You shouldn’t need to sacrifice comfort or spend a lot to keep your residence at the right setting during hot days.

But what is the right temperature, exactly? We discuss ideas from energy professionals so you can choose the best setting for your home.

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

Recommended Thermostat Settings for Summer

Most people find setting the thermostat at 72-73 degrees is ideal. However, if there’s a huge difference between your inside and outside temperatures, your utility bills will be greater.

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 residence cool without having the air conditioning running frequently.

Keeping windows and window treatments down during the day keeps chilled air where it belongs—within your home. Some window solutions, such as honeycomb shades or plantation shutters, are created to give more insulation and better energy efficiency.

If you have ceiling fans in your home, the DOE says you can increase thermostat temperatures about 4 degrees warmer without compromising comfort. That’s since they cool through a windchill effect. Since they cool people, not spaces, switch them off when you exit a room.

If 78 degrees still seems too warm initially, try conducting a trial for about a week. Start by upping your temperature to 78 degrees while you’re home. Then, steadily turn it down while using the suggestions above. You might be surprised at how comfortable you feel at a higher temperature setting.

While away: 88 degrees. There’s no reason to keep the air conditioning running all day while your home is empty. Switching the temp 7–10 degrees hotter can save you anywhere from 5–15% on your electricity bills, according to the DOE.

When you come home, don’t be tempted to put your thermostat below 78 to cool your house faster. This isn’t productive and usually results in a higher electrical bill.

A programmable thermostat is a good method to keep your temperature under control, but it requires setting programs. If you don’t use programs, you run the risk of forgetting to move the set temperature when you go.

If you want a hassle-free resolution, consider installing a smart thermostat. This thermostat connects with your phone, so it is aware when you’re at home and when you’re out. Then it instinctively changes temperature settings for the biggest savings. How much exactly? Typically $180 annually on heating and cooling, according to ENERGY STAR.

Another plus of getting a smart thermostat? You can use your phone to watch and regulate temperature settings from almost anywhere.

While sleeping: Around 70 degrees. While ENERGY STAR recommends 82 degrees, that may be too uncomfortable for many families. Many people sleep better when their sleeping area is chilled, so that’s why the National Sleep Foundation suggests 60–67 degrees. But that could be too chilly, depending on your pajama and blanket preference.

We advise using an equivalent test over a week, setting your temp higher and slowly turning it down to pinpoint the ideal setting for your residence. On cool nights, you may find keeping windows open at night and relying on a ceiling fan is a superior option than running the AC.

More Methods to Use Less Energy During Warm Weather

There are extra methods you can conserve money on cooling bills throughout the summer.

  1. Upgrade to an energy-efficient cooling system. Central air conditioners only last about 12–15 years and lose efficiency as they age. A new air conditioner can keep your house more comfortable while keeping energy costs down.
  2. Book yearly air conditioner maintenance. Routine air conditioner maintenance keeps your system operating properly and might help it work at better efficiency. It may also help extend its life cycle, since it allows professionals to pinpoint little issues before they lead to a major meltdown.
  3. Change air filters often. Read manufacturer instructions for changing your air filter. A clogged filter can cause your system to short cycle, or run too often, and raise your electrical.
  4. Inspect attic insulation levels. Nearly 90% of residences in the United States don’t have proper insulation, according to the Insulation Institute. The majority of southern climates require 13–14” of attic insulation, while northern climates require 16–18”.
  5. Have your ductwork examined. Ductwork that has come apart over time can let cold air into your attic, walls or crawl space. This can result in huge comfort troubles in your residence, like hot and cold spots.
  6. Seal openings, doors and windows. Keep hot air in its place by plugging cracks. You can also caulk or weather strip doors to keep more conditioned air inside.

Use Less Energy This Summer with Fire & Ice HVAC

If you are looking to use less energy during warm weather, our Fire & Ice HVAC professionals can assist you. Get in touch with us at 703-595-4157 or contact us online for more information about our energy-saving cooling solutions.