One of the biggest challenges during winter is trying to keep your household warm and comfortable. Sometimes, it becomes even harder when everyone in the house has their preferred temperature comfort levels.
For this reason, you might find yourself asking a question that many people have struggled with over the years: what temperature should I set my thermostat in winter?
While it might be pretty hard to find an optimal temperature for everyone, it’s possible to find an average that most people will be comfortable with.
Remember, you need a winter thermostat setting that will help keep your entire family warm and comfortable while still saving on energy costs. So, which is this ideal temperature?
Best Temperature to Set Thermostat in Winter Cold
When trying to figure out the best thermostat setting for winter, several factors come into play. For instance, aspects like your home’s size and the number of family members living there must be considered. Also, whether there are people in the house or not should affect your thermostat’s settings.
According to Energy.gov, the ideal indoor temperature setting while awake is 68°F. At this temperature, you’ll be keeping your home warm while still conserving energy. When sleeping, you should set the temperature a bit lower.
You can follow these tips:
- When awake – between 68 °F and 70°F
- While sleeping – around 65°F will do
- When not in the house – 65°F
During winter, you must strike a balance between energy bills and your family’s comfort without one overshadowing the other.
Here are some tips to help keep your house warm the entire season, without digging deeper into your pockets to pay for increased energy bills.
- Pick a Temperature that Favors Everyone
While every family member prefers a different indoor temperature level, you should set your thermostat to a temperature that everyone can tolerate. Discussing this with each family member is crucial to ensure that no one is left out and to help you get the best average.
Generally, around 70°F is the ideal thermostat setting for living spaces. On the other hand, bedrooms should have cooler temperatures, normally around 65°F. Since your body temperature fluctuates during sleep, setting that thermostat at cooler temperatures at night can help improve your sleep.
Also, when there is no one in the house, higher temperatures will only lead to wastage of energy. Therefore, ensure you adjust your home’s heating system to lower temperatures. By doing so, you could be saving up to 20% of your energy bills.
- Install a Programmable Thermostat
For you to keep everyone in the house happy and still make some energy savings, you should keep adjusting your thermostat’s settings throughout the day. For instance, you’ll have to adjust the thermostat settings when you go out for a few hours, when you are back into the house, or when going to sleep. Now, this is too much work!
This is where a programmable thermostat comes in. This type of thermostat helps your HVAC adjust the temperatures during different times of the day automatically, ensuring that you take advantage of energy-saving opportunities. Simply enter the desired temperatures and their adjusting times on the thermostat once, and you are good to go.
The good thing about a programmable thermostat is that you can use it with any HVAC system. Even better, some of these thermostats allow you to access your HVAC system remotely when you want to adjust the temperatures.
- Insulate Your House Properly
Your HVAC efficiency is highly dependent on your home’s insulation. Any effort to reduce your energy bills during winter will be worthless if your doors, windows, and attic have cracks that allow the heated indoor air to escape.
Therefore, make sure you’ve checked the insulation (weatherstripping) around all these areas to ensure that the warm air stays indoors. Poor weatherstripping can increase your energy bills by up to 30%.
If you notice any drafts in your house, insulate them properly with the right materials before the cold season kicks in.
- Maintaining Your HVAC System
Even the best heating system can malfunction if not properly maintained. And, this is not something you want to experience this winter.
Firstly, if you don’t regularly maintain your HVAC system, you can be sure that your energy bills will shoot up. This is due to constant costly repairs, as well as low efficiency, which causes the system to use more power.
Even worse, you might find yourself in the cold, without a functional heating system if you only remember it when temperatures get cold. Therefore, always schedule your HVAC’s maintenance as recommended.
These simple tasks can help a great deal, in keeping your system working:
- Cleaning or replacing your heating system’s air filter every month. This ensures that the unit gets sufficient fresh air.
- Ensure that no obstacles are near the air vents, to allow for the proper flow of warm air inside the house.
- Schedule a yearly preventative HVAC system maintenance just before winter starts. This helps to identify any problems that might cause serious damages and losses during winter.
Also, don’t forget to remove shrubs and debris near your outdoor HVAC unit.
- Use Zoned HVAC Control
A zoned HVAC system is an excellent solution to most of our home’s heating and cooling problems. It is a system that allows your family to enjoy different temperatures in different rooms within the house.
This system comes in handy when answering the question, “what temperature should I set my thermostat in winter?” This is because you can customize different temperature zones based on the preferences of family members.
For instance, those who can’t tolerate the set 70°F living room temperature can enjoy a cooler 65°F temperature in another room.
A zoning system not only offers a better chance for everyone to be comfortable during winter but also helps to reduce energy bills. This is because you don’t have to heat the entire house. You can increase or lower temperature levels in the desired zones.