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Set Your Thermostat to This Temperature When Out of Town for the Holidays

When preparing to leave your home for the holiday season, one important consideration is setting your thermostat to the appropriate temperature. Choosing the right temperature can prevent energy wastage, ensure the safety and maintenance of your home, and minimize costs. If you’re setting out in winter, the thermostat should be set low enough to conserve energy but high enough to prevent pipes from freezing. On the other hand, setting your thermostat to a higher temperature during summer can help manage humidity levels and reduce the energy spent on cooling.

It’s essential not only to adjust the thermostat but also to use the right settings. Modern thermostats have “vacation” or “hold” modes specifically designed for when you’re away for an extended period. These settings help maintain a constant temperature and provide peace of mind that your home is protected against extreme temperatures without incurring high energy bills. By selecting the correct temperature and utilizing your thermostat’s features, your home will remain safe and efficient while you enjoy your vacation.

Key Takeaways

  • Setting your thermostat properly before leaving town conserves energy and protects your home.
  • Utilize ‘vacation’ or ‘permanent hold’ options on your thermostat for maintaining temperature efficiently.
  • Ensuring your home’s pipes are safe from freezing in winter and managing humidity in summer is crucial.

Optimal Thermostat Settings for Energy Savings

When out of town for the holidays, setting your thermostat properly can lead to substantial energy savings without compromising the safety and maintenance of your home.

General Recommendations

Your Thermostat Settings:

  • When Home: Aim for 68°F (20°C) during waking hours.
  • When Asleep or Out: Lower settings by 7-10°F (4-5°C) from your comfort setting is recommended for periods of sleep or when you’re away, potentially saving you up to 10% a year on heating and cooling.

Remember, each degree of adjustment equates to added energy savings, especially over the holiday period when you may be away for extended times.

Factors Influencing Optimal Settings

  • Insulation Quality: Homes with better insulation retain heat more effectively, allowing you to set the thermostat lower without feeling the chill.
  • Type of HVAC System: Some systems like heat pumps are designed to maintain a more constant temperature and may require different settings for efficiency.
  • Household Preferences: Consider health and comfort levels for all residents. Some may require a slightly warmer temperature, even when away.
  • External Weather Conditions: On extremely cold days the setting should ensure pipes do not freeze. Generally, no lower than 55°F (13°C) is advisable.

Tailor these settings to your specific situation for the best energy savings while also ensuring your home is protected during the holidays.

Preparing Your Home for the Temperature Adjustment

Adjusting your thermostat for an extended absence requires careful preparation to ensure energy efficiency and prevent potential issues such as frozen pipes.

Insulation and Draft Checks

Before you leave, check your home’s insulation. Look for any areas where heat may be escaping, like around doors, windows, and attic spaces. Seal any drafts you find using weather-stripping, foam tape, or window insulation film.

  • Doors and Windows: Apply weather-stripping around frames.
  • Attic Spaces: Ensure insulation is up to standard; replace if necessary.

Using Timers and Smart Devices

Leverage technology to maintain your home’s temperature effectively while you’re away.

  • Programmable Thermostat: Set it to keep the house at 50°F to 60°F to prevent pipes from freezing and reduce heating costs.
  • Smart Thermostats: These can be adjusted remotely via a mobile app, giving you flexibility and control.

Ensure all devices are in working order before departure, with fresh batteries in thermostats if they are not hardwired.

Safety and Maintenance Considerations

When setting your thermostat for an extended period away from home, such as a vacation, it’s imperative to consider aspects that ensure your home’s safety and maintenance. The goal is to prevent damage and maintain a healthy environment inside your property.

Preventing Frozen Pipes

To avoid the costly and damaging consequence of frozen pipes, set your thermostat no lower than 60°F when you are out of town during the winter. This temperature is generally considered safe for keeping the water in your pipes from freezing.

Maintaining Indoor Air Quality

To maintain indoor air quality, it’s essential to keep your HVAC system running on a schedule that balances energy efficiency with air circulation. For example, during the summer, you might opt to set your thermostat to around 78°F to reduce the workload on your air conditioner while ensuring sufficient air flow to deter stagnation and humidity build-up.

Schedule a HVAC repair anywhere in the Minneapolis or St. Paul area today by calling (651) 294-7798 or by requesting an estimate online.


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