The Best Thermostat Setting to Save Energy When You’re Not Home

You have worked hard to save money and energy around your Amarillo home, changing habits and light bulbs. What about saving energy when you are not home? Using the furnace and central air conditioner less when you are out means picking the best thermostat setting for maximum comfort and savings. 

The Best Thermostat Setting to Save Energy When You're Not HomeEmpty Nest

Your household, like most families, clears out of the house for a good part of each day. During that time, are you still running your furnace or central air conditioner? Do you wonder why you are heating or cooling an empty house? Applying the best thermostat setting for an empty home is a sure way to reduce your energy use and save money.

If you have the older electro-mechanical type of thermostat, this means daily adjustments a few times a day:

  • During heating season, turn the thermostat down several degrees when you go out. Bump it up to 68 degrees when you return. You will hardly notice the difference, but the furnace will run less often in those seven to eight hours every day.
  • For cooling, turn the thermostat up a few degrees—the higher the setting, the more you save—when you leave. You save electricity when the A/C is off.


For the eight hours when family members will not notice, pick the best thermostat setting for overnight comfort, lowering it during heating season and raising it during cooling season.

Programmable Thermostats

Avoid fiddling with the thermostat by having programmable thermostats installed. The best thermostat setting for each time period is set once, and then the system locks in your savings. Having several comfort zones, each with its own programmable thermostat, increases your savings.


Programmable thermostats come in three basic configurations:

  • 7-1-1—seven separate schedules, each with four time periods every day (morning, empty house, afternoon, overnight)
  • 5+2—use the same four-period daily schedule with a separate schedule for both weekend days
  • 5-1-1—offer one schedule for weekdays and two separate schedules for Saturday and Sunday

To learn more about the best thermostat setting for your Amarillo home and your family’s lifestyle, contact us at Amarillo Air Conditioning.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Amarillo, Texas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about thermostats and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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