How to Set Your Thermostat for the Winter

Winter is here and half of your family is cozy while the other half is complaining about being freezing… or overheating. Whichever it is, they aren’t comfortable with the temperature of the house. So, what can you do to make your house pleasant for everyone? And can you save energy, too? Quality Homes of Rochester has the answers.

The Magic Temperature for Winter Comfort at Home

According to numerous resources, including the US Department of Energy, 68℉ is the magic number for both comfort and energy savings. If 68℉ is cooler than you’re used to, gradually work your way to it by lowering the thermostat by one degree per week until you get there. Toss on an extra sweater, some fluffy socks or slippers, or snuggle under a throw blanket while you adjust.

You can save more on your energy bill by lowering the thermostat slightly overnight when you’ll be toasty in bed. 

The World Health Organization (WHO) advises us that 64℉ is the lowest indoor temperature that is safe for most adults. Lower temperatures can lead to respiratory problems. Note that 64℉ is not advisable for infants, small children, older adults, and people with health problems.

Pro Tip:

If you go on vacation, your thermostat can be set at 55℉, which will keep pipes from freezing, but not waste money heating your house when nobody is home.

68℉ Still Feel Too Cold?

Take a look at the thermostat placement in your home. Is it in a warm or sunny spot? This can cause the thermostat to have a falsely high reading or ghost reading, and adjust the temperature of your home according to that incorrect reading.

Your thermostat should be located on an interior wall near the center of your house for best performance and comfort.

Types of Thermostats

There are four general types of thermostats. Each type has different features, and each brand varies as well. The descriptions below are general. You may find unique assortments of features depending upon the brand/type you choose.

Traditional Thermostats

standard thermostat

Traditional dial thermostats are the least expensive option with no special features.

Programmable Thermostats

This option allows you to program settings to lower the temperature during the night and when nobody is home on the thermostat itself.

Smart Thermostats

Smart thermostats connect to the Internet so you can control them remotely and have a variety of features depending on the model. They can self-adjust based on weather, a programmed schedule, and some have motion sensors to heat the rooms your family uses the most.

Wi-Fi Thermostats

You can connect a Wi-Fi thermostat to your home’s wireless internet so that you can adjust the temperature via a smartphone or tablet app.

One Last Note

If your electric bills are still higher than you’d like, it’s probably time to have an HVAC professional look at your furnace. It may need cleaning, a new filter, or you may want to upgrade to a new energy-efficient model.