What’s the Best Temperature for AC in Summer?

Tired couple on couch in warm room

When the summer heat rolls in, keeping your home cool and comfortable becomes a top priority. 

Setting the right temperature for your air conditioner (AC) is essential to strike the perfect balance between comfort and energy efficiency. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the ins and outs of air conditioning during the summer months, helping you find the ideal AC temperature that suits your needs. 

So, let’s dive in and discover the best ways to cool your home while keeping energy costs in check.

When to Start Up Your Air Conditioner:

As the scorching summer approaches, many wonder when it’s time to fire up the AC. There is no hard and fast date. Typically, a good rule of thumb is to turn on your air conditioner when outdoor temperatures consistently reach 70 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. 

Here in Oklahoma, that means somewhere between mid-May to mid-June. However, this can vary depending on your region and personal preference. It’s wise to monitor the weather and wait for the right moment to bring in the cool air.

Daytime vs. Nighttime Temperatures:

Finding the ideal AC temperature for summer — for both daytime and nighttime — is important for maintaining comfort and optimizing energy savings. During the day, a setting around 78 degrees Fahrenheit is a common recommendation by the Department of Energy

However, the ideal temperature may vary based on individual preferences and factors such as the age of your air conditioner, the age of your house, and the health of the residents.

When it comes to the best AC temperature for sleeping in the summer, it’s best to set your AC temperature for sleeping a few degrees lower than your daytime setting. A range of 75 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit is often considered optimal for a good night’s sleep. 

However, personal preferences can differ. Some individuals may prefer a slightly cooler or warmer temperature. Experiment and find what comfortable temperature works best for you.

Factors to Consider:

Several factors should be taken into account when determining the best temperature to set your AC during the summer. Here are some key considerations:

  • Age of Air Conditioner: Older units may not cool as efficiently as newer models. If your AC is aging, it may require a slightly lower temperature setting to achieve the desired comfort level.
  • Age of House: Older homes may have less insulation and air sealing, which can impact indoor temperatures. Consider weatherizing your house to reduce heat gain and help your AC operate more effectively.
  • Health of Residents: Individuals with specific health conditions may require a cooler indoor temperature for comfort. Consult with a healthcare professional if you have concerns regarding temperature and health.
  • Energy Bill and Energy Savings: Setting your thermostat a few degrees higher can lead to substantial energy savings. Each degree you raise the temperature can reduce your cooling costs by around 3%. Utilize smart thermostats to schedule temperature adjustments and optimize energy usage. 


Utilizing Ceiling Fans:

In conjunction with your AC, ceiling fans can enhance the cooling effect and provide additional comfort. Running a ceiling fan can make the room feel 4 to 6 degrees cooler, allowing you to set your AC temperature a bit higher without sacrificing comfort. Remember to turn off fans when you leave the room to save energy.

Is Setting Your Thermostat to 72 Degrees Too Low?

Setting your AC temperature to 72 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer can be quite chilly for most people. While it ultimately depends on individual preferences, energy efficiency, and factors like the age of your air conditioner and insulation in your home, a setting of 72 degrees Fahrenheit may lead to higher energy bills and potential overcooling.

A young woman getting a good night’s sleep in the summer

Like we said above, The Department of Energy recommends setting your thermostat to around 78 degrees Fahrenheit during the daytime in order to find a happy medium between comfort and energy savings.

However, everyone’s comfort levels vary. