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allas heating may not be the most expensive in the country, but our chilly North Texas winters can still run up the bills. One easy, inexpensive way to keep those bills down is with a programmable thermostat.

Programmable thermostats let you define a pre-set schedule for your heating and air conditioning. They provide a convenient way to manage your heating and cooling for energy savings.

Turn your heat down by seven to 10 degrees for at least eight hours a day and you can reduce your yearly heating bill by 5 to 15 percent. You’ll see a savings of up to 1 percent for each degree you lower the thermostat for eight hours a day. A Dallas heating expert can help you choose temperatures for optimal comfort and savings.

For the greatest savings, there are a few guidelines you’ll want to follow.

Choose long energy-saving periods – You’ll see the greatest savings if you choose energy-saving set-points that are at least eight hours apart. For example, you might choose a lower temperature for the eight-hour period when you’re in bed or away at work. Contrary to what many assume, letting the house get cold doesn’t force your furnace to work harder than normal to raise the temperature again.

Avoid frequent overrides – The override modes on your thermostat let you temporarily change your thermostat setting without changing the pre-set programming. While there are appropriate times to use the override feature, you’ll run up higher heating bills if you frequently override your energy-saving settings.

Use the right override – “Temporary” and “hold/permanent” are the two override modes found on most programmable thermostats. “Temporary” mode changes the temperature only until the next pre-programmed period. This mode should be used for short-term adjustments, such as unexpectedly cold days. “Hold/permanent” maintains your chosen temperature until you cancel the override. This mode is appropriate for times when you’re away for two or more days, such as a vacation.

Pick moderate temperatures – Setting your thermostat to 80 degrees doesn’t heat your home quickly. It only wastes energy. For comfortable Dallas heating and energy savings, you might choose 68 degrees for times you’re home and awake, then program your thermostat for seven to 10 degrees lower for the times you’re in bed or away. For more precise control over your home’s temperature at specific times, choose a thermostat with adaptive recovery technology. These models calculate the amount of time needed to reach the pre-set temperature, then run the furnace so your home reaches that temperature by the programmed time.

If you’re interested in installing a programmable thermostat or any other energy-efficient HVAC equipment, contact us at Crawford Services. In the Dallas area, we provide reliable, cost-effective HVAC care.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in North Texas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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