A thermostat acts as the central hub of your home’s heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system, making decisions based on the temperature it senses in its immediate surroundings. A strategically placed thermostat facilitates accurate temperature readings, improving your comfort and potentially saving on your energy bills. External factors such as direct sunlight, air drafts, and furniture positioning can all influence the thermostat’s ability to register climate conditions accurately. Consider the following tips for finding the best spot for your home’s thermostat.
The central location of your home typically represents the average temperature of the entire house, making it an ideal spot for the thermostat. If the technician positions the thermostat in the center of a room, it can easily sense and regulate the temperature throughout the home, providing consistent comfort.
This strategic placement helps eliminate hot and cold spots, creating a balanced and comfortable environment. In addition, centrally placing the thermostat can contribute to efficient energy usage, as it prevents the HVAC system from unnecessarily overworking. It’s important to ensure that the chosen central location is not exposed to direct sunlight or drafts, as these can affect the thermostat’s readings.
Away From Heat Sources
Heat emissions trick your thermostat into thinking that your home is warmer than it is, causing it to turn off the HVAC system prematurely. This can lead to inconsistent temperatures around the house, uncomfortable living conditions, and potential energy waste. For instance, if your thermostat is near a fireplace, the heat from the fire can cause the thermostat to read a higher temperature. As a result, during winter, the HVAC system might not heat your home adequately, leaving other rooms cold. Similarly, if the thermostat is close to kitchen appliances like ovens and stoves, it may register higher temperatures, causing cooling issues in summer. Your technician will be able to help you choose an appropriate place for the thermostat.
Avoid Drafty Areas
Drafty areas pose a challenge to the proper functioning of thermostats. These areas are usually found near doors, windows, or other openings that allow air to flow in and out of your home, creating a temperature fluctuation that can mislead the thermostat. If a thermostat is placed in such areas, it may sense this cooler or warmer draft as the home’s overall temperature, causing the HVAC system to overwork or underwork. Overworking can result in higher energy consumption and, consequently, inflated bills. On the other hand, an underworking unit can lead to discomfort as the heating or cooling in the home may become insufficient.
Consider an Interior Wall
Locating your thermostat on an interior wall can contribute greatly to its accuracy. Outdoor weather conditions can affect exterior walls, potentially leading to false readings. By contrast, interior walls are typically more representative of your home’s overall temperature. They are less likely to be affected by external weather factors such as direct sunlight or wind chill. Thermostats on interior walls can better regulate your HVAC system, ensuring a more comfortable and energy-efficient environment.
Most Used Room
Consider installing the thermostat in the room your family uses most frequently. This ensures that the space where you spend most of your time is always comfortable. The thermostat will take readings from this room, adjusting the HVAC system to keep this room’s temperature at your desired setting. Keep in mind, however, that different rooms may require different temperatures to provide optimal comfort. If your home is unusually large, it is possible to use more than one thermostat to get the desired effect.
5 Feet Above the Ground
Thermostats should be installed approximately 5 feet from the ground. This height is ideal because it reflects the temperature zone people inhabit, not the floor or the ceiling. Remember that heat rises and cool air falls. If a thermostat is installed too high, it will read the warmer air near the ceiling, causing the HVAC system to think your home is hotter than it is. Conversely, if installed too low, it senses the cooler air near the floor, tricking the HVAC system into thinking the house is colder than its actual temperature. This can lead to energy inefficiencies and uncomfortable temperature fluctuations.
Avoid Areas With Plumbing
Areas with plumbing fixtures can also lead to false thermostat readings. Hot water from these sources can register as your home’s temperature, causing the HVAC system to overcool or overheat your living space. To ensure accurate readings and efficient energy usage, installing the thermostat away from areas like bathrooms, kitchens, and any spot with hot water and steam is best.
First Floor in a Two-Story Home
The second floor is often naturally warmer than the first floor as heat rises. By placing the thermostat on the first floor, you ensure that the system doesn’t prematurely shut off before the lower level has properly warmed up, keeping an effective balance in temperature regulation. However, if there’s a significant temperature disparity between the floors, consider installing a second thermostat on the upper floor for more precise control. It is important to note that you should typically avoid placing the thermostat in a finished or unfinished basement. Basements can be drafty. Additionally, basements that are partially underground can lead to cooler temperatures that are not representative of the entire home.
Avoid the Empty Hallway
An empty hallway can be a tempting spot to install your thermostat, as it would appear to provide an unobstructed view of the average temperature in your home. Unfortunately, this area often doesn’t maintain a consistent temperature due to drafts from windows or outside doors. This makes it difficult for the thermostat to accurately measure the temperatures throughout your home, leading to inefficient HVAC system operation.
Keep the Thermostat Maintained
Once you’ve found the ideal spot for your thermostat, it’s important to remember that its accuracy can be affected by factors such as dust or dirt accumulation, low batteries, and extreme temperatures. Routine maintenance can ensure your thermostat is always functioning properly, so have a technician from Beltway Air Conditioning & Heating check on it occasionally and clean it as needed. Since the weather in Hanover, MD and surrounding areas can be unpredictable, having a properly functioning thermostat is essential to maintain comfortable temperatures in your home.
Choosing the perfect spot for your thermostat is a task that requires careful consideration. Location, drafts, and heat sources are all important factors in ensuring accurate climate control and energy savings. The team at Beltway Air Conditioning & Heating can help make sure you get it right by guiding you through the installation process and helping you pick out the best possible location so you can enjoy a comfortable and energy-efficient home. We offer dependable AC furnace and heat pump installations, repairs, maintenance, and tune-ups. Other licensed and trained professionals also offer indoor air quality and ductwork solutions. We have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Contact Beltway Air Conditioning & Heating today for all your HVAC service needs in Hanover, MD, and surrounding areas.