What Should Thermostat Be Set At In Fall?

As temperatures begin to fall, it's time to think about adjusting the thermostat again. Fall is usually a chilly season. So, you might be wondering—what's the best thermostat setting for the fall? If that's your concern, let's go over the details. 

It depends on your priorities. Set the thermostat to your preferred temperature if comfortable living is essential to you. Otherwise, the most cost-effective thermostat setting for the fall would be 68 degrees Fahrenheit. For more comfort, increase it by a few degrees. 

At this point, you might be wondering why 68 degrees Fahrenheit is the cost-effective setting. Why not go a little higher? These are fair concerns. We'll go over the arguments for and against this recommendation. To learn more, keep reading.

Setting the thermostat to 68 degrees Fahrenheit, What Should Thermostat Be Set At In Fall?

The Best Thermostat Settings For Fall

A temperature of 68 degrees Fahrenheit looks like a number a person could randomly pick. What are the arguments for this setting? It's simple. That temperature range is a Department of Energy recommendation. 

More specifically, the Department of Energy recommends setting the thermostat to 68-72 degrees. Are temperatures getting warmer? A thermostat setting at 72 degrees Fahrenheit won't make your AC work harder to bring the temperature down. 

Setting the thermostat level to 78 degrees Fahrenheit

If temperatures are getting chilly, that setting won't stress your furnace to bring the temperature up. It's a strategy you can use regardless of the season. 

Therefore, the strategy makes 68 degrees Fahrenheit the perfect setting for a home in the fall. The plan is to eliminate as much temperature difference from temperatures inside and outside your home. It saves you money in the long run. In addition, it puts less stress on your HVAC system. 

Should You Increase The Setting If You Feel Uncomfortable?

There are arguments to be made against this recommendation. Some of us are more temperature-sensitive than others. Sometimes temperatures outside can get too cold in other parts of the country. So, a thermostat setting of 68 degrees would still feel too low for the fall. 

It raises the question—what can you do for your comfort? We'd have to look towards the response of the DOE. A spokesperson from the Department of Energy suggests it's up to you to decide the best temperature setting. 

The argument is that their guidelines are just recommendations. More specifically, they are recommendations for achieving greater energy savings at home. So, if that's not your priority, you can adjust the thermostat as you please.

What Adjustments Can You Make For Comfort?

Still, if you want a balance of savings and comfort, you can make some adjustments at home. You can do a combination of sorts. 

So, if comfort is essential, increase the thermostat setting by a few degrees. Instead of 68, you can settle somewhere around 70-72 degrees Fahrenheit. If that's still chilly for you in the fall, you can avoid raising the temperature in a few ways. 

The first way would be to wear warmer clothing. When you're at home, you're not under the pressure of maintaining a professional look. So, you can get as comfortable as you'd like. 

Wear a sweater, some warm sweats, or lounge around in pajamas. That's not to mention the many blankets you can carry around. You can even be more active at home than you can at work. 

Move around and get in some light exercise to increase your body temperature. Otherwise, increase the setting slightly and wear warmer clothes in general.

General Strategy For Energy Savings

Changing the thermostat to 68 degrees Fahrenheit

Leaving your thermostat to a temperature setting of 68 degrees Fahrenheit is a start. If you want to improve your energy savings, there's still more to the strategy. It all depends on how long you stay at home. 

Some people are lucky enough to work from home. Therefore, a thermostat setting between 68-72 degrees would make sense. Since you're staying home for most of the day, comfort reigns supreme. 

However, what if you aren't at home for the majority of the day? Maybe you travel to work. So, you're outside of the house for more than 8 hours a day. In this case, you might want to reconsider your thermostat settings.

After all, since you're not home for most of the day, who will need the comfort at home? 

What Should The Thermostat Be Set At When Away From Home?

hand adjusting air conditioner button at 70 degree Fahrenheit in the apartment for comfortable

There are a few factors to consider when you want to adjust the thermostat when you're not home. First, who else lives with you? If you have a family and pets, you probably want to keep the thermostat consistent. 

If you have houseplants, you'll also have to consider them. Most plants can survive anywhere around 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit. Some may be able to handle temperatures as low as 60. They should do well as long as temperatures don't drop to 50 degrees. 

Someone's going to be at home at any given time. Their comfort matters too. So, it'd probably be best to leave it at 68-72 degrees Fahrenheit. 

How Many Hours Are You Away From Home?

The second factor to consider is how long you stay out of your home. It's a concern for others who are living with you too. If you're not away for longer than 4 hours, it's not worth the effort to lower the thermostat setting. 

However, if everyone in the household is away for 8 hours or more, you can set the thermostat lower. HVAC technicians would recommend setting it at least 5 degrees lower. A temperature range around 60-63 degrees Fahrenheit is advisable when you're not home. 

Once you return, you're free to increase it for the rest of the day. This process can be easy to set up if you have a smart thermostat. Some of them even learn your behavior. 

So, it lowers or increases the temperature depending on the settings you've had in the past. If you don't own one, it's an option to consider. 

Setting The Thermostat Before Bed

The next step towards better energy savings is to consider the night. The reasoning is simple. You're going to be in bed. That's where you have all the blankets and other warm items. 

In addition, you will sleep for the majority of the night. Therefore, you could also lower the thermostat setting at night. Instead of staying at the 68-degree recommendation, you can drop it to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Additionally, you might want to return home to an environment already at a comfortable temperature. So, if you don't want to lower the setting while you're not at home, you could do it at night instead.

It all depends on what compromises you can make.

What Should Thermostat Be Set At In The Winter?

Cups placed on a throw near a window nook

Temperatures start to dip lower during the winter months. It's a signal that you'll have to adjust the thermostat again. If 68 degrees Fahrenheit is the recommendation for the fall, what's a good setting for the winter?

A setting of 68 degrees Fahrenheit seems to be the choice for the winter months. You won't have to make changes to the strategy. Of course, you don't have to follow the recommendation. 

You can always go lower or higher. If you feel like you won't be able to handle the temperature change, do it in increments. Lower the setting slowly until you find that sweet spot. This way, you can have the best of both worlds. You'll save on costs. In addition, you'll be comfortable. 

What Should Thermostat Be Set At In The Summer?

Thermometer out in the sun

The summer months are when you'll have to make changes. A setting of 68 degrees can be too low. It depends where you live.

For example, temperatures in places can get as high as 100 degrees Fahrenheit. So, your HVAC system will work harder to bring your indoor temperature down to 68 degrees. What would be the best range to consider?

As some suggest, a temperature range around 78-83 degrees Fahrenheit would be the best for cost efficiency. You can follow the same strategy here.

Set the thermostat towards the higher range when you're not home for more than 8 hours. So if it's 90 degrees outside, let your home hover around 80-83.

It'd make sense to keep the temperature stable if someone will be home at any point of the day. If that's the case, a temperature of 78 degrees Fahrenheit should do better.

Adjusting The Setting Before Bed

The nights in the summer months are when you can feel the temperature difference. What was once a hot day is chilly now. So, it raises the question—can you adjust the settings at night too?

You can! However, the recommendation would be to set it around 60-67 degrees Fahrenheit. Of course, it's up to you to decide if you can handle a higher temperature. Maybe the temperature is still too high in your area.

If that's the case, remember that these ranges are guidelines. Adjust it to fit your situation. Once you learn what works for you, stick to it. This way, you won't have to sacrifice comfort for savings.

Final Takeaway

Setting the thermostat to 68 degrees Fahrenheit

Changing the thermostat settings is a sensitive topic. It might even lead to arguments with others living in the house! Everyone wants a comfortable home. In any case, we hope you found the information above helpful.

Before you go, do you have other thermostat concerns? Does the room temperature not match the thermostat settings? To learn more, check out:

Room Temperature Doesn’t Match Thermostat Setting—What To Do?

Are you having trouble increasing the temperature? Does the thermostat prevent you from raising it above 70 degrees? For more information, check out:

Thermostat Won’t Go Above 70 – What To Do?

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