Is There a Correct Way to Use My Thermostat?
Your home’s energy efficiency depends in large part on an item you might take for granted: your home thermostat. The proper usage of your home thermostat can save you greatly on your monthly energy bills. While your home thermostat is a simple tool, there are some basic mistakes homeowners make that could be costing them. Here are some tips to get the most out of your thermostat and heating and cooling system.
The first step to energy efficiency is ensuring your thermostat is installed properly. If you install an incompatible thermostat, or if one is installed sloppily, you could damage your HVAC system. Always check with your local HVAC specialists if you are uncertain of your thermostat’s compatibility and installation.
Once you have the best thermostat for your requirements, you must know how to set the temperature for maximum efficiency. Heating and cooling systems work best when programmed for longer periods. For example, a good thermostat schedule would see the home set to one temperature during the day, when no one is home, and another, more comfortable temperature setting during the night when everyone is home. Letting your system run for at least eight hours at a time per setting is optimal.
Many homeowners will bump their system up or down depending on the weather outside. This is, typically, unnecessary. Instead, the more energy-saving method would be to choose an indoor temperature that is comfortable year-round. Using temporary override settings on programmable thermostats actually use more energy than long-term, programmed schedules. Also, it is good to note that your thermostat does not control how fast your home heats or cools. It only controls the final temperatures it will reach.
Finally, if your home thermostat runs on batteries, make sure they are changed out each year. That is unless it indicates that it needs them sooner. This will ensure that your chosen energy-saving settings will be maintained throughout the year.