To Turn Off or Leave on Your AC? That Is the Question.

There are plenty of myths about air conditioner usage and how to save money. While the intentions behind them are good, bad advice can cost you money. One such example is the recommendation to leave your air conditioner running all day vs. turning it off when your home is empty. Which is better?

Both and neither.

Modern Climate Control

To ask whether you should turn off your AC completely or leave it running is a question suited to air conditioners that are either on or off—in other words, AC units that have no thermostat. But this is 2017! Even if you haven’t upgraded to a digital thermostat, your AC will have a thermostat, and that completely eliminates the on/off dilemma. Your thermostat automatically shuts off your AC when the desired temperature is reached and turns it back on when the indoor area needs cooling.

Setting Your Thermostat for Optimum Energy Efficiency

Rather than asking if you should turn off your AC or leave it on all day, the better question is “What temperature should I set my thermostat?” Digital thermostats allow multiple temperature settings for different times of day. Manual thermostats rely on your ability to remember to adjust temperature settings based on when your home is occupied or empty.

In any case, here’s what will help you best manage utility costs: set your thermostat to a slightly higher (warmer) indoor temperature during times your home is empty. This strategy allows you to maintain a relatively consistent indoor temperature because you are not letting your home bake all day and then blasting the AC to cool it down when everyone gets home. At the same time, a higher temperature means your AC will not cycle on/off so frequently, saving you money.

If your home’s AC system is not currently controlled by a digital thermostat, contact R & R Heating & Air. We can update your climate control capabilities so that you can enjoy optimal comfort and cost-savings.