The Great Misunderstanding about Thermostat Settings

We recently posted about the many options available for thermostats and how the right thermostat can help you save money. If you are considering upgrading your thermostat in Chandler, AZ, make certain that you contact our HVAC professionals first. You may not know this, but trying to put in a thermostat on your own can end up invalidating your equipment warranty! An advanced thermostat can end up damaging an HVAC system if it’s improperly paired with it and installed sloppily. Our technicians have the knowledge and skill to ensure you have the right new climate controls without risking the system warranty.

Curious and maybe a bit confused about all your thermostat choices? We’re glad to assist you with navigating the options! Contact us in Phoenix, AZ today.

In this post we’re going address something a bit more low-tech when it comes to thermostats: finding the right settings for another scorching Arizona summer. Too many people make mistakes when adjusting their thermostat based on misunderstandings about how the thermostat and the conditioner works.

The Big Mistake People Make with Thermostats

Okay, let’s take a look at the average thermostat. How low can it be set? Usually it’s 60°F. Now imagine a typical Phoenix summer day with a temperature of 100°F. With heat that intense, doesn’t it make sense to turn down the thermostat as low as possible? It means your house will get cooler much faster, and you’ll be really “fighting back” against all the outdoor heat…

…except this isn’t how heat and the HVAC system works. Lowering the thermostat isn’t the same thing as opening up a throttle. The house won’t get cooler any quicker, and not only won’t the lower temperature “push back” against the heat, it will actually allow heat to come in faster!

There are two important facts to know here:

  1. A thermostat is a type of switch, not a throttle. It controls when to turn on and off the compressor and the fans of the HVAC system. When you set the thermostat to cool off your house, the thermostat runs the compressor until it registers it has reached the temperature setting. A lower setting isn’t making the AC work faster, it’s only making it run longer.
  2. The larger the difference in temperatures between the inside and the outside of a house, the faster heat moves from one to the other. If you cool your house down to 60°F when it’s 100°F outside, the heat will move faster indoors—and you’ll have to keep running the AC to maintain that low temperature.

Thermostat Settings to Save Energy and Provide Comfort

Here is what we recommend for comfort: set the thermostat higher. Raise it to as high a temperature as your household will find comfortable. For each degree you raise the thermostat, you’ll save from 1% to 2% off your cooling bills.

Where’s a good temperature to start? The U.S. Department of Energy recommends 78°F during the day when people are home. Your household may find this a bit warm at first. If this is the case, we suggest you lower the temperature to a comfortable level and then raise it by one degree each day until people become accustomed to the new setting. An indoor temperature of 78°F should be quite relaxing when the outside thermostat is up above 100°F!

During the evening or times when nobody is home, raise the temperature from the daytime setting by 8° to 10°F. This can contribute to an additional 10% savings over the summer.

Programming your thermostat for ideal settings is easier when you have advanced thermostat technology. Talk to us today and we can help you find the best way to cool your house while saving money on air conditioning in Gilbert, AZ.

Magic Touch Mechanical: Comfort, Health & Energy Savings. Call us today to experience our award-winning customer service first-hand. We look forward to exceeding your expectations!