On vs Auto: Which is the better thermostat setting?
Thermostats have a wide range of features and controls that most homeowners never end up looking into or using. This goes double for smart thermostats. By adjusting your thermostat settings to better fit your home’s comfort needs, you can save money every single year. In this article, we’ll review the on versus auto settings, and discuss how smart thermostats have changed the ballgame when it comes to automating your indoor comfort.
Setting your thermostat for optimal comfort and energy savings
Here’s what you need to know about the on and auto thermostat settings and how they impact your home’s comfort year-round.
What is the on thermostat setting?
Setting the thermostat settings to ‘On’ keeps the fan running at all times. When the fan is kept running, the air is pulled through the in-built filtration system that keeps it clean. In addition, keeping the fan running will result in fewer starts and stops of the fan thereby reducing the risk of a malfunction.
The major disadvantage of keeping the fan running is that it jacks up the heating bills. Unless variable speed motor is installed, it will cost you as much as $50 per month to keep the fun running 24/7. Another con of keeping the fan running constantly is that the air filter will tend to clog up quickly due to which you will have to change the filter frequently.
Also, when the fan is running, you will feel cold air coming from the vents. While the temperature of the air will be similar to that of the space heater, it will feel cold when compared to your body temperature.
What is the auto thermostat setting?
The ‘Auto’ thermostat function will make the fan run according to your specified settings. The fan can be controlled through a timer circuit inside the unit. Generally, the auto setting will start the furnace fan about half a minute after the burner is lit. The fan is turned off about a minute after the desired temperature is reached.
The main benefit of setting the thermostat to ‘Auto’ is that it will result in more energy efficient usage. This is because the fan will run only when it’s required. Also, the air filter will need to be changed or cleaned less frequently when the thermostat setting is set to ‘Auto’.
However, more starts and stops will mean that the fan will wear out more quickly. In addition, it will result in the less efficient distribution of heat inside the room.
The above discussion will make it clear to you whether ‘On’ or ‘Auto’ thermostat setting is right for you. If you want to keep the energy bills low, you should set the thermostat to ‘Auto’. However, if you prefer more even distribution of heat inside the house, it’s better that you set the thermostat setting to ‘On’.
What about smart thermostats?
Also known as “programmable thermostats,” smart thermostats are the 21st century answer to the traditional “dial” thermostats most homes used to feature. Smart thermostats come in a variety of sizes, shapes, makes, and models, but—regardless of which one you buy—they all have one feature in common: automated temperature settings. With this thermostat, you can program the temperature of your home ahead of time on your smartphone, and then the thermostat will automatically adjust the cooling or heating system when you’re away, at home, or sleeping.
This helps homeowners save money because it removes the human element—that is to say, you personally having to turn the dial before leaving for work—from the equation. All-in-all, upgrading to a smart thermostat can cut your cooling and heating costs by up to 10% annually. This makes it one of the best ways to make your home more energy-efficient. Other tips include:
- Adding more insulation to your attic.
- Scheduling a professional cooling or heating checkup.
- Caulking around your windows to prevent drafts.
Have thermostat questions? Call us!
If you want more information about thermostats, as well as installation tips from certified and professional technicians in Albuquerque and Santa Fe, New Mexico, contact us at Wagner.