How to Set Thermostat When on Vacation

How to Set Thermostat When on Vacation

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Learn how to set your thermostat when on vacation to optimize energy savings and keep your household protected. After all, vacations are a time to have fun and relax, not to worry about energy waste back at home! In this blog, we’ll cover the best thermostat settings for winter, the best thermostat settings for summer, and how to set the thermostat for pets. 

How to Set Thermostat When on Vacation in the Winter

If you plan to leave your home during the winter months, set back your thermostat to a temperature between 50 to 55 degrees. This setting allows you to conserve energy and keep energy bills low when you’re not at home to enjoy the warmth your heating system produces. 

Whenever you are able to set back your thermostat 7 to 10 degrees colder in the winter for periods of eight or more hours, energy savings increase by up to 10 percent. Over a long vacation period, this setting helps cut the cost of utility expenses on your next bill.

If you leave pets behind in the home while on vacation, your home needs to stay a little warmer for their safety and comfort. Do not set your thermostat any lower than 60 degrees if pets remain indoors. 

If you have older animals with joint issues, consider a higher thermostat setpoint as exposure to a constantly cold environment worsens joint pain. 

Similarly, pets who are ill or in poor health often need warmer temperatures to stay comfortable. Check with your vet before you leave town for input on what thermostat setting keeps your breed of pet comfortable.

How to Set Thermostat When on Vacation in the Summer

For summertime trips where your home remains empty in your absence, set the thermostat to between 85 and 90 degrees to maximize energy savings. This prolonged temperature setback helps you reduce your energy bills by up to 10 percent while you are away. 

Do not raise the temperature any higher, as you do not want excess humidity to build in your home. This high setpoint ensures the air conditioning system has periodic cycles to dehumidify the indoor air.

When you leave your pets inside the home while you vacation, you need to keep the home cooler for their comfort and safety. Set the thermostat between 80 and 82 degrees, and leave plenty of fresh water for your pets.

How to Set Thermostat When on Vacation – On or Off?

When we talk about how to set a thermostat when on vacation, many homeowners wonder why not turn off the system completely while gone? Well, this is not advised for a number of reasons:

  1. When you return, your HVAC system works harder to restore comfortable temperatures when temperature differentials are greater than the recommended setpoints above. Plus, it takes longer, which isn’t the most comfortable thing to deal with when you return home from a long flight or drive.
  2. You don’t want to turn off your heating system over winter vacation due to the risk of frozen pipes. We do occasionally hit temperatures at or below freezing in the Atlanta area. If your heating system is off, that protection for your pipes is gone.
  3. In the summer, you don’t want to completely turn off the air conditioner because then there is no humidity control from your home. In addition to cooling, your AC system also works to dehumidify your indoor air.

    High humidity levels over long periods of time have the potential to cause damage to your home’s contents and finishes. Paint and wallpaper peel, wood warps, mold and mildew start to grow – you do not want these problems when you return from your trip.

For Thermostat Evaluations and Recommendations, Contact Estes Services

Know how to set thermostat when on vacation for peace of mind while you’re away. If it’s time for a thermostat upgrade, give Estes Services a call. We set you up with a new thermostat that gives you the power to manage temperatures at home, no matter where you are!