SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA – Residential or commercial clients who are trying to save money on heating and cooling costs should consider including a programmable thermostat in their plan, according to Gabriel Carini, owner of a San Diego heating and air conditioning service and installation company.
The thermostat saves energy by letting users control when, for how long and at what temperature their heating or cooling system is on, says Carini, San Diego heater repair expert. If a business is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., they can schedule the HVAC system to be “set back” to a higher or lower temperature, depending on the season, for the times when no one is at the office. Homeowners can schedule a set-back for while they are gone to work or school and while they are sleeping.
Consumers can save an average of 3 percent off their energy bill for every degree the thermostat is set back, according to Energy Star, a government-backed program helping protect the environment through superior energy efficiency. They provide a savings calculator on their website to better estimate how much can be saved by using a programmable thermostat.
Many programmable thermostats have the option of setting more than one schedule per day, one for daytime and one for nighttime. Depending on the model, there are also modes that return the system to a more comfortable temperature half an hour to an hour before the user would be waking up in the morning, returning home during the day or coming into the office.
“Individual comfort level, the home’s insulation, the type of heating and cooling system and the climate are some of the factors that determine the effectiveness and actual amount saved,” explains Carini, who services and installs furnaces and whole house air conditioning in San Diego.
He cautions that a programmable thermostat does not offer benefits for every situation. They are ideal for individuals and families who are away from home during set periods of time throughout the week, such as away at work or school, or businesses that only need their HVAC system for a portion of the day. Individuals, families or businesses who are at home or work all day and want a constant temperature throughout the day will not save as much energy using a programmable thermostat.
A Carini Heating, Air and Plumbing professional can ensure proper installation and operation of the heating and cooling system. Because there are so many thermostat options, and not all of them are compatible with certain heating and cooling systems, Carini recommends talking to one of his HVAC contractors before selecting the unit.
“If you invest in one, but the system is installed improperly or programmed incorrectly, you either won’t use it or get the most benefit possible from it,” he says.
Thermostats should be located away from any sources of cold or heat in order to work properly and efficiently. The best location is on an interior wall, away from sources of heat or drafts, such as fans, doorways, windows, skylights, direct sunlight, bright lamps or vents from the HVAC. San Diego, CA homes and businesses with multiple heating and cooling zones need a programmed thermostat for each zone to maximize comfort, convenience and energy savings throughout the space.
“If you’re replacing an HVAC system, replacing an older manual thermostat is a good upgrade because they are more accurate and will improve the efficiency of your new furnace or whole house air conditioner,” San Diego business owner Carini says.