It’s no secret that summers in the RGV are hot, and keeping cool usually means a hefty power bill. If you’ve been thinking about how to lower your bill, switching out your thermostat has probably come up as a solution.
A programmable thermostat makes it easy to save money on your bill, but it isn’t the thermostat itself that causes the savings. It’s what you do with the thermostat that helps with your power bill. In order to know which choice is best for you, you need to know how to save money using one.
You can save as much as 10% off your electric bill by raising the temperature on your A/C 7 to 10 degrees. Even if you don’t like the feel of the house when its warm rather than cool, you can still take advantage of savings by raising the temperature a few degrees when you know you won’t be home.
If you don’t mind adjusting the thermostat yourself each time, a non-programmable thermostat works just as well as a programmable one. The key difference is that a programmable one never forgets to make that adjustment, and will save you money even when you don’t remember to adjust it on your way out the door.
This means that while both can save you money, the programmable thermostat makes it easier to save. It also makes the savings you see on your bill each month more consistent because it never forgets or runs out of time, while you might.
The one drawback to adjusting the A/C so it isn’t cooling your home when no one is there to enjoy it, is that you come back to a warm house. While this may only be for a short time while the A/C brings the house back down to a comfortable temperature, it’s still not the most enjoyable experience.
With a programmable thermostat however, you can program the thermostat to automatically start the cool down process 30 minutes before you get home. This way, you can enjoy the perks of not cooling an empty house, as well as stepping in to a refreshingly cool home at the end of the day.
Smart thermostats can take it a step farther, and allow you to make changes remotely as well. If you get off work early and want the house to be cool when you get home, you can make these changes through a WiFi connection.
This type of thermostat is best if you have a busy family with an inconsistent schedule. If your child is coming home from school early, or someone else will be home for some reason, you can adjust the thermostat without ever having to leave the office.
Which thermostat you choose is ultimately up to you. If you have a great memory and are consistent about adjusting the settings, any type will work, but if you get lost in a busy schedule a programmable thermostat is likely to save you the most money.