, think about getting a smart thermostat. This thermostat links with your phone, so it realizes when you’re at home and when you’re away. Then it intuitively modifies temperature settings for the best savings. How much exactly? Typically $180 yearly on heating and cooling, according to ENERGY STAR.

Another benefit of having a smart thermostat? You can use your phone to keep an eye on and regulate temperature settings from nearly anywhere.

While sleeping: Around 70 degrees. While ENERGY STAR suggests 82 degrees, that could be unpleasant for most families. Many people sleep better when their bedroom is cold, so that’s why the National Sleep Foundation advises 60–67 degrees. But that may be too cool, depending on your PJ and blanket preference.

We recommend following a comparable test over a week, moving your temperature higher and slowly turning it down to find the right setting for your residence. On mild nights, you may learn keeping windows open at night and using a ceiling fan is a better idea than using the air conditioner.

More Approaches to Use Less Energy This Summer

There are other approaches you can conserve money on cooling bills throughout the summer.

  1. Upgrade to an energy-efficient AC system. Central air conditioners only are effective for about 12–15 years and lose efficiency as they get older. A new air conditioner can keep your home more comfortable while keeping electrical
  2. costs small.
  3. Schedule yearly AC tune-ups. Regular air conditioner maintenance keeps your equipment operating properly and may help it run at greater efficiency. It can also help lengthen its life span, since it allows techs to discover little problems before they create an expensive meltdown.
  4. Replace air filters often. Follow manufacturer instructions for changing your air filter. A dirty filter can cause your system to short cycle, or turn on and off too often, and drive up your electricity
  5. costs.
  6. Check attic insulation levels. Almost 90% of houses in the United States don’t have adequate insulation, according to the Insulation Institute. Most southern climates should have 13–14” of attic insulation, while northern climates need 16–18”.
  7. Have your ductwork checked. Ductwork that has separated as it’s aged can seep cold air into your attic, walls or crawl space. This can result in major comfort troubles in your residence, such as hot and cold spots.
  8. Seal openings, doors and windows. Keep warm air where it should be by closing cracks. You can also caulk or weather strip doors to trap more cool air inside.

Save More Energy During Hot Weather with Ilten's Incorporated

If you need to conserve more energy this summer, our Ilten's Incorporated professionals can help. Get in touch with us at 319-208-3295 or contact us online for additional information about our energy-conserving cooling products.