The hot summer months can wreak havoc on your electric bill. So how low should you turn your thermostat during this time of year? To stay comfortable and save money this summer, the U.S. Department of Energy recommends setting your thermostat to 78 degrees F when you are home. When you set your air conditioner to that temperature, you will stay cool and avoid an unusually high electricity bill.
Consider using a programmable thermostat. The device lets you adjust the times you turn on the air-conditioning according to a pre-set schedule. Programmable thermostats can store and repeat multiple daily settings that you can manually override without impacting the rest of the daily or weekly program.
How Much You Could Save
You can save as much as 10% a year on heating and cooling by simply turning your thermostat back 7°-10°F for 8 hours a day from its normal setting, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. The percentage of savings from setback is greater for buildings in milder climates than for those in more severe climates.
In the summer, the department says, you should keep your house warmer than normal when you are away, and sett the thermostat to 78°F only when you are at home and need cooling. Set your thermostat at as high a temperature as comfortably possible. Since it is always very humid in New Orleans, make sure to some sort of add humidity control, if needed. Keep in mind the smaller the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, the lower your overall cooling bill will be.