At what temperature should I keep my home during hot weather?

June 10th, 2021

Choosing the right indoor temperature throughout the year, especially in areas with extreme climate differences like Gatineau can be a real balancing act. Not only do you have to balance the personal preferences and tolerances of each member of your household, most homeowners are also trying to balance their monthly energy usage and energy bills.

In this post, the clean air, and cool air specialists at Solution D’Air in Gatineau share some tips and tricks for finding the right temperature of your home during hot weather to keep you comfortable, and your energy bills within reason.

The ideal indoor summer temperature

While there may not be a magic number to satisfy all tastes and preferences, it is commonly recommended to cool your home to between 24-27ºC when at home, and set to 28ºC when the home is going to be unoccupied for more than four hours. It is also highly recommended that the HVAC system be shut off completely when the home is going to be unoccupied for more than 24 hours.*

 

At first glance, many homeowners think that maintaining an indoor temperature of 24-27ºC in the summer is too warm. But it’s important to remember that it’s not just the temperature that makes us feel uncomfortable – humidity plays a strong role in making hot, humid days unbearable for some. With this in mind, simply running the air conditioner, whether it’s a wall-mounted system, window unit, or forced-air HVAC system, removing the humidity within your home will make a dry 24-27ºC feel much more comfortable than a humid 24-27ºC.

 

How to Help your AC cool more efficiently

While you could certainly set your thermostat to the temperature you want and let the HVAC or air conditioner do all of the work, there are a number of simple steps to take to help you keep your house cooler without burdening your air conditioner and emptying your wallet.

 

By implementing some, or all of these tips, you will help to make your home feel even cooler without using more energy and spending more money on your air conditioner. Here are 10 simple ways to help cool down your home during humid summer weather:

10 Tips for a cooler home

  1. Run the AC minimally just to remove humidity – by setting the air conditioner at 27ºC or even 28ºC (with the windows closed, of course) you will be removing the humidity in your home. Adding in the other tips below will then make your home feel more comfortable without high energy bills.
  2. Use ceiling fans to keep the air circulating and help your body to self-regulate easier. Important: make sure that your fan blades are rotating counter-clockwise in the summer to push air down onto your body. In the winter, blades should rotate clockwise to draw heat back up into the room.
  3. Run the fan of your HVAC to draw up cool air from the basement. Even if you do not have the air conditioner on, you can run the HVAC fan by setting it to “on” instead of “auto”. This will circulate the air in your home through the air vents and cold air returns. Taking advantage of the naturally cooled air in the basement can be a real boost to your indoor comfort while saving on the cost of full air conditioning.
  4. Cold air falls. To keep the cold air on the upper levels of your home where it is most likely the warmest, close the door to your basement and seal or close the air vents in your basement so that you’re not cooling an already cool space.
  5. Keep the cool air in, and the hot air out by sealing cracks and crevices around your windows and door with fresh caulking or weatherstrips.
  6. Keep air circulating easily by opening all interior doors (except for the basement).
  7. Close curtains to block out direct sunlight, especially southwest-facing in afternoon and evening.
  8. Open your home up by opening the windows whenever the air is cooler outside, especially in the evenings, overnight, and early in the morning. Close them up as soon as the outdoor air heats up.
  9. Swap out your heavy winter bedding for lighter summer sheets and blankets. And PJs!
  10.  Limit the use of heat-producing appliances during the heat of the day. Try to cook, do laundry, clean, etc. during cooler hours and when you can have the windows open to help move out the heat.

Striking the perfect balance of comfort vs. energy consumption in your home is easy to achieve with a little effort. Try some of the heat-busting tips above in combination with setting your air conditioner to the ideal 24ºC to 27ºC zone during the hottest summer days.

And when it’s time to clean your air conditioner or ducts, reach out! The team here at Solution D’Air can help your cool air flowing cleanly this summer with our services including:

  • Cleaning ventilation systems (furnace, air exchanger, heat pump, roof unit and fresh air supply)
  • Cleaning air ducts
  • Cleaning exhaust ducts of all kinds
  • Wall-mounted air conditioner cleaning
  • Filter replacement

We serve the Ottawa and Gatineau regions with bilingual service. Trust the Solution D’Air team for your indoor air and breathe easy this summer.

*sources Canadian Office of Energy Efficiency (OEE) and Ontario Ministry of Energy (OME).