“What temperature should I set my thermostat to for the winter?”
Homeowners across the country ponder this question each year when temperatures start dropping. Answering the question, however, is not as simple as citing one specific temperature, especially as financial and energy usage concerns differ from one family and house to the next.
We do have general recommendations for winter thermostat settings:
- If someone is at home in the daytime, 72° F (22° C) is a good start, but aim for 68° F (20° C).
- If everyone is away from home in the daytime, or you’re asleep at night, we feel 66° F (19° C) to 62° F (17° C) is best.
But instead of focusing a perfect number, you will benefit from establishing an energy-efficient winter heating strategy that will keep your home warm and your thermostat settings reasonable so you won’t face large energy bills. Here are a few tips!
Ease into Winter
Every home has its temperature preference, but setting the thermostat to that temperature and never changing it isn’t helpful to your energy bills.
- Set your thermostats at that desired high temperature.
- Once you and your family acclimate to the colder weather, lower the temperature in the home by one degree each week.
- This one-degree reduction – maintained for even eight hours – can reduce the home’s energy bill by 1 percent, according to Energy.gov.
- Lowering the temperature further and preserving these lower temperatures for longer periods of time increases those savings, and you’ll probably never notice the difference of such a slow, gradual change.
Seek Other Temperature-Control Resources
Since you still want to reduce your winter energy expenses without feeling the cold, it pays to be creative.
- Close doors and vents to unused rooms makes it easier for the home’s furnace to deliver the desired temperature to occupied living spaces.
- Have the furnace inspected
- Seal cracks around the windows or door jambs.
- Bundle up. Dressing warmly, even inside the home, will make your family less reliant on the furnace, allowing you to turn down the thermostat another degree.