Should I Leave the AC on During the Day When I’m Out?

Family outside in grassMore air conditioning is generally a good thing here in sunny California. There’s nothing quite like having a comfy living room powered by a strong AC unit. However, there are often questions of whether your AC should be on at all times. Let’s take a very close look at the pros and cons of leaving the AC on during the day when you’re out.

The Pros

There are a couple of advantages of leaving the AC on. When you return home, you won’t have to do a single thing. The AC will already be configured just how you like it. You can simply drop your bags and plop down on the couch. In addition, the house will already be cooled to the delight of you and your family. Depending on the model of the unit, it can take anywhere from five to 30 minutes to fully cool down your home. When the AC has been running on your drive home, you won’t have to wait a second for things to cool down.

The Cons

Next, we need to examine the cons of this habit. Leaving the AC on all day incurs a huge cost to your electricity bill. Your AC unit is one of the most costly appliances in your home. Cooling air is much more expensive than warming it up and doing so for hours on end racks up a massive cost. If you have a budget in mind, you definitely don’t want to leave the AC on. If you are out and forget to turn it off, you won’t be able to do so unless you have some sort of remote connection. It’s hard to emphasize just how much electricity an AC unit consumes. Moreover, running the AC all the time shortens its lifespan. As durable as these devices may seem, they will run out of juice sooner or later. When there’s no need to consume these valuable minutes, you’re better off saving the AC for another day.

How Long Are You Out?

One factor to consider is how long you’re out during the day. If you are simply running down to the grocery store, leaving the unit on isn’t a bad idea. In fact, you could be saving money as it won’t have to cool things again a second time. Think of it like leaving your car on at a red light, though on a much longer scale. If you are leaving for a full shift at work, you definitely want to turn it off. Eight or more hours is way too long to be running your AC on a regular basis. Making decisions when it comes to HVAC systems is all about common sense and planning ahead. Think about what your plans are for the day and whether a family member will be returning home in the near future. It’s not a bad idea to tell them how to configure the AC in light of people entering and exiting your home.

Finding a Suitable Setting

If you’re committed to leaving the air conditioner on, you’ll want to find a suitable setting. There’s no need to chill all the inanimate objects in your home to a super low temperature. Many experts recommend 78 degrees Fahrenheit as a reasonable temperature. You can even go higher if you wish. The bottom line is to turn the AC to a relatively low setting. You’ll be able to save power while keeping the system on in some shape or form. Fortunately, many modern units have energy-saving settings. These are amazing for those ultra-hot days where you simply don’t want to turn things off. You can make a quick trip to the supermarket and return home within an hour without incurring a financial penalty.

Contact Professional Services

When all is said and done, it’s not usually advised to leave the AC on during the day when you’re out. Although it might feel nice when you return home, there are some serious drawbacks. For more info regarding your AC, the professionals at Honey's Air & Solar in Modesto, CA, can be a great resource. Not only do we handle ACs, but we are also experts in heat pumps, furnace tune-ups, and furnace installation. Do not hesitate to send us an email or give us a call today to discuss any of the above services.

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