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“The average household spends more than $2,200 a year on energy bills – nearly half of which goes to heating and cooling. Homeowners can save about $180 a year by properly setting their programmable thermostats and maintaining those settings.”
It seems we never really think of the consequences of tampering with our thermostats until the energy bill arrives. With energy costs soaring, installing and using a programmable thermostat is a wise move both financially and environmentally.
The thermostat inside your home is responsible for keeping you comfortable. It works by detecting the temperature of the surrounding area to control the air conditioning unit and furnace. Many times, we prefer different temperatures for different activities inside the home. A programmable thermostat reduces the demand placed on your heating and cooling units by allowing the temperature settings to rise or lower depending on the heating or cooling needs of the season and requirements of the zone being controlled. People who are regularly away from home during set times throughout the week are ideal candidates for using a programmable thermostat.
When you decide to buy a programmable thermostat, you need to consider your schedule. Programmable thermostats come in three different models: 7-day, 5+2 day, and 5-1-1 models.
This model is perfect for persons with an irregular schedule. With a seven-day setting, you can customize your comfort settings for each day of the week. For example, if you have a fluctuating work schedule and the time you leave and return home from work on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday is different from Friday & Saturday, you can create separate temperature schedules for each of those days – as well as your days off.
For those with a fairly regular schedule, a 5+2 model works great. You can program your thermostat for Monday through Friday and keep a separate setting for Saturday and Sunday.
This model is similar to the 5+2 model, only instead of the same setting for your weekends, you can program Saturday and Sunday separately.
Regardless of the model you choose, the following temperature adjustments are recommended for you to benefit from reduced energy consumption and cost:
Decrease your set point by 8 degrees during periods of inactivity or absence.
Increase your set point by 7 degrees during periods of absence, and 4 degrees during inactivity.
To get the most from your programmable thermostat, consult with your HVAC company on how to optimize efficiency during your next maintenance visit.
For more tips, how-tos and other great information on your home air conditioning, heating, air quality and more visit the Service Champions Blog.