You shouldn’t need to give up comfort or empty your wallet to keep your home at a refreshing temperature during summer weather.

But what is the best setting, exactly? We discuss ideas from energy experts so you can choose the best setting for your family.

Here’s what we recommend for the most energy-efficient setting for air conditioning in Manassas.

Recommended Thermostat Settings for Summer

Most households find placing the thermostat at 72-73 degrees provides ideal comfort. However, if there’s a major difference between your inside and outdoor temperatures, your electrical costs will be bigger.

These are our recommendations based on the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and ENERGY STAR®.

While at home: 78 degrees. While that appears hot, there are approaches you can keep your home cool without having the air conditioner going all the time.

Keeping windows and blinds down during the day keeps cool air where it belongs—inside. Some window solutions, such as honeycomb shades or plantation shutters, are made to give added insulation and enhanced energy conservation.

If you have ceiling fans in your residence, the DOE says you can raise thermostat temperatures about 4 degrees hotter without giving up comfort. That’s because they freshen through a windchill effect. Because they cool people, not rooms, switch them off when you exit a room.

If 78 degrees still feels too warm at first glance, try doing a test for approximately a week. Get started by upping your thermostat to 78 degrees while you’re at your residence. Then, progressively decrease it while using the ideas above. You might be amazed at how comfortable you feel at a higher temperature setting.

While away: 88 degrees. There’s no reason to keep the air conditioner going all day while your home is vacant. Switching the temp 7–10 degrees warmer can save you an estimated 5–15% on your air conditioning bills, according to the DOE.

When you arrive home, don’t be tempted to set your thermostat colder than 78 to cool your house more quickly. This isn’t effective and usually results in a more expensive electrical expense.

A programmable thermostat is a good approach to keep your settings in check, but you need to set programs. If you don’t utilize programs, you might forget to change the set temperature when you leave.

If you’re looking for a hassle-free fix, think over getting a smart thermostat. This thermostat links with your phone, so it knows when you’re at home and when you’re gone. Then it intuitively modifies temperature settings for maximum savings. How much exactly? Typically $180 annually on heating and cooling, according to ENERGY STAR.

Another advantage of getting a smart thermostat? You can use your phone to monitor and change temperature settings from just about anywhere.

While sleeping: Around 70 degrees. While ENERGY STAR advises 82 degrees, that may be unpleasant for many families. Most people sleep better when their sleeping area is chilly, so that’s why the National Sleep Foundation suggests 60–67 degrees. But that may be too cold, depending on your PJ and blanket preference.

We suggest trying an equivalent test over a week, setting your thermostat higher and slowly turning it down to locate the best setting for your residence. On cool nights, you might discover keeping windows open at night and relying on a ceiling fan is a superior option than running the AC.

More Ways to Use Less Energy This Summer

There are additional ways you can conserve money on cooling bills throughout the summer.

  1. Get an energy-efficient cooling system. Central air conditioners only work for about 12–15 years and lose efficiency as they get older. An upgraded air conditioner can keep your home cooler while keeping energy bills low.
  2. Set yearly air conditioner maintenance. Regular air conditioner maintenance keeps your system operating like it should and may help it work at better efficiency. It can also help prolong its life cycle, since it helps techs to spot little issues before they cause a major meltdown.
  3. Put in new air filters often. Use manufacturer instructions for switching your air filter. A dusty filter can result in your system short cycling, or run too often, and increase your energy.
  4. Measure attic insulation levels. Nearly 90% of residences in the U.S. don’t have proper insulation, according to the Insulation Institute. Many southern climates require 13–14” of attic insulation, while northern climates need 16–18”.
  5. Have your ductwork examined. Ductwork that has separated over time can seep cold air into your attic, walls or crawl space. This can result in huge comfort issues in your residence, such as hot and cold spots.
  6. Seal openings, doors and windows. Keep hot air in its place by sealing cracks. You can also caulk or weather strip doors to trap more cold air inside.

Conserve More Energy During Warm Weather with Air-Right Energy Design

If you want to use less energy during warm weather, our Air-Right Energy Design pros can assist you. Get in touch with us at 703-260-1148 or contact us online for more information about our energy-saving cooling options.