Whats the Most Energy-Efficient AC Setting?

June 04, 2020

You shouldn’t need to compromise on comfort or spend a lot to keep your house at the right setting during summer weather.

But what is the best setting, exactly? We review recommendations from energy specialists so you can choose the best setting for your family.

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

Recommended Thermostat Settings for Summer

Most families find placing the thermostat at 72-73 degrees is ideal. However, if there’s a sizeable difference between your inside and exterior temperatures, your electricity expenses will be bigger.

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

While at home: 78 degrees. While that sounds warm, there are approaches you can keep your home cool without having the air conditioner running constantly.

Keeping windows and blinds down during the day keeps cold air where it should be—inside. Some window solutions, such as honeycomb shades or plantation shutters, are designed to offer added insulation and enhanced energy conservation.

If you have ceiling fans in your house, the DOE says you can move thermostat settings about 4 degrees higher without compromising comfort. That’s due to the fact they refresh through a windchill effect. As they cool people, not rooms, turn them off when you exit a room.

If 78 degrees still feels too warm initially, try running a trial for about a week. Get started by increasing your temperature to 78 degrees while you’re at your residence. Then, steadily turn it down while following the tips above. You may be astonished at how comfortable you feel at a higher temperature setting.

While away: 88 degrees. There’s no need to keep the AC working all day while your residence is unoccupied. Moving the temperature 7¬¬–10 degrees hotter can save you anywhere from 5–15% on your electrical bills, according to the DOE.

When you get home, don’t be tempted to switch your thermostat colder than 78 to cool your home more quickly. This isn’t productive and typically produces a more expensive cooling expense.

A programmable thermostat is a good approach to keep your settings controlled, but you need to set programs. If you don’t utilize programs, you risk forgetting to increase the set temperature when you go.

If you need a handy resolution, think over installing a smart thermostat. This thermostat connects with your phone, so it is aware when you’re at your residence and when you’re away. Then it instinctively modifies temperature settings for maximum savings. How much exactly? Usually $180 annually 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 just about anywhere.

While sleeping: Around 70 degrees. While ENERGY STAR recommends 82 degrees, that may be unbearable for most families. Many people sleep better when their sleeping space is cold, so that’s why the National Sleep Foundation advises 60–67 degrees. But that might be too cool, due to your clothing and blanket preference.

We advise trying a comparable test over a week, moving your temp higher and slowly lowering it to pinpoint the best temperature for your family. On mild nights, you could learn keeping windows open at night and running a ceiling fan is a preferable solution than using the air conditioning.

More Approaches to Conserve Energy During Hot Weather

There are added methods you can save money on air conditioning bills throughout the summer.

  1. Upgrade to an energy-efficient air conditioning system. Central air conditioners only work for about 12–15 years and lose efficiency as they become older. An upgraded air conditioner can keep your home cooler while keeping electricity
  2. costs low.
  3. Schedule yearly air conditioning tune-ups. Routine air conditioner maintenance keeps your equipment running smoothly and could help it work at greater efficiency. It may also help extend its life cycle, since it allows technicians to spot little problems before they lead to a big meltdown.
  4. Replace air filters frequently. Follow manufacturer instructions for switching your air filter. A clogged filter can lead to your system short cycling, or turn on and off too much, and increase your cooling
  5. bills.
  6. Inspect attic insulation levels. Just about 90% of homes in the U.S. don’t have adequate insulation, according to the Insulation Institute. Many southern climates should have 13–14” of attic insulation, while northern climates should have 16–18”.
  7. Have your ductwork inspected. Ductwork that has loosened as it’s aged can leak cool air into your attic, walls or crawl space. This can create major comfort problems in your house, such as hot and cold spots.
  8. Seal cracks, doors and windows. Keep humid air where it should be by closing cracks. You can also caulk or weather strip doors to keep more conditioned air inside.

Save More Energy This Summer with Ambient Air

If you need to conserve more energy during hot weather, our Ambient Air pros can provide assistance. Reach us at 520-357-4912 or contact us online for additional information about our energy-efficient cooling products.