What Temperature Should I Set the Thermostat in My House?

Determining the Correct Temperature Setting for Summer in Sacramento

What temperatures should you keep it in your home during the summer?  That’s what we are going to be talking about on this blog post.

When moving to a new home or just using your central AC for the first time you may want to know the temperature you should keep it at in your home during the summer.  There are a few answers depending on who you ask.  So let’s talk about those differences now.

Energy Star

Energy Star is a voluntary program led by the EPA and Dept. of Energy that helps business and people figure out ways to save money on their electric bills.  Energy Star says you should keep it at 78 in your house.  They also say you should keep the temps at 84 degrees when you’re not at home.

Energy Star rated thermostats already have these predetermined temperatures set in them.  You’re able to adjust those temps whenever and however you choose as the owner of the thermostat.

SMUD and PG&E are our local utility providers.  SMUD follows the US Department of Energy when they suggest setting your thermostats at 78 degrees when you are home and setting it up to 10 degrees higher for those times when you are not at home.

What Could Go Wrong?

What I wouldn’t do is set the temperature all the way down to the lowest setting when you want the air conditioning on.  Several things can go wrong here, and it doesn’t get cooler any faster in the house when you do this.  What can happen is you forget to turn the thermostat back off when your done needing cool air.  This leads to sky-high electric bills and a home that sees extreme temperature changes throughout the day.

So what temperature should I keep it at?  It’s simple: whatever temperature you want it to be at.  Let’s say the temperature on your thermostat says it’s 78 degrees in your home. Are you comfortable?  If not try lowering the temperature one to two degrees and see if that makes a difference.  Still not satisfied?  Set the temperature down even more.  If you find yourself the most comfortable at 74 degrees, then so be it.  You’re the king of your castle and you can set to wherever you feel the most comfortable.

For example, I work in the HVAC industry.  In the summer, I spend long hot days fixing other people’s AC systems.  By the time I get home, all I want is a nice cool place to sit and relax.  I usually want it about 72 degrees in the home.  My co-workers sometimes want it down to 68 degrees!  Other folks who may work inside, in normal environments where temperatures aren’t soaring around 120 degrees are just fine with their home temps at or above 78 degrees.

How the different temps affect your electric bill

Be Aware

A person who keeps their AC at 78 degrees in his or her home will have their AC come on less than a person who desires it to be 68 degrees in their house.  Your AC is the most expensive thing to run in your house, and that’s a pretty big spread too between 68 and 78 inside the home.  Typically, a person who keeps their system at 74 degrees and then starts setting it at 78 degrees can expect to save about 25 to 35 dollars a month on their bill.  Over the length of the entire summer, that money adds up!

Saving Money

Consider buying a thermostat that sets back at predetermined times.  Energy Star says it can save you $180 a year by switching to a setback type thermostat.   This allows you to set your thermostat for times of the day when you are coming and going.  For instance, the Honeywell thermostats we use want to know what time you wake up, what time you go to work, what time you come home, and what time you go to bed.  These four major events in your family’s daily lives can determine what temperature it will be in the house.

At Fox Family, we can easily set a program for it for the weekdays and then set it for the weekends.  Folks who are in their homes for the majority of the day, or don’t have a schedule where they work during the week can set it up for just what time you wake up and what time you go to bed.  Really any combination is available as Honeywell lets you decide on your terms.

A Helping Hand

And if you have one of these programmable thermostats, and you don’t feel comfortable setting a program on the thermostat, call or text us and we’ll come out and show you how to do it.  It really doesn’t matter which brand of thermostat it is either.  We’re familiar with all different types of them, and we just want to make sure you’re comfy in your home.

Summary

I hope this answers your question as to what temperature to set your thermostat in the summer.  These sunny and hot Sacramento summers can really drive you bonkers with the fact that we need to cool ourselves and our homes down.  Set it to whatever you are comfortable at, and that’s the right temperature.  Just remember that as long as your AC is on, your electric usage goes up.  And somebody’s gotta pay for that.

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