There are many ways our technicians perform service under our comfort maintenance plans to help customers save money on their energy bills. The average homeowner has no idea what the ideal temperature setting is optimal for comfort and energy savings, and it seems as if they are playing Wheel of Fortune in a constant effort to solve that puzzle. Let’s face it, no one wants to bundle up in their ski parka during the winter just to keep the energy bills from being delivered by crate, or to be so hot in the summer they get carpal tunnel from fanning themselves.
Set Your Thermostat so you are Comfortable
Obviously, heating or cooling your house too much wastes money and energy, which is why the U.S. Department of Energy says to set your temperature at reasonable levels that ensure comfort. Of course, comfort is a relative term; you don’t want the family to be wearing sweaters in the summer and tank tops in the winter. However, in order to reduce your energy bills, and as recommended by our comfort maintenance plans, set your thermostat as follows:
- While you are home – 70 degrees in the winter/78 degrees in the summer
- While you are away – 62 degrees in the winter/85 degrees in the summer
- While you are sleeping – 62 degrees in the winter/82 degrees in the summer
Do Not Turn the Air Conditioner Off While Gone
Another tip offered through our comfort maintenance plans is not to turn off the air conditioner while you are away from home. We actually recommend installing a programmable thermostat that will adjust the temperature for you, relieving you of one more chore each day as you work to keep your energy bills affordable. In addition, turning down the thermostat will not cool your house faster, but will waste energy and money. Just how will it waste money, you ask? Well, it’s kind of like staring at the coffee pot in the morning – staring at it is not going to make the pot deliver that caffeine boost any faster. The coffee pot has no idea how tired you are in the morning, just like the thermostat only regulates temperature, it doesn’t know you are hot or cold. By turning it up when it is hot, or turning it down when it is cold, you aren’t going to cool or heat the house any faster, but just make the HVAC unit work harder. A harder working HVAC unit costs additional money, so investing in a programmable thermostat saves money by keeping your home cooler or warmer when you are there, but adjusting the temperature to less comfortable settings when you are not.
It’s Not the Heat; it’s the Humidity
We’ve all heard the old saying that dry heat is not as “hot” as moist heat, and that areas that are humid tend to feel warmer than dry climates at the same temperature. When the air is dry, your perspiration evaporates, naturally cooling your body; however, when it is humid, the sweat just stays there, not cooling you off and making you feel miserable. Our technicians indicate during comfort maintenance plans that people tend to lower the thermostat to relieve the humidity. Be sure that your air conditioning unit is the right size, because when it comes to HVAC, bigger is not always better. An air conditioning unit that is too large for your needs reduces the ability of the unit to remove moisture from the air, creating the damp feeling on your skin that you get on a cool, fall evening. The air is cooler, but uncomfortable, because moisture in the air remains. A unit that is too large will also cycle on and off frequently, adding to energy costs rather than reducing them. In addition, the use of ceiling fans or personal fans help the inhabitants of your home feel cooler simply by moving air and helping to evaporate perspiration, so consider investing in them to reduce your energy bills without adjusting your thermostat.
To learn more about our comfort maintenance plans, or to get additional tips on saving energy, visit us online or call (972) 375-9937.