Energy costs for cooling and heating for a typical household amount to approximately half of its total energy expenditures. Programmable thermostats can help cut the energy used by HVAC equipment by controlling when the system runs and the temperature at which the system conditions the home based on your occupancy patterns.
If you’re away routinely or have a tendency to forget to adjust the thermostat, a programmable thermostat will do the work for you. These devices employ technology that keeps track of when to change the temperature for optimum energy savings. Some of the “smart” thermostats available today use sensors that can tell when you’re home is empty to help you save even more. Most programmable thermostats allow you to have four to six different settings for each day of the week so you can easily set it based on your family’s occupancy patterns.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) reports that you can save up to 10 percent on air conditioning and heating annually simply by changing the thermostat’s settings by 7 to 10 degrees F when you’re not home or don’t need excessive cooling or heating.
The DOE has also found that turning the temperature up or down by 10 to 15 degrees saves even more energy, particularly in mild climates like ours. However, turning it up too much in the summer may allow excessive heat and humidity gain in your home. Keeping the preferred temperature around 78 degrees and bumping it up to 85 degrees while you’re away will trim your cooling bills significantly. Using ceiling fans at night will allow you to raise the overnight temperature.
If you use a heat pump, you’ll probably need to use an intelligent recovery thermostat. In the summer, the heat pump will operate just like an air conditioner, but in the heating mode, this kind of thermostat saves energy because it overrides the auxiliary heating coil when it’s not needed.
If you’d like more information about energy savings with programmable thermostats, please contact us at Bryans United Air Conditioning, providing superior HVAC services for homeowners in the New Orleans area since 1982.
Written by Zach Mouton
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