Best Temperature for Your AC in the Summer

When the scorching summer heat arrives, everyone runs to the nearest thermostat to get the cold air flowing. But the right AC setting isn’t just about keeping comfortable. It’s also about energy efficiency and decreasing your utility bills. So, what’s the magic temp? The answer is based on your unique needs and the time of day. Explore the optimal air conditioning thermostat settings when you’re at home, away as well as when you are sleeping.

The Best AC Temperature When You’re at Home

The recommended daytime, at-home temperature for a residence's air conditioner is 78 degrees. This temperature setting may seem surprisingly high, but the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) claims it balances comfort and energy efficiency. Here are a few tips to help keep your home nice and cool at 78 degrees:

  • Use fans: Whether you're using a ceiling fan or a desk fan, circulating air makes the room feel about 4 degrees cooler. Plus, fans cost a surprisingly small amount of money to use compared to your air conditioner.
  • Dress lightly: What you are wearing greatly affects your comfort level. Wearing light-colored, loose-fitting clothes made of breathable fabrics will help you keep cool in the summer.
  • Block out the sun: Sunlight streaming through the windows can easily heat a room tremendously. To prevent your home from becoming a greenhouse, draw the curtains or blinds to block out the sun, particularly during the peak afternoon hours.
  • Stay hydrated: How much water you drink has a significant part in controlling your body temperature. Making sure you keep yourself hydrated enhances your body’s natural cooling processes.
  • Cook smart: Cooking produces a surprising amount of heat, forcing your air conditioner to work harder, so don't use the oven or stove during the hottest part of the afternoon. Instead, use the microwave, prepare cold meals on hot days or grill outdoors until the weather gets cooler.

The Best AC Temperature While You’re Away

The DOE proposes setting the temperature back 7 to 10 degrees when you’re not going to be home for eight hours, a strategy experts say can save up to 10 percent on your cooling bills. Setting up a programmable thermostat is the quickest way to save without sacrificing comfort.

This improvement allows you to automatically change the temperature at different times of the day or week depending on your schedule, lowering your energy bills without sacrificing comfort. The trick is to use your programmable thermostat correctly. Here are some guidelines for making sure you're using its full power:

  • Set it and forget it: Schedule your thermostat to automatically set the temperature back about a half hour before you leave for work or school in the morning. Then, program the schedule so a comfortable temperature resumes when you walk in the door in the evening.
  • Use the vacation setting: If you’re not going to be home for a long time, use the “vacation” or “permanent” hold to keep the “away” temperature for days at a time. This prevents extreme heat and humidity buildup without throwing away energy to run your air conditioner in an empty house.
  • Make gradual adjustments: Your air conditioner works the best at steady speeds. Plus, a big 10-degree drop will not cool your home more quickly. If you must, lower the temperature by a single degree and start up a fan or remove a layer of clothing to help you feel more comfortable.
  • Leverage smart capabilities: If you choose a smart thermostat, take advantage of its programming capability and advanced features. Some designs can learn from your behaviors and change the temperature accordingly or be operated remotely for outstanding comfort and convenience.

The Best AC Temperature When You’re Sleeping

When it’s time to head off to bed, the DOE suggests setting the temperature four degrees higher than your typical setting. However, lots of people find it tough to sleep in a hot and stuffy room. This makes getting the right sleep temperature a real challenge. Thankfully, you can try several techniques to beat the heat while you are trying to sleep:

  • Sleep in lightweight pajamas and breathable bed sheets: Just like your daytime attire, your choice of sleepwear impacts how hot or cold you feel. Your bed sheets also can be a factor in your comfort level. In both cases, light and breathable cotton is the best choice.
  • Run a fan: As it does during the day, a fan can generate a cool breeze in your bedroom at night, making sleep more comfortable.
  • Open a window: If it cools off at night, make the most of this by sleeping with the windows open.
  • Take a warm shower before bed: It may sound counterintuitive, but a warm shower really cools you down better than a cold shower. It does this by elevating your blood circulation, bringing heat to the surface of your skin, where it radiates away faster.

Schedule AC Services this Summer in Rochester

Finding a compromise between your home’s comfort and energy efficiency is sometimes difficult. Why spend all summer searching for the right AC temperatures when Strogen's Service Experts can help you make the most of your home cooling technology? Our trustworthy, cost-effective AC services in Rochester are backed by a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee, so you can choose us with complete confidence. Call 603-923-4570 today to schedule the top-notch services you need with Strogen's Service Experts.

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