How to Program a Thermostat to Save Money
Smart Home, Smart Thermostat
Written by CW Suter
Homeowners are turning to smart technology with the following goals in mind – to have an energy efficient home and save money on energy bills. Today, the Internet of Things (IoT) allows homeowners to control their home systems from the comfort of their smartphones or tablets. One such system is the smart thermostat.
A recent study carried out by Telus on the benefits of having a smarter home reveals that homeowners can live comfortably, safer, easier and healthier. Smart thermostats are designed to control heating and air conditioning at home. Unlike regular thermostats, WiFi thermostats can learn your preferences.
As such, they can adjust the temperature to suit your needs. Also, they have the capability of displaying energy consumption and allow you to adjust the setting, remotely.
So, can you program a thermostat to save money?
Yes, you can. We’ve put together the following tips to help you accomplish this.
Ideal Weekly Thermostat Schedule During Fall and Winter
ENERGY STAR has determined that the average household spends $2,200 or more annually on energy bills. By properly programming your thermostat during fall and winter, you can save more than $200 a year. Want to save money on your energy bills while ensuring your family is comfortable? You’ve come to the right place. We’ve put together this sample of a weekly thermostat schedule for winter and fall:
15 to 30 minutes before 6 AM, set the temperature in your home to 70 degrees F (or lower, for maximum cost savings). Of course, if your preference is a toastier temperature, set it higher. Since this is the time when family members wake up, you get to ensure that the overall temperature creates a comfortable space.
From 7 AM to 5 PM, during the time that you and your family are not home, set your smart thermostat as follows: 63 to 68 degrees F. By choosing the settings above, you can save more than 10% in terms of energy.
During the waking hours that you and your family are home, set your thermostat to 68 degrees F – or a bit higher, if that is your preference. In this case, we’ll assume that family members will begin to arrive home between 5 PM and 6 PM and bedtime is around 10 PM. This means that you’ll have your thermostat set for 68 degrees from 5 PM to 10 PM
Since Honeywell and Lennox iComfort thermostats utilize geo-fencing technology, you can skip the hard and fast schedule and use your smartphone to tell your thermostat when you are home: this will automatically set the temperature to 68 degrees F when your phone is in close proximity to your thermostat. This temperature is maintained until it is time for bed.
These settings are suitable for weekdays. You can opt to change them depending on your family’s individual schedule and/or preference for weekends.
Ideal Weekly Thermostat Schedule for Summer and Spring
During summer and spring, the US Department of Energy recommends you set your smart thermostat to 78 degrees F. This is ideal if you and your family will be indoors. When you are away from home, set the temperature a few degrees higher. Why? To ensure that when you and your family are away, you’re not cooling an empty home, and when you arrive back home, it won’t be hot and stuffy.
On the days you don’t need cooling, shut off the AC manually. To prevent the AC from turning on when you are away, program the thermostat to be warmer or around 85 degrees F. What you need to keep in mind is that for every degree higher than 78 degrees F in summer, you save 6% to 8% off your energy bill. So, to save more money, make sure you set the temperature slightly higher or choose the best setting during summer and spring.
Vacation Thermostat Setting
Planning on taking a vacation? Do not turn off your heating and cooling system. What you need to do is set the thermostat 55 degrees F in the winter and 90 degrees F in summer. This helps to ensure proper temperature and humidity control.
The most effective way to do this is to use the “hold” or “away” feature. This enables you to set a constant energy-saving temperature and stops the automatic schedule too. On the iComfort Thermostat, it’s a simple, large “Away” button found in the bottom left corner of the screen. Pressing this will pause your regular schedule until you get back home.
While smart thermostats are designed to control your heating and cooling needs, you can save more money by insulating your home. To get the best performance from your Honeywell or Lennox iComfort smart thermostat, install it away from direct sunlight and other sources of heat. Our SuterHeroes are your best source for information on how to install a smart thermostat, and can help you get the most from your system.
During the month of February, 2019, we are offering deep discounts on the purchase and installation of a new smart thermostat. Learn more about this hot deal.