Air conditioning is mandatory in Florida during the hot summer months. With rising energy costs, many homeowners are reassessing how they use the A/C, especially when no one is at home. There is an ongoing debate about whether it’s more efficient to keep the A/C running 24/7 at the same temperature, than to set back the A/C or turn it off entirely.
Set back the A/C, or when outside temperatures aren’t too extreme, just turn if off when you’re not at home. This option will save you the most in energy consumption.
Leaving It on All Day
If you leave your A/C set at a comfortable temperature all day, it will cycle on and off to keep that temperature. That means the system is not running at its most efficient. Short-cycling stresses parts, wastes energy, and doesn’t properly dehumidify or filter your indoor air. On top of that, no one is enjoying the benefits of the cooler air.
Setting Back the A/C All Day
If you set back the A/C during the day when no one is home – say 85 degrees instead of your usual 75 – you will save quite a bit of energy and money. This is because rather than short cycling all day, your A/C will run continuously when you get home to return to your comfort level (or before you get home if you use a programmable thermostat). This continuous operation is much more efficient and also will remove more uncomfortable humidity.
So why not just turn off the A/C? Unfortunately, our Tampa area temperatures get so hot and muggy during a summer day that if you turn off the A/C, your home’s indoor temperatures could rise into the 90s or higher. Any A/C will struggle to recover from these extreme indoor temperatures, plus excessive indoor heat can damage home fixtures, food items and occupants’ belongings. It’s not so great for pets and houseplants either.
Program Energy-Saving Temperatures
The best solution is to employ a programmable thermostat so that a higher-than-normal energy-saving temperature is in effect when the house is empty for the day, and it returns to your comfort level shortly before you return home. This will give you summertime energy savings without coming home to a hot and uncomfortable home.
For more information on saving money this summer, please contact us at Senica Air Conditioning, Inc., Inc. We are your home comfort specialists in Tampa, Clearwater and St. Petersburg.
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