Whats the Most Energy-Efficient AC Setting?

June 04, 2020

You shouldn’t be forced to compromise on comfort or spend a lot to keep your home at the right setting during the summer.

But what is the best temp, exactly? We discuss suggestions from energy experts so you can choose the best temp for your family.

Here’s what we advise for the most energy-efficient setting for air conditioning in Rapid City.

Recommended Thermostat Settings for Summer

Most households find using the thermostat at 72-73 degrees provides ideal comfort. However, if there’s a big difference between your inside and outdoor warmth, your cooling expenses will be larger.

This is our advice based on the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and ENERGY STAR®.

While at home: 78 degrees. While that sounds hot, there are approaches you can keep your home pleasant without having the air conditioning on frequently.

Keeping windows and window treatments shut during the day keeps cool air where it needs to be—indoors. Some window treatments, like honeycomb shades or plantation shutters, are made to offer more insulation and enhanced energy savings.

If you have ceiling fans in your house, the DOE says you can move thermostat temps about 4 degrees warmer without sacrificing comfort. That’s because they refresh through a windchill effect. Since they cool people, not rooms, turn them off when you move from a room.

If 78 degrees still seems too uncomfortable at first glance, try conducting a trial for approximately a week. Begin by increasing your setting to 78 degrees while you’re at your residence. Then, gradually turn it down while following the suggestions above. You might be astonished at how cool you feel at a higher temperature setting.

While away: 88 degrees. There’s no rationale for keeping the air conditioner running all day while your home is unoccupied. Turning the setting 7¬¬–10 degrees warmer can save you an estimated 5–15% on your electricity costs, according to the DOE.

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

A programmable thermostat is a helpful way to keep your settings under control, but you need to set programs. If you don’t utilize programs, you might forget to increase the set temperature when you leave.

If you need a handy resolution, consider getting a smart thermostat. This thermostat works with with your phone, so it realizes when you’re at your house and when you’re out. Then it intuitively changes temperature settings for the best savings. How much exactly? Usually $180 yearly on heating and cooling, according to ENERGY STAR.

Another perk of installing a smart thermostat? You can use your phone to keep an eye on and regulate temperature settings from just about anywhere.

While sleeping: Around 70 degrees. While ENERGY STAR advises 82 degrees, that could be unbearable for most families. Most people sleep better when their sleeping area is chilly, so that’s why the National Sleep Foundation advises 60–67 degrees. But that could be too cold, depending on your clothing and blanket preference.

We recommend running a similar test over a week, setting your temp higher and progressively decreasing it to find the ideal setting for your house. On pleasant nights, you may discover keeping windows open at night and relying on a ceiling fan is a preferable option than using the air conditioner.

More Ways to Save Energy This Summer

There are extra ways you can spend less money on energy bills throughout the summer.

  1. Get an energy-efficient cooling system. Central air conditioners only work for about 12–15 years and lose efficiency as they age. An updated air conditioner can keep your home cooler while keeping electricity
  2. expenses small.
  3. Book yearly air conditioner tune-ups. Routine air conditioner maintenance keeps your unit operating properly and could help it run more efficiently. It might also help lengthen its life expectancy, since it enables professionals to uncover small issues before they lead to an expensive meltdown.
  4. Replace air filters frequently. Follow manufacturer instructions for switching your air filter. A dusty filter can cause your system to short cycle, or turn on and off too much, and raise your electrical
  5. bills.
  6. Check attic insulation levels. Nearly 90% of residences in the U.S. don’t have enough insulation, according to the Insulation Institute. The majority of southern climates should have 13–14” of attic insulation, while northern climates require 16–18”.
  7. Have your ductwork examined. Ductwork that has loosened over time can seep cool air into your attic, walls or crawl space. This can lead to big comfort issues in your house, like hot and cold spots.
  8. Seal cracks, doors and windows. Keep hot air in its place by plugging holes. You can also caulk or weather strip doors to trap more conditioned air within your home.

Save More Energy During Warm Weather with Street Heating and Cooling

If you want to use less energy during warm weather, our Street Heating and Cooling specialists can help. Reach us at 605-206-3915 or contact us online for more details about our energy-conserving cooling solutions.