As you try to save energy in your Northbrook, IL, home, you want to be sure that you are using your thermostat wisely. While there are recommended guidelines that are considered to increase energy efficiency, there are a variety of factors that play into how effectively these recommendations work in each home. Just because one temperature is most efficient doesn’t mean that it is also the most comfortable. Fortunately, there are other ways to save energy this fall without setting your thermostat lower than you’d like.
It is recommended that you set your thermostat to 68 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter for the periods when you are awake. This setting is expected to realize the most energy savings when used for a period of eight or more hours. It is thought to be the lowest that is comfortable for most persons while still being low enough to save on energy bills. However, this temperature might not work for everyone. Some may be able to tolerate a degree or two colder and still be comfortable, while some may find that number just a little too frigid, especially during the coldest Illinois months.
As Low as Comfortable
Since there are a lot of factors involved in the comfort of your home, the best setting will depend on the occupants of the home. The closer your thermostat is set to the outdoor temperature, the lower your utility bills will be. This is easier said than done, of course, when it is freezing outside, but you should aim to set your thermostat as low as is comfortable. You may consider slowly working your way down and getting acclimated to slightly lower temperatures over time.
Time of Day and Activity Factors
Different settings should be used based on whether you are at home, away, or asleep. Another setting is also used so you can wake up to more comfortable temperatures in the morning. A programmable thermostat allows you to set all these various temperatures in advance. There are thermostats that can also allow you to set one schedule for the week, and another for the weekend. These thermostats make it easy to adjust the temperature when necessary so you don’t waste extra energy heating an empty home. Programming your thermostat according to daily schedules or activities is an effective way to manage energy consumption.
The humidity levels in your home should be between 30 to 50 percent. Your indoor air tends to be much drier because of the cold air in the winter. Dry air doesn’t hold heat, which will make your home feel colder, and create uncomfortable conditions such as dry skin and static shock. If you live in a cold climate during the winter, you may want to consider a humidifier for your home. It will keep the family more comfortable with the added moisture, and it will also make your home feel warmer during the winter.
It is possible to be comfortable in your home and save on your utility bills this winter. Consider buying a space heater for rooms that are more often occupied. You can get away with setting the thermostat a little lower if you put a space heater in your bedroom or home office. If you have ceiling fans, adjust them to spin in a clockwise direction to help circulate the warm air. Also consider weatherizing your doors and windows as well as adding insulation in your attic so you don’t waste heat energy. These measures will help to keep heat in the home so that you are not tempted to increase the temperature.
For more information about using your heating system efficiently this winter, call Roberts Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. at 847-272-5836 to speak with one of our experts.
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