As the temperatures continually rise during summer, so does the need for a functional air conditioner. Everyone is using their thermostats trying to find a temperature that keeps their homes or offices most comfortable.
But what air conditioner temperature would be ideal? At what temperature should you set your thermostat?
Well, these are common questions that usually don’t have a definitive answer. While the US Department of Energy puts the best summer AC temperature settings at 78° F, this will certainly vary based on several factors. For instance, what are you looking to achieve – the most comfortable indoor temperature, reduced energy bills, or a balance of the two?
In this article, we will take a look at what an ideal summer AC setting would be, considering the various factors that affect it.
What’s a Good Temperature for AC?
The first thing that really matters in deciding what temperature to set your air conditioner to is your comfort.
At what temperature levels do you feel most comfortable? And if you have a family, does each member have a different temperature preference?
Remember, different people will have different preferences when it comes to indoor temperature settings during summer.
Also, as mentioned earlier, the cost that your AC adds to your energy bill matters. While you might want to set your AC at an even lower temperature, you might want to consider its cost implications. The lower the temperature that your thermostat reads, the more energy your AC consumes.
So, how much are you willing to pay, in terms of energy bills, to achieve that optimal temperature? Balancing these two crucial factors is a good way to determine the best air conditioner temperature in your house. A good temperature is one that considers both your comfort and budget.
Other Factors Affecting Your AC Temperature Settings
Various other factors come into play when deciding what temperature to input on your thermostat. For instance, what’s your location?
While summers in Colorado average 65.2° F, Texas is way hotter, averaging 81.1° F. The difference in the outdoor temperatures will greatly influence the temperature levels you set inside your house.
The number of people in your house is also a major factor in determining the ideal temperature. As we said, different people will prefer different temperature levels. And for this reason, it’s wise to consider what every family member likes and see if you can reach an average temperature that favors most people.
Additionally, your physical activities while indoors, the number and size of your windows, as well as exterior conditions like humidity, direct sunlight, etc., also have a role to play.
Therefore, the answer to this question is not a straightforward one, and now you understand why. However, extensive research from the US Department of Energy has resulted in some recommendations. These aim at helping you achieve a comfortable indoor environment while still saving on energy costs.
Let’s see what these recommendations are:
The Ideal AC Setting While Indoors
Are you wondering what the best thermostat setting while indoors is? Well, this should be around 78° F. According to the Department of Energy, this is the average temperature for a comfortable indoor environment that also helps you save on electricity bills.
Unless any of the other factors mentioned above necessitates a lower AC setting, you are better off maintaining the 78° F. But, if you are not comfortable, you can always try a lower temperature. As we said, this isn’t a universal standard.
Best AC Temperature While Sleeping
While 78° F is the ideal temperature when you are home, it’s only ideal when you are awake.
If you are sleeping, you need a different AC setting to ensure you have a peaceful sleep.
Temperatures that are too cold or too hot may hinder your ability to have a restful night. For this reason, experts recommend that you set your AC temperatures between 60° F and 72° F. This should be within that range no matter the season or temperatures outside.
Also, ensure to adjust these settings a few minutes before heading to sleep. This way, the temperatures will have adjusted by the time you are tucking yourself into your bed.
Note: Your kids’ bedrooms might require a slightly higher temperature to guarantee better sleep.
Best AC Temperature Settings While Away
When you are not indoors, it means that no one will be enjoying the cool breeze from your AC. And for this reason, it makes more sense not to cool the house the same way you do while you’re indoors.
Energy.gov recommends that you set the temperatures a bit higher – between 7° and 10° more than your normal AC temperature. This should be around 85° to 88° Fahrenheit.
Increasing your indoor temperatures by this margin is enough to save you up to 10% of your cooling costs, which is a good move. And, don’t worry about having to cool down the temperatures when you return home.
The truth is that higher indoor temperatures help to slow the amount of heat entering your house. This means that even when you are back, your AC doesn’t have to overwork to cool the place down.
What is the Coldest Temperature for an Air Conditioner?
Air conditioners are designed to bring down the temperatures in our houses, offices, and even our vehicles, during the hot summer days. But have you ever thought about how low the AC temperature can go? What is the lowest temperature setting that you can input on your thermostat?
Well, I’m sure most of us have not thought of that yet. But, you certainly should know!
Typically, an air conditioner also has its limits. And, this falls around 60° F. Some AC manufacturing companies will go a bit lower than this, although you wonder if someone would really cool their space to anything lower than 60°F.
Usually, the AC cools your indoor space up to 20°F lower than the outdoor temperatures, but most people never hit that maximum.