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View Full Version : Is There an Ideal Thermostat Setting ?



Andrew Joiner
01-22-2013, 12:56 PM
I'm posting this mostly to say I give up. We have a well insulated non drafty house. My wife likes to turn the thermostat way up rather than put on a sweater. I'm happy putting on a sweater when I feel cold. We can afford the natural gas no problem. It probably only costs $50 a month more to "overheat" our house. I consider it a waste, but I have to let go of that to keep the peace.

From now on I will be wearing a thin T-shirt, no sweater and biting my tongue all winter.

I bet this a common problem,right?

Mike Henderson
01-22-2013, 1:09 PM
It seems to be. Luckily, both my wife and I (both over 60) like the house cooler, certainly below 70 degrees, maybe 65 in the winter. One thing I noticed when visiting friends who live in the northern US (multiple friends in different locations) is that they keep their house very warm in the winter, perhaps 78 degrees. I'm just dying when I visit them - there's a limit to how much clothes you can take off and still be decent.

I don't understand it because you can just put on a sweater if you're cold and 68 (for example) is not really cold.

Mike

Bruce Page
01-22-2013, 1:17 PM
I have fought that battle and compromised. We keep the house at 71, 65 after 11pm. She would prefer 76/70, me, 68/63.

Jim Rimmer
01-22-2013, 1:18 PM
You don't indicate your age but just wait till menopause if you haven't experienced that yet. Set the heat to 78 for an hour and then switch to A/C. :D We generally set ours at 72 in the winter and 74 or higher in the summer.

ray hampton
01-22-2013, 1:22 PM
You don't indicate your age but just wait till menopause if you haven't experienced that yet. Set the heat to 78 for an hour and then switch to A/C. :D We generally set ours at 72 in the winter and 74 or higher in the summer.

we use 75 during the winter and 80 during the summer

David Weaver
01-22-2013, 1:33 PM
When we cut our fuel down and hauled it to the house, we kept the house hot. Now that it's natural gas, we keep it at about 68 degrees in winter and 80 in the summer. You can afford a lot of gas with natural heat, but it goes against my wants to spend money on something that literally goes up the chimney if I can help it. It'd be cooler than that if I didn't have a wife and kids, and there would be no air conditioning in the summer.

David G Baker
01-22-2013, 1:38 PM
70 during the day and 68 at night in Winter. No heat in Summer and AC (window unit in bedroom) when the temp hits around 90 with humidity high. If a person feels cold I recommend letting them have the warmth that they need because they really do need it if they feel cold. It shouldn't be a contest of wills but a feeling of comfort in their home.

Fred Perreault
01-22-2013, 1:38 PM
Here on the Cape, sticking out in the water some, we ( 65, and 64 yrs old) have a programmable thermostat. It is at 60 from 9PM till 5AM, then it is 66 from 5AM till 7AM. Then 60 from 7AM till 4PM, then 68 from 4PM till 9PM, and on and on.... That is for the cooler and coldest months. In recent years, with warmer Falls and seemingly shorter Winters, the baseboard hotwater heat is used mostly from late November to early April, give or take week or so. I guess that the ideal setting is the one that makes the most people (or the most important) happy. At those temps I often wear a short sleeved shirt, and honey wears a sweater... or 2 :)

Steve Meliza
01-22-2013, 1:46 PM
The ideal setting is the one where everyone can be made reasonably comfortable by adding or removing clothing. If you need shorts and she needs a sweater and you're both comfortable then it is ideal. You can only remove so much clothing so there is a limit on how high the ideal setting can be.

Stephen Tashiro
01-22-2013, 2:17 PM
Adding or removing clothing I can make the torso comfortable in a variety of temperatures - but nose, ears and hands are a different matter. Indoor temperatures in 60's make my nose cold and "sniffly". The temperature setting also influences humidity. Maybe all these variables explain why we often see little space heaters in "heated" buildings and fans in air conditioned buildings.

Working outdoors in the Winter, I find a dusk mask and ear protectos are very comfortable since they keep my nose and ears warm.

Brian Elfert
01-22-2013, 3:00 PM
I live alone, but I keep my thermostat at 69 degrees in the winter and 75 degrees in the summer. I do set the heat back during the hours I am not home and overnight.

David Helm
01-22-2013, 3:33 PM
67 from 6 to 9 AM, 55 from 9AM to 5PM, 67 from 5PM to 9PM, 55 from 9PM to 6AM. Summertime is irrelevant because the trees keep our house cool. Air conditioning is rare here. I didn't mention that my post-menopausal wife likes to have a window wide open all winter (in the bedroom). Never known a woman who prefers high heat!

Andrew Joiner
01-22-2013, 3:37 PM
You don't indicate your age but just wait till menopause if you haven't experienced that yet. Set the heat to 78 for an hour and then switch to A/C. :D We generally set ours at 72 in the winter and 74 or higher in the summer.

Jim,
I'm 62 and haven't had menopause yet.:) My wife is pretty much over it as far as I can tell.

Andrew Joiner
01-22-2013, 4:16 PM
Wow, everyone got right into times and temps. Exactly what I'd expect from a bunch of woodworkers. I would keep it at 62F daytime and 58F for sleeping if it was just me. I have warm sweaters and a down comforter.

We have been keeping it at 64F at night for years,but that will change now. My guess is 68F night and 74F day would be her ideal range.

