During the brutal Chicago winter, few things may feel better than heating your home past 70 degrees and striking a fatal blow to the cold indoors. But keeping it toasty in your home can also cause a spike to your heating bill and leave fiscally responsible homeowners steaming mad. You want to make it through the winter while both weathering the cold and balancing your budget. So, where’s the middle ground? What’s the ideal temperature?
Instead of enduring an endless battle of passive aggressive thermostats adjustments inside your home, let’s settle any potential temperature disputes with a few facts. By being more strategic and efficient this winter, you keep yourself comfortable and hold on to more cash in the process.
So what’s the best temperature when your home? 68 degrees. It’s the optimal temperature setting during the winter when you are awake that will allow most people to be comfort while also earning energy efficiency savings. Your pipes won’t freeze. You’ll pay a reasonable heating bill. And no one at home will be able to see their breath indoors when they speak.
Your home doesn’t always need to be the same temperature
Want to reduce your bill even further? Keep it a little colder while you’re away for work or out of the home. It’s a pretty common myth that dropping the temperature inside causes your furnace to work harder to heat the home back to the ideal temperature. It doesn’t Instead, keeping it colder while you’re away stops your furnace from needing to run constantly and heat a space no one is using. So if no people or pets will be disturbed at home, you can drop your temperature by 10 degrees and earn a great deal of savings over the season. According to the Department of Energy, “you can save as much as 10% a year on heating and cooling by simply turning your thermostat back 7°-10°F for 8 hours a day from its normal setting.” Plus, if you have a programmable thermostat, you can strategically heat your home to keep it at the temperature you would like whenever you arrive back at the house.
Even more, you can lower your heating bills by about 10% if you drop your thermostat by 10 degrees at night. Be comfortable and also save some money by wearing your most comfy sweatshirt to bed or even putting on those wool socks you were gifted during the holidays. You know, the ones that you meant to return to the store, but that 30-day return policy was too strict for your schedule. Furthermore, according to Country Living, when you sleep in a colder room, it can actually make you healthier. Going to sleep in a house that’s between 60 to 67 degrees is actually good for you. Moreover, a colder room can actually encourage you to fall asleep faster as well.
Your home is also more efficient when it’s colder. According to the Department of Energy, a lower temperature inside will actually slow the loss of heat. And as we’ve seen before, there are several spots in your home that can let heat escape quickly. But “the longer your house remains at the lower temperature, the more energy you save, because your house has lost less energy than it would have at the higher temperature,” Energy.gov states.
So don’t let your home heated by anger over the thermostat. Be smart while you’re away or asleep and set the temperature at 68 degrees and keep it comfortable instead.