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What Should I Set My Thermostat to When I’m on Vacation? 

If you’re planning to leave for vacation, your mind might lean toward packing your suitcase and ensuring all travel arrangements are in place. But remember to prepare the house for your time away as well. 

One frequent question people ask is this: What adjust my thermostat to while on vacation? Your goal might be to conserve energy, but you’ll still want to avoid turning off your HVAC system. The furnace or AC system should still run a little to avoid excessive heat or cold, depending on the season. Here’s what you have to consider about setting your thermostat when you leave for vacation. 

Preparing the Thermostat for a Summer Vacation 

If you’re taking a trip at the height of summer, you can expect the temperature inside your house to increase as it gets hotter outside each day. If you don’t have air conditioning, the temperature can easily exceed 90 degrees inside—not good news if you’re concerned about delicate possessions. 

A good rule of thumb is to increase the thermostat 5 to 10 degrees warmer than you typically do throughout the day without reaching above 85 degrees. This is an ideal compromise between conserving energy and protecting the interior of your home. 

If you have a programmable or Wi-Fi thermostat, don’t forget that a “temporary” hold will resume your regular schedule at the next programmed time. So you should use the “permanent” or “vacation” hold setting when going out of town to ensure your chosen temperature sticks. 

Setting the Thermostat for a Winter Vacation 

To determine the perfect thermostat setting when traveling in the winter, follow the same technique recommended above, but backward—that is, set the temperature 5 to 10 degrees colder than you generally do over the course of the day without falling below 60 degrees. 

The most significant reason to continue heating your home while you’re out of town is to minimize the risk of frozen pipes. Any plumbing that runs against exterior walls and through unfinished spaces is at risk. Keeping the temperature at 60 degrees or higher lowers this risk. Another great idea is to have the cupboard doors open to help warm air move around the pipes under your kitchen and bathroom sinks. You might also want to turn off the water at the main shut-off valve to protect against a plumbing disaster while you’re gone. 

Adjusting a Smart Thermostat Before Going on Vacation 

If you don’t already own a Wi-Fi or “smart” thermostat, this can be a great time to upgrade. The latest innovations in thermostat technology provide outstanding benefits, both while you’re at home and away. 

For instance, you can check on the temperature remotely with your tablet or smartphone. Find out how often the AC or furnace has been turning on in your absence as it sustains the temperature you set before you left. If you’re unhappy with what you see, you can adjust the thermostat from wherever via your internet-enabled device. You can even set a comfortable temperature that will resume when you’re close to an hour away from home. 

For even greater peace of mind, Wi-Fi thermostats warn you of sudden environmental shifts, including a higher-than-expected temperature or increased moisture while you’re out of the house. 

More Vacation Recommendations 

Keep these components in mind to see to it that your home is good to go before going on your trip: 

  • Remember any delicate paintings, electronics or houseplants that are sensitive to high or low temperatures. 
  • If you’re leaving pets at home or have arranged to have a house sitter come by, you may want to leave the temperature about normal—such as 80 degrees in the summer and 65 degrees in the winter—so the conditions are comfortable enough for them. 
  • Close any window treatments to help keep the hot sun or cold winter air outside of your home. This is also a good idea if you want privacy because it keeps prying eyes from looking inside while you’re away. 
  • Arrange for HVAC maintenance before you leave to make sure your system operates efficiently and is unlikely to experience any problems while you’re gone. 

Get in Touch with Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing 

Whether you need to address thermostat-related questions or are hoping to schedule HVAC maintenance before your upcoming vacation, the HVAC experts at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing are here to help. We can suggest a new thermostat for your needs and even install it and teach you how to use it. Our services include all your HVAC requirements, from maintenance and repair to installation and replacement. Get in touch with us today to share questions or schedule a visit from one of our qualified heating and cooling technicians. 

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