Confused on How to Set Your Programmable Thermostat?

Closeup of hand pressing button on digital thermostat

With all the options available for setting your programmable thermostat, it’s easy to get confused. Of course, this defeats the purpose of a programmable thermostat––it’s designed for you to “set it and forget it,” making your life easier here in Annapolis.

It’s worth taking the minute or two it takes to read this to clear up anything confusing you about the process. And you can always call our knowledgeable and friendly professionals here at Bay Breeze Heating & Cooling to help you with anything you don’t understand.

Traditionally, “set it and forget it” means setting your thermostat at one temperature and just plain leaving it there. Forget having to worry about it or change it.

The philosophy behind that mindset to constantly change the temperature to attempt to save money on energy actually didn’t save anything. Studies have since shown that behavior isn’t accurate at all, and changing the temperature in different situations does save you money, especially here in Maryland.

In fact, according to US Department of Energy (DOE), you can save as much as 10 percent a year on your heating and cooling by turning back your thermostat 7 to 10 degrees a day for eight hours.

With a programmable thermostat, “set it and forget it” takes on a new meaning. You can program your thermostat once with the temperature changes specified and then forget about it.

How to Set Your Thermostat

Depending on the type of programmable thermostat you have, there will be somewhat different options. That said, most programmables work on the same time options: Wake Time, Sleep Time, Leave Time, and Return Time.

Be sure when programming your thermostat you enter realistic times accurately reflecting you and your family’s schedule. You want to get the most from your thermostat.

A few things to keep in mind prior to setting your schedule:

  • Install name-brand batteries, and change them annually. Cheaper batteries don’t have as long of a charge in them. You want your thermostat working when you need it.
  • Feel free to temporarily override your set schedule and adjust the temperature when needed. This override automatically cancels and resumes to normal programming. Don’t select Hold/Permanent/Vacation (depending on your thermostat, and unless you’re actually going on vacation), and just choose Temporary.
  • Avoid cranking temperatures to extremes with the idea of heating up or cooling down your home quicker. The system doesn’t work that way, and it just uses up your energy faster, costing you more money. Your equipment will heat or cool your home just as fast setting it at the accurate temperatures.

Here’s how to generally set your thermostat:

  1. Be sure to follow your manufacturer’s instructions.
  2. Choose either Heating or Cooling for whichever you’ll be doing, obviously dependent on the season.
  3. Set the temperature for weekdays by setting the switch to Heating or Cooling and selecting the weekday program. Start with Monday or just Weekday, depending on your model, and select the time and temperature for the day(s) you’ll be scheduling. Then continue with the remaining times for that day(s) with temperatures.
  4. For example, you may want your air conditioner to cool your home to degrees Fahrenheit at 7:00 a.m., so when your alarm goes off at 7:30 a.m., your home is cool for you. Then when you go to bed at 11:00 p.m., you would want to set your air conditioning to 76 degrees Fahrenheit at 11:30 p.m. so you’re saving energy while you sleep.
  5. The same procedure goes for the Heating setting. Many thermostat models allow you to set times and temperatures for four times during weekends. So if you work or leave during the day, you can change the temperature to reflect that and save even more money.
  6. Set the temperature for weekends in the same manner. However, since most people tend to be home more during the weekend, you may only want to set the temperature for your wake-up and bed times. You can use a temporary override to adjust the temperature if you decide to leave the house during the day at all.

Contact Bay Breeze Heating & Cooling for All Your Thermostat Needs

A programmable thermostat is really designed for you to “set it and leave it.” Taking a few minutes when your thermostat’s installed to correctly set your schedule will make your Annapolis, MD, home comfortable and allow you to save money at the same time. Call our Bay Breeze Heating & Cooling team at 410-798-6933 or request service online if it’s time for a new thermostat or if you need help programming yours. We’re here to help.

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