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Grand Rapids Air Conditioning - 'Thermostat Wars' Resolved?

Posted by Michael Kamps on Fri, Jul 12, 2013 @ 04:45 AM

'Blessed Are The Peacemakers'. Working towards a solution.

What about Programmable thermostats? (I'm still looking to meet the person whothermostat wars has their programmable thermostat programmed.) Programmable thermostat manufacturers tend to exaggerate the savings you will get (Bet you're surprised).
Apparently studies show most people either don't program the setbacks, or override/defeat them with "Hold" settings. Based on this you will find articles saying they don't save money. Sort of like studies showing smoke detectors don't save many lives because most people don't replace the batteries, so they don't alarm. It just has to be true that if you don't use something it won't help you. So, if you don't intend to use it, don't buy one. I'm guessing people stop using them because they can be annoying and uncomfortable. If you program it to start the setback too early in the evening you will have to get ready for bed in the cold (or hot in the summer). If you program it to set back after your sure you'll be in bed, you must either get under too much cover and be too hot initially, or wake up freezing and cover up. If you have to get up in the night it will be cooooold.

It's something of an over simplification, but how much you save depends mostly on how much setback you use and how long your house stays at the target setback temperature. Thus, one long setback period will save more than two short ones totaling the same amount of setback time. Keep in mind, the worse your insulation, windows and doors are the more you will save, and vice versa. The greater your air leakage is through your windows, doors and insulation the faster you lose heat, and the quicker the temperature will reach the setback temperature. Thus, the more of the setback period it will be at the setback temperature.

Building a new 'Ultra Energy Efficient' home with everything sized, engineered and installed correctly creates TRUE comfort all year around. Just set the thermostat and forget it. However as you will learn through our blog, energy efficient home improvements always add comfort if they are done correctly.

Like we said, With today's high energy costs, more often than not, one person is thinking 'comfort' the other is thinking utility bills. With the right information you can have it both ways and reduce the thermostat wars.

Many of you have heard of programmable thermostats or night setback savings.  A programmable thermostat allows you to set the time of day that your air conditioner will come on or turn off.  For example, it may turn off 30 minutes after you leave for work and come on 30 minutes before you get home. 

Night setback savings refers to setting you thermostat so that your air conditioner will not run at night.  Theoretically this will save you money.  However, more times than not, your air conditioner will actually run longer trying to "catch-up" from the time that is was off.

If you have an energy efficient home, the benefits of a programmable thermostat or night setback are diminished.  Set your thermostat to a comfortable temperature and leave it.  Just think, now you can go on that week vacation and not worry about if your utility bill will drain your bank account. You can now come home to a comfortable house and sleep at night in a nicely conditioned room.

Keep this in mind when the 'hot' weather kicks in when you are running your home air conditioning. So, can anyone relate to this?

Tags: Thermostat, Cooling, Air Leaks, Comfort