My wife says she doesn't even look at the numbers when she turns up the thermostat! She just wants the house warm when she feels cold. She's gone most work days so I would turn it down to 64F . When she gets home she's mad that I kept it so cold all day. It only takes 10 minutes for the house to get to 74F or 10 seconds to put on a sweater so I never saw her point.

I will just have to let go and accept the situation. It's one of the rare things we argue about and really not important in the long run.

Jay Jolliffe
01-22-2013, 4:25 PM
We keep the thermostat at 65. Winter or summer....I don't understand raising it to 80 in the summer as some have stated. If you have radiant heat you can't just turn it up or down when you like. It's not instant heat....

Brian Elfert
01-22-2013, 4:49 PM
We keep the thermostat at 55. Winter or summer....I don't understand raising it to 80 in the summer as some have stated. If you have radiant heat you can't just turn it up or down when you like. It's not instant heat....

Air conditioning in the summer, not heat. I would be wearing a jacket and snow pants if I heated my house at only 55 degrees.

Jay Jolliffe
01-22-2013, 5:00 PM
I meant 65 not 55....We heat with wood also so the furnace doesn't run to much..

Gordon Eyre
01-22-2013, 5:11 PM
Maybe you should define "way up" so that we could decide if your wife is really overheating the house. We settle on 72 during the day and 65 at night.

ray hampton
01-22-2013, 7:31 PM
We keep the thermostat at 65. Winter or summer....I don't understand raising it to 80 in the summer as some have stated. If you have radiant heat you can't just turn it up or down when you like. It's not instant heat....

please excuse me folks but in the summer time we turn the AC UP then turn the heat up in the winter
I set the control to cool the house down to 80 degrees except when I work outside then will lower the temperature to 75 degrees

Ed Aumiller
01-22-2013, 7:43 PM
Currently.....74 in winter, 80 in summer...
Before we had an 8 year old it was 70 in winter and 75 in summer....

Andrew Joiner
01-22-2013, 9:18 PM
Maybe you should define "way up" so that we could decide if your wife is really overheating the house. We settle on 72 during the day and 65 at night.

Here's the problem Gordon. My wife doesn't even look at the numbers when she turns up the thermostat. Most of the time the dial is turned up to make the house 72 to 76F.

Randal Stevenson
01-22-2013, 10:48 PM
My wife says she doesn't even look at the numbers when she turns up the thermostat! She just wants the house warm when she feels cold. She's gone most work days so I would turn it down to 64F . When she gets home she's mad that I kept it so cold all day. It only takes 10 minutes for the house to get to 74F or 10 seconds to put on a sweater so I never saw her point.

I will just have to let go and accept the situation. It's one of the rare things we argue about and really not important in the long run.

You might consider space heaters as an accessory if there is a room that she stays in more then others. I know my mom has a couple of places in the house she stays, and the one smaller room seems fine, but the larger room seems chilly to her. Putting in a space heater to bring it up and only it, makes it seem warmer (no cold spots).
The line a friends wife said to her husband, always makes me laugh: "frigid house, or frigid spouse, you decide".

Jay Runde
01-22-2013, 11:31 PM
We keep the thermostat at 65. Winter or summer....I don't understand raising it to 80 in the summer as some have stated. If you have radiant heat you can't just turn it up or down when you like. It's not instant heat....

If you'd pay the difference in our electric bill, I would gladly keep the thermostat at 65 during the summer. Right now it runs 450+ during the summer months keeping it between 78 (occupied) and 82 (when unoccupied). I would hate to see what it would cost to keep it at 65 degrees during the summer.

Keith Westfall
01-23-2013, 3:53 AM
You can only remove so much clothing so there is a limit on how high the ideal setting can be.

Maybe if you got to the point where there was nothing left to take off, it might make a difference... :D

Jay Jolliffe
01-23-2013, 6:03 AM
Living in Maine you don't need air conditioning.....

Jason Roehl
01-23-2013, 6:18 AM
66F during the day here (my wife stays home, homeschooling the children), and 62F at night during the heating season. Our highest natural gas bill in the 5.5 winters we've been in the house has been about $190 or so. We do have a solar panel heater that does help on sunny days (solar box on the roof with a blower, controlled by a snap-disk thermostat in the solar box).

In the summer, the A/C is set to 77F, thought I might turn it down (cooler) by a degree or two if it's very humid and the temperature isn't high enough to make the A/C run much.

My theory is that if you set the thermostat right at the limit of what you can stand, then your body will also better adapt to the much harsher outside temperatures. I also try to go as long as I can in the fall wearing shorts, no jacket, etc. and the converse in the spring so that I will be more acclimated to the coming winter and summer, respectively. I've gotten to where I don't mind winter as much, and the heat saps my strength more than it used to, so I must admit that I'm quick to crank the A/C when I get in my vehicles in the summer.

Bill ThompsonNM
01-23-2013, 7:53 AM
I'm posting this mostly to say I give up. We have a well insulated non drafty house. My wife likes to turn the thermostat way up rather than put on a sweater. I'm happy putting on a sweater when I feel cold. We can afford the natural gas no problem. It probably only costs $50 a month more to "overheat" our house. I consider it a waste, but I have to let go of that to keep the peace.

From now on I will be wearing a thin T-shirt, no sweater and biting my tongue all winter.

I bet this a common problem,right?

My wife and I pretty much agree on our thermostat, we're both cheap and with heating a large house with LP gas we have to be! Might I suggest, with Valentines Day coming up, perhaps some really nice cashmere sweaters for a present might save some heating bills. (Alpaca goes over well, too)