Although running your furnace when you’re not at home may seem counterintuitive, it’s actually the best way to protect the unit and keep energy costs low. Rather than turning off your furnace, bump the thermostat setting down a few degrees before heading out of town. This will keep your home comfortable without consuming as much energy. Keep reading for more practical energy tips.
Should You Turn Off Your Furnace When You’re Not Home?
Wondering whether you should turn off your furnace while you’re gone on vacation? After all, what could go wrong? More than you think. Here are the top two reasons why you should not turn off your furnace while away during the winter.
1. Avoid Expensive Damage
Turning off your furnace while you’re away during the winter can result in frozen furnace components and busted pipes that cause water damage.
2. Maintain Warmth
No one wants to return home from vacation to frigid indoor temperatures. Keeping your furnace on but set at a lower temperature will prevent this from happening. Plus if you’re leaving pets behind, they need some heat to stay comfortable.
Choose the Right Setting
A general rule of thumb is to set your thermostat to 68 when you’re home and decrease it to 55 degrees when you’re asleep or away for several hours or more. Doing so can help you save up to 10% annually on your energy bills.
Vacation Thermostat Settings for Gas & Oil Furnaces
If your furnace runs on gas or oil, decrease the thermostat setting by four to eight degrees. Be sure not to go below 55 degrees to prevent your pipes from freezing and wreaking havoc in your home.
Vacation Thermostat Settings for Heat Pumps & Electric Furnaces
If you have a heat pump or an electric furnace, decrease the thermostat setting by three to four degrees. Like with gas and oil furnaces, never go below the 55-degree threshold—unless you enjoy busted pipes and flooding in your home.
5 Tips to Save On Heating Costs
Want to save money on your monthly heating bill? Follow these five tips for increased cost savings.
- Install a programmable thermostat: These devices allow for on-demand temperature control and offer optimal energy efficiency.
- Replace the air filter regularly: Fiberglass air filters should be replaced monthly, while pleated air filters should be replaced quarterly.
- Schedule routine maintenance: Maintenance checks fix any issues with your heating system and prevent future issues from occurring. We recommend booking a maintenance service at the beginning of the winter season to ensure your heating system stays in tip-top shape.
- Keep heating units free from debris: Small debris can get stuck and block airflow, decreasing the system’s energy efficiency.
- Upgrade your home’s insulation: This helps lock in heat, so the warm air your heating system produces isn’t wasted. It also prevents cold outside air from seeping inside.
Schedule a Heating Repair Before Your Next Trip
Whatever type of heating system you have, our licensed HVAC technicians can repair it. Backed by over 50 years of experience providing reliable heating repairs, Eanes Home Comfort is the name you can trust for optimal comfort, energy efficiency, and monthly cost savings. Schedule an appointment with us now to get your heating system winter-ready.