Your AC is working hard to keep you cool. You may notice your electric bill going up due to the added stress on your AC unit. AC can often make up 27% of home energy expenditures in hotter regions. With these rising energy costs, we’re all looking for ways to save energy and, as a result, money. That might leave you questioning whether you should leave your AC on when you’re away from home. Odds are you’ve heard various takes on this question. Here are the facts of what every homeowner should do with their AC when away from home.
Does Turning Your AC Off When Not at Home Save Money?
The short answer to this question is: yes… sort of. It is a myth that your AC unit will have to “work harder” to cool down your home after turning it off. The question of whether you should turn your AC off completely, though, depends on how long you’ll be gone. For instance, if you are going on a vacation for several days, you can turn the unit off to save energy and money. However, if you are leaving during the day for work, it may be more energy efficient to simply adjust your thermostat’s temperature while you are gone. This quick adjustment will keep your house cool enough to avoid damage while ensuring your home returns to an optimal temperature when you are back.
How Bad Is It? Should You Turn Off Your AC When You’re Away?
The answer to this question is, once again, not entirely black-and-white. If you live in an area (like Texas) prone to very high summer temperatures, then not having AC for extended periods in your home can lead to issues. The excessive heat and humidity from lack of AC can cause issues with your home’s furniture, structure, and especially drywall.
What’s the Best Option?
Many HVAC professionals agree that the best option here is to leave your AC on while adjusting your thermostat at a higher temperature when away. This keeps your home happy and results in less time for you to cool down when back in your home. A great starting point is to set your thermostat 5-10 degrees higher than you normally set it when away from home. Some other tips to save on your energy bill while keeping your house cool include:
- Install a smart thermostat to schedule AC temperatures
- Close your curtains when away from home
- Keep your AC set as recommended by the US Department of Energy
- Ensure your house is appropriately insulated
Or, check out these tips to see how you can stay cool even without AC!
Do you need to cool your house down this summer? Or are you interested in saving energy and money by having a smart thermostat or updated AC unit installed? Call Norman Aire today to see how we can help you with all your HVAC needs!