We all have that loved one who sets his or her thermostat at 68 degrees in summer and fusses about the cost of the power bill. No one wants to swelter in the summer. But no one wants to pay a $500 electricity bill either. It’s a trade-off.
According to the Department of Energy and just about any other reputable source you can find, the minimum optimal temperature for your air conditioner in the summer is 78 degrees. If you’re gone from your house for more than two hours, the Department of Energy recommends you turn your air conditioner up to 85 degrees–82 degrees when you’re sleeping.
At least for me, these suggestions don’t work. I have Hashimoto’s, and I get incredibly overheated at night. A few years ago, I would have set the thermostat as low as 68 degrees at night and when I came in from the heat outside. Today, my thermostat trends toward 78 degrees with nights and my child’s nap time set at 75 degrees. When I’m gone, I set my Nest thermostat at away and on eco mode at a toasty temperature of 82 degrees. And my electricity bill shows those changes.
So if you can’t bear to set your thermostat on 78 or 82 or 85 degrees right now, at least make a small change and raise the temperature a degree until you find your sweet spot. According to Consumer Reports, you’ll see a 3% savings per degree.
You may also consider buying a Nest learning thermostat, preferably when those go on sale. (Disclosure: That’s an affiliate link by which I’ll earn a small commission if you purchase through it, but I’m going to be reviewing the Nest thermostat soon, and I’ll change the link then to my review.)
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