Programmable Thermostat = Money in Your Wallet?

Programmable Thermostat = Money in Your Wallet?

Rheem Thermostat

When it comes to money, every little bit saved helps, right? So when you see that Fountain Hills offers a programmable thermostat for your home with the enticing claim of saving you energy and money, of course you’d be interested in learning more about them.

What is a Programmable Thermostat?

A programmable thermostat offers the ability to set individual settings so you can customize the temperature depending on your comfort needs and lifestyle. You can also set the temperature to change during the times you are not home (meaning why pay to keep the house at a cool 68 degrees when no one is home to enjoy it?).

The thermostat is generally easy to use with simple menus to help you choose the settings you need, including up to seven different temperature conditions—not home during the middle of the day? No problem! Just turning the thermostat down one degree (Fahrenheit) for eight hours a day will save you 1 percent of energy, just by that small step. Going on vacation for a week? You got it!

A 2007 study showed that when an Energy Star-certified programmable thermostat was used with a new heating system, the household saved an average of 6.2 percent in annual natural gas consumption. In households who installed a programmable thermostat with their older heating system saved approximately 6.8 percent.

How do they save you money?

Now just because you’ve had a programmable thermostat installed in your home doesn’t mean it will automatically save you money. Just like your traditional thermostat, it all depends on how you set the controls and how you handle it. Yes…you.

The website Get Rich Slowly recommends these steps to help you be more conscious with your programmable thermostat:

  • During the winter, set your thermostat for 68 degrees Fahrenheit while you’re awake and home, but set it lower while you sleep (which can help you sleep better—bonus!) or away.
  • During the summer, set your thermostat at 78 degrees Fahrenheit while you’re home, but set it higher while you’re away.

You can schedule your thermostat to kick on an hour before you wake or come home, this way your home is more comfortable.

The moral: You have to be conscious of your home’s temperature and energy usage and be proactive when using your thermostat.

Of course saving money is bigger than just using one tool. Other ways you can save on your energy usage is listed in our blog How to Save on HVAC Costs.