Mastering Your Thermostat: A Guide for Kansas City Homeowners

Whether you’re on the side of “always fiddling” with the thermostat or you’re the type who gets frustrated with the fiddlers, you’re going to enjoy this blog because we’re going to put an end to the debate with facts and reasoning once and for all.

April is as good a time as any to share what our local HVAC experts know about mastering your thermostat. In April in Kansas City there are homeowners who still have their furnaces on and there are those who’ve already turned on the air conditioner.

In Kansas City, where the weather can swing from extreme heat to below zero, knowing how to manage your thermostat is the difference between being comfortable and overpaying on utilities. With the right information, you can create a comfortable home environment throughout the year without wasting energy or money.

How to Set Your Thermostat in Summer for Efficiency and Comfort

When summer arrives, it’s tempting to turn your home into a cool retreat. However, the key to managing your cooling needs efficiently is finding balance. The U.S. Department of Energy recommends setting your thermostat at 78°F when you’re home. This temperature strikes a balance between comfort and efficiency, reducing the workload on your air conditioning system and your energy bill.

For times when you’re away from home for several hours or sleeping, raising the thermostat setting by a few degrees can result in significant energy savings. You might not even notice the difference in temperature, but you will see a difference in your energy usage and costs.

How to Set Your Thermostat in Winter to Stay Warm Without Wasting Energy

When the cold sets in, the goal shifts to keeping your home warm without excessive furnace use, which creates wear and tear and drives up your utility bills. The recommended setting for winter months is 68°F (20°C) during the day and times when you are awake and active. This temperature is comfortable for most people (especially if you were raised by parents who told you to put on a sweater if you complained you were cold) and helps to keep energy consumption to a minimum.

Reducing the thermostat by 10 to 15 degrees for the hours you are asleep or out of the house can decrease your heating costs by up to 10% a year. How you ask? The natural drop in body temperature that occurs during sleep allows for comfortable rest at cooler temperatures. In other words, you actually sleep better in a colder temperature.

Year-Round Tips for Managing Your Thermostat

To truly master the art of thermostat management once and for all, consider these ideas:

  • Smart Thermostats: Invest in a smart thermostat that can learn your schedule and adjust temperatures automatically. These devices provide the convenience of remotely managing your home’s temperature via an app and can lead to significant energy savings by adjusting based on actual occupancy and sleeping patterns.
  • Zone Heating and Cooling Systems: If your home is equipped with a zone system, take advantage of it by setting different temperatures for different areas of your home. This lets you avoid the costs of heating or cooling rooms that are not in use.
  • Regular Maintenance: An efficient HVAC system is key to achieving the desired comfort level at minimized energy costs. Ensure your system is serviced regularly by a professional to maintain its efficiency. This includes checking for leaks, changing filters, and ensuring the system is properly functioning. You can put HVAC maintenance appointments on autopilot by signing up for a maintenance agreement.
  • Insulation and Sealing: Enhance your home’s ability to maintain comfortable temperatures by ensuring it is properly insulated and sealed against drafts. Windows, doors and attic spaces are common areas where heat can escape in the winter and enter in the summer, forcing your HVAC system to work harder.
  • Use Fans and Window Treatments: Ceiling fans can make a room feel cooler during the summer months without lowering the thermostat setting. Similarly, using curtains, blinds, or shades to block out sun can keep your home cooler. In winter, opening window treatments during the day can allow sunlight to warm your home naturally.

By setting your thermostat to the recommended temperatures and following these tips, you can enjoy a comfortable home environment throughout the year in Kansas City. Making small adjustments to your habits and taking advantage of technology can lead to a more efficient, comfortable, and cost-effective home. Who knows? It might even end some long-standing arguments.

Contact us if you have any questions, our HVAC technicians are on standby ready to help.