During the winter months, how do you set your thermostat for comfort? It’s tempting to turn it up high, maybe around 85°F (often the highest setting on a thermostat) to get the home warmed up as fast as possible, and then turn it back down when things start to seem too stuffy. This is how many people operate and program their thermostats during the season. Unfortunately, it’s wasteful and places extra strain on the heater.
Here’s Why High Indoor Temperatures Are Wasteful
People often misunderstand how thermostats actually work. Even the most intricate “smart” thermostat with multiple features still functions essentially as a switch: it turns the heater and blower on and off based on the readings of the temperature. When the thermostat is pushed up to a high setting, it isn’t making the heater itself provide a larger volume of heat or even provide it faster. It’s only instructing the heater to continue running until it registers it’s reached the temperature setting.
Shorter version: A higher temperature just makes the heater run longer. There’s no benefit to it—you won’t like the high temperature—and it causes the system to run more than it should. This wastes energy and puts additional strain on the heater that can lead to malfunctions and a shortened service life.
There’s another problem with high temperature settings: the greater the difference between the temperature inside and outside, the faster the inside will lose heat. When the temperature is kept at a lower setting and remains steady, the house will lose heat slower. The heating system won’t have to work as much to make up for the lost heat.
Our recommendation for energy-saving settings for your thermostat our to place it at 68°F during times when people are home during the day, then to lower it by 8°F when people are asleep at night. This can reduce heating costs over the season by 10%–15%. If you update from an old manual thermostat to a programmable or “smart” thermostat, the savings will be even greater.
Comfort Zone Heating & Cooling offers quality heating services to Marietta and Cumming, GA. Call our customer service specialists at 770-213-COOL (2665) and let us know how we can help.