How do you feel about your air conditioner during the summertime here in New Jersey? Is it a lovely relationship in which you feel cool and comfortable? We never want our clients to suffer through the wait for a repair during these hot summer months, so we avidly push routine maintenance to keep your unit running strong.
We’re also passionate about making sure you understand how to make your air conditioner work for you to keep your home comfy. One question that frequently arises is whether you should set your thermostat fan to “on” or “auto,” especially in the heat of summer. The reason this question gets so much attention is that it can affect the life of your HVAC unit as well as the energy efficiency of your home.
Setting your thermostat fan to “auto”
Keeping that little button clicked onto “auto” is the most energy-efficient option, which means it is also cost-effective and good for the environment. Once your thermostat reaches the desired temperature setting, the fan will go off automatically, which means it works well with your heating or cooling system to create a comfortable and moisture-free environment in your home. Also, your furnace may last longer because the fan will only be in use as needed.
On the other side of the coin, however, your fan may wear out sooner than your HVAC because of all of the starts and stops required when set to “auto.” You may also experience warm and cool pockets of air in your home because, once the furnace stops, the fan ceases to circulate air.
Setting the fan to “on.”
When set to “on,” your thermostat fan runs continuously, which, as you can probably guess, may cause your unit to work harder and possibly shorten its lifespan in the long run. Ironically, this is good for the fan because of fewer starts and stops. Your home may experience a more even distribution of heating or cooling as the air circulates constantly. If you have an air purification system within your unit, the air will be purified more readily with a fan set to “on.”
As with everything, there are downsides to keeping the fan on. Your unit will work harder, and to keep the air purified, you’ll need to change the filter more consistently. Keeping your fan running isn’t very cost-effective and could increase energy bills by up to $50 a month, which can add up quickly for the average American family.
This is a common question because there are so many pros and cons. It depends on you, the homeowner, and your priorities when deciding which setting is best. No matter what you choose, make sure to continue scheduling routine maintenance on your unit and call the professionals at Heating Specialties at (866) 923-2653 when you have questions or need a repair!