Should You Turn Up the AC When You Leave Home?

How to Come Home to a Cool Home Without the AC Running All Day

Does this sound like you? You put in grueling hours at work on a hot summer day. The last thing you want to come home to is a blast of hot air when you open your door. You want your air conditioner to have cooled your home before you arrive so that you can relax. So before you leave for work, you set the thermostat to the temperature you want to come home to and leave the system running all day.

Cooling an Empty Home Can Lead to Problems with your HVAC System

The only problem with this scenario is that your heating, ventilation and air conditioning system is not designed to run all day when there’s no one home. If it has been designed properly, it should provide years of service with normal use. That doesn’t include cooling an empty home.

You don’t need a more powerful system to cool your home more quickly. In fact, a system that is too powerful will not work efficiently. What will make your system work more efficiently is to keep your ductwork clean and free from leaks.

Running your air conditioning all day while you’re not home can cause your HVAC system to wear out prematurely. It can even damage some of the system’s components. That, in turn, will cause the system to not function well when you are home.

Keeping your AC system on while you’re not home will take money out of your pocket and put it in the hands of your utility company. They might thank you, but you’ll have less pocket change to spend on things you want. Wasting energy and wasting money is not in anyone’s best interest, unless you’re the electric company.

Instead, take some steps to increase the efficiency of your system so it can keep you cool during the summer and warm in the winter. You can start by changing your outdated thermostat to a programmable one.

A Programmable Thermostat Provides Comfort, Efficiency

If you have an old-school thermostat, it probably has only a dial to set the temperature. With these setups, you would have to leave the system running all day if you want to return to a cool home.

With a programmable thermostat, however, you can set the system to kick on just before you arrive home. You won’t have wasted money and energy cooling your home all day, and you won’t have risked ruining your expensive HVAC system with overuse.

Smart Thermostats Give You the Power to Change Settings Remotely

Smart thermostats are programmable thermostats that you can access online with your computer or mobile device. That way, if someone from work asks you to stay to finish a project, you can set your home’s thermostat to turn on a little later than usual. When you go out of town, you can use your mobile device to set your home’s thermostat to turn on just before you arrive.

Regular Maintenance Also Helps Boost HVAC Efficiency

In addition to changing your dated thermostat for a programmable device, you should schedule a regular maintenance checkup with HVAC professionals every year. These expert technicians will inspect and clean all of your system’s components to maintain your HVAC at top efficiency.

If it’s been a while since you have had your system checked and cleaned, or if your system is not working as well as it should, make an appointment with qualified professionals to get your HVAC in tiptop shape to keep you and your family comfortable all year long.