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Why Not Set My Thermostat as High as I Can?

During the colder months of the year, it can be tempting to turn your thermostat all the way up. Unfortunately, heating your home costs money, and turning up the thermostat usually means an increase in your monthly utility bills.

Think of your thermostat as similar to your car’s speedometer. Your car can go 120-140 mph according to the speedometer. But you shouldn’t go that fast under almost any circumstances for safety (and legal) reasons. Your thermostat can go up to 90°F, but you shouldn’t push it that far for monetary reasons. Not only will it drain power and cause a huge jump in your bills, but it will force your heater to work harder and wear down much faster.

The EPA estimates that each degree you set back your thermostat for an 8-hour period will save you 1% on your annual energy bill. That works the opposite way as well. So if you have your thermostat set normally to 75°F (which is still a bit high for regular comfort), then going up to 90°F can mean an increase in 15% on your heating bills!

Besides… do you really want the heat up that high indoors? The highest setting on your thermostat will rapidly make your home stuffy and uncomfortable, and you’ll have to lower it again. Constantly shifting the temperature puts additional wear on your heater.

The EPA recommends that during winter you keep your thermostat at 68°F while you’re awake and turning it down even colder at night. Compared to putting your heater at its highest setting, this is an annual savings of 23%-32%.

You will need repairs on your heater eventually, no matter how disciplined you are at keeping your thermostat set to energy-conserving levels. We also have the Comfort Club, a maintenance program that gives you two check-up and tune-up visits a year.

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