You shouldn’t be forced to sacrifice comfort or drain your wallet to keep your home at the right temperature during summer weather.

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

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

Recommended Thermostat Settings for Summer

Most families find placing the thermostat at 72-73 degrees provides ideal comfort. However, if there’s a sizeable difference between your indoor and outside temperatures, your AC expenses will be greater.

This is our advice based on the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and ENERGY STAR®.

While at home: 78 degrees. While that seems hot, there are ways you can keep your house refreshing without having the air conditioning running constantly.

Keeping windows and window treatments down during the day keeps chilled air where it needs to be—inside. Some window coverings, such as honeycomb shades or plantation shutters, are made to offer added insulation and improved energy savings.

If you have ceiling fans in your house, the DOE says you can raise thermostat settings about 4 degrees higher without giving up comfort. That’s because they cool by a windchill effect. As they cool people, not rooms, switch them off when you exit a room.

If 78 degrees still appears too uncomfortable initially, try doing a trial for approximately a week. Start by increasing your temperature to 78 degrees while you’re home. Then, steadily turn it down while adhering to the advice above. You could be surprised at how comfortable you feel at a higher temperature setting.

While away: 88 degrees. There’s no reason to keep the AC going all day while your house is unoccupied. Switching the temp 7–10 degrees warmer can save you anywhere from 5–15% on your electrical costs, according to the DOE.

When you arrive home, don’t be tempted to switch your thermostat under 78 to cool your home faster. This isn’t productive and usually leads to a bigger AC bill.

A programmable thermostat is a useful approach to keep your temp under control, but you have to set programs. If you don’t set programs, you risk forgetting to increase the set temperature when you go.

If you want a hassle-free remedy, consider buying a smart thermostat. This thermostat works with with your phone, so it realizes when you’re at your residence and when you’re away. Then it intuitively adjusts temperature settings for the biggest savings. How much exactly? Usually $180 each year on heating and cooling, according to ENERGY STAR.

Another plus of having a smart thermostat? You can use your phone to monitor and adjust temperature settings from nearly anywhere.

While sleeping: Around 70 degrees. While ENERGY STAR advises 82 degrees, that may be too uncomfortable for many families. The majority of people sleep better when their bedroom is chilly, so that’s why the National Sleep Foundation recommends 60–67 degrees. But that could be too cool, depending on your PJ and blanket preference.

We advise running a comparable test over a week, putting your temp higher and gradually lowering it to pinpoint the ideal temperature for your residence. On pleasant nights, you might learn keeping windows open at night and using a ceiling fan is a better option than running the AC.

More Approaches to Conserve Energy During Hot Weather

There are additional approaches you can spend less money on energy bills throughout the summer.

  1. Upgrade to an energy-efficient AC system. Central air conditioners only are effective for about 12–15 years and lose efficiency as they age. An upgraded air conditioner can keep your residence comfier while keeping utility bills down.
  2. Schedule regular air conditioner service. Routine air conditioner maintenance keeps your system working smoothly and might help it work at greater efficiency. It may also help extend its life span, since it enables techs to spot small troubles before they cause a major meltdown.
  3. Put in new air filters frequently. Use manufacturer instructions for replacing your air filter. A clogged filter can result in your system short cycling, or run too frequently, and increase your electricity.
  4. Measure attic insulation levels. Almost 90% of homes in the United States don’t have enough insulation, according to the Insulation Institute. The majority of southern climates should have 13–14” of attic insulation, while northern climates require 16–18”.
  5. Have your ductwork inspected. Ductwork that has come apart over time can seep cool air into your attic, walls or crawl space. This can create major comfort troubles in your home, including hot and cold spots.
  6. Seal holes, doors and windows. Keep muggy air in its place by plugging holes. You can also caulk or weather strip doors to trap more cool air within your home.

Conserve More Energy During Warm Weather with Gilray Heating and Cooling

If you are looking to conserve more energy during hot weather, our Gilray Heating and Cooling pros can provide assistance. Give us a call at 715-301-0727 or contact us online for more details about our energy-saving cooling solutions.