With summer in full swing, high electric bills from running the air conditioner are starting to hit mailboxes across the country. One of the first tips people who are looking to increase their energy efficiency are given is install a programmable thermostat. But do they really work?
Do Programmable Thermostats Save Money?
On average, turning down the thermostat by one degree for eight hours per day increases your cooling costs by one percent. Most people are aware of this and try to keep their thermostat higher during the summer. They might also turn it up by five to 10 degrees when they leave for work each day — this could bring a five to 10 percent savings.
These adjustments can be made by hand, and a programmable thermostat by itself doesn't save energy. But when a programmable thermostat is used properly, it can automate this process and provide maximum savings and comfort.
How to Properly Use a Programmable Thermostat
The key to using a programmable thermostat is to set it and forget it. People who constantly fiddle with the temperature and override its programming effectively erase all of its savings. To get the most out of your programmable thermostat, set the AC controls as follows:
- Have it raise to 85 degrees at the time your normally leave for work or just before.
- Set it to 78 an hour or two before you return home so your house is cool by the time you come home.
- If you like your house cooler at night, have it drop a few degrees before bedtime.
- Have the temperature return to 78 a few hours before you wake up.
If you follow the above steps, and then leave your programmable thermostat alone, you should see your electric bills drop. To learn more about how you can bring reduced cooling costs to your home, contact Comfort24-7. We have over 40 trusted local contractors throughout the Chicagoland, Northwest Indiana, and Southwest Michigan area.