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Programmable Thermostats – How They Can Work for You

ABC15 welcomes Penguin Air, Plumbing & Electrical General Manager Jay Kline to a new series, Tips of the Toolbox, which airs every Wednesday at 9 a.m. on Sonoran Living. Each week Jay will be discussing tips for you to save energy and money in your home.

Are you constantly setting your thermostat to make your home more comfortable? Maybe warmer in the morning, cooler at night while you sleep?

One of the big mistakes people do regarding using thermostats is that they turn it off or turn it way up during the day. This is bad for the system and it’s hard on your unit energy-wise. If you leave it high during the day and then return at 5 or 6 in the afternoon and crank it down a few degrees, it requires a lot of energy to get it back down.

This is a common dilemma for many people. Especially at night, people have the tendency to keep things a little bit cooler. However, a programmable thermostat can help take the guesswork out of it.

What are the basic types of thermostats?

There are basic non-programmable thermostats, programmable thermostats and touchscreen programmable thermostats (which require power, not batteries). Since most thermostats require batteries, we recommend changing the batteries in your thermostat at least once a year.

So a programmable thermostat will do the work for you?

Yes, you can go in and you can set the whole system up to where it comes on in the morning when you wake up at your desired temperature and desired time. You can set it again when you leave to go to work for another time and temperature, when you return from work and again when you go to bed.

A new thermostat that’s available is the Honeywell Prestige IHQ. It has a ton of nice features, such as different color displays and ability to connect to many accessories. There is a portable comfort control device that will read the temperature from its closest surroundings that you can adjust from anywhere in the house. There are sensors you can put around the house, indoors and out, to tell the temperature there. The accessories are all wireless.

What is the right temperature to set my thermostat?

The biggest thing is, set your house to the temperature at which you’re comfortable. Every house and every thermostat is different. The average for air conditioning is right around the 78º-80º mark. 77º is a little bit cooler.

Will a programmable thermostat reduce the electric bill in a lot of cases?

It will. A big benefit of the programmable thermostat is for people who are on the time of use plans for APS and SRP. You can go through and program your thermostat to be off and on during the on and off peak hours of the utility rates.

Penguin Air, Plumbing & Electrical focuses on customer service. We like to say that we are a “customer service business that does air conditioning.” Penguin Air also offers other services, including plumping, water softeners, RO systems and heating.

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