You shouldn’t have to compromise on comfort or drain your wallet to keep your house at a refreshing temp during muggy weather.

But what is the best temp, exactly? We review recommendations from energy experts so you can determine the best setting for your family.

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

Recommended Thermostat Settings for Summer

Most households find using the thermostat at 72-73 degrees is ideal. However, if there’s a huge difference between your inside and outdoor temps, your electrical bills will be higher.

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

While at home: 78 degrees. While that appears warm, there are methods you can keep your house cool without having the air conditioning on frequently.

Keeping windows and curtains shut during the day keeps cool air where it should be—inside. Some window solutions, like honeycomb shades or plantation shutters, are designed to deliver extra insulation and improved energy efficiency.

If you have ceiling fans in your residence, the DOE says you can raise thermostat temps about 4 degrees higher without sacrificing comfort. That’s due to the fact they freshen by a windchill effect. As they cool people, not areas, shut them off when you exit a room.

If 78 degrees still seems too uncomfortable at first glance, try running a trial for approximately a week. Begin by raising your temperature to 78 degrees while you’re at your residence. Then, progressively turn it down while following the ideas above. You could be shocked at how refreshed you feel at a hotter temperature setting.

While away: 88 degrees. There’s no reason to keep the AC running all day while your home is vacant. Turning the temp 7–10 degrees warmer can save you as much as 5–15% on your electrical costs, according to the DOE.

When you arrive home, don’t be tempted to put your thermostat below 78 to cool your residence more quickly. This isn’t productive and typically produces a bigger electricity cost.

A programmable thermostat is a good approach to keep your temperature controlled, but you need to set programs. If you don’t utilize programs, you run the risk of forgetting to increase the set temperature when you go.

If you need a convenient remedy, think about buying a smart thermostat. This thermostat works with with your phone, so it knows when you’re at your residence and when you’re away. Then it intuitively changes temperature settings for maximum savings. How much exactly? About $180 yearly on heating and cooling, according to ENERGY STAR.

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

While sleeping: Around 70 degrees. While ENERGY STAR suggests 82 degrees, that might be unpleasant for the majority of families. Most people sleep better when their sleeping space is chilled, so that’s why the National Sleep Foundation advises 60–67 degrees. But that could be too cool, depending on your clothing and blanket preference.

We suggest running an equivalent test over a week, setting your thermostat higher and slowly lowering it to find the ideal setting for your residence. On mild nights, you may learn keeping windows open at night and relying on a ceiling fan is a better option than operating the air conditioning.

More Ways to Use Less Energy This Summer

There are additional ways you can spend less money on utility bills throughout warm weather.

  1. Upgrade to an energy-efficient AC system. Central air conditioners only are effective for about 12–15 years and get less efficient as they age. An upgraded air conditioner can keep your home cooler while keeping electricity bills small.
  2. Book yearly air conditioner tune-ups. Regular air conditioner maintenance keeps your equipment operating properly and may help it run more efficiently. It may also help extend its life cycle, since it helps techs to uncover little troubles before they cause a major meltdown.
  3. Change air filters regularly. Follow manufacturer instructions for switching your air filter. A dirty filter can lead to your system short cycling, or run too frequently, and raise your utility.
  4. Inspect attic insulation levels. Almost 90% of houses in the U.S. don’t have adequate insulation, according to the Insulation Institute. Most southern climates require 13–14” of attic insulation, while northern climates require 16–18”.
  5. Have your ductwork examined. Ductwork that has loosened over time can seep conditioned air into your attic, walls or crawl space. This can create major comfort problems in your house, like hot and cold spots.
  6. Seal openings, doors and windows. Keep warm air in its place by closing openings. You can also caulk or weather strip doors to trap more conditioned air inside.

Save More Energy This Summer with Kohles & Bach Heating & Cooling

If you are looking to use less energy this summer, our Kohles & Bach Heating & Cooling professionals can provide assistance. Give us a call at 515-278-2900 or contact us online for additional information about our energy-saving cooling products.