Experts on energy efficiency say that a programmable thermostat can reduce your annual energy bills by $180. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that these devices can slash your heating and cooling costs by 5 to 20 percent. With the cost of energy increasing, savings are a welcome reward, and the results are completely achievable. Here’s how programmable controls work and why they can put cash back in your pocket.
Ideal Temperature Settings
Adjusting the temperature for prolonged periods saves money by reducing the amount of time that your air conditioner or heater has to run. Set-up and set-back temperatures that are implemented for eight hours during the average work day produce the most savings. In fact, each degree that you raise the temperature in the cooling season produces a savings of 2 percent. Over the course of Montgomery’s long, hot summers, your savings will really grow. You can achieve maximum benefits by programming your thermostat to keep your home at 78 degrees when you’re there and 85 degrees when you leave. Programmable controls have the added benefit of returning your home to a comfortable temperature before you arrive.
Efficient System Controls
Technological advances have increased the savings that are possible with programmable controls. For example, Carrier’s Infinity® controls have adaptable settings that tell your air conditioner and fan how much power is required. Instead of operating at full capacity, your system may run at 40 percent capacity normally and only use full power at certain times. Intelligent Greenspeed™ heat pumps that are paired with Infinity® controls are 69 percent more efficient than standard units.
In the winter, things are a little bit different. Since our climate is ideal for heat pumps, many homeowners have been instructed not to use programmable settings in the winter. The reason that programmable controls and heat pumps don’t get along is the electric resistance heat strip. This auxiliary heat source demands a great deal of energy and is required when temperatures drop significantly. For this reason, a maximum setback of 2 degrees is ideal. However, new technologies and specially designed controls allow the system to better manage energy consumption and reduce the amount of time that auxiliary heat is required.
Today’s technology gives homeowners many ways to save. If you’re interested in lowering your energy bills, call Air Conditioning by Luquire. We can select a programmable thermostat, install it in your home and put you on the road to savings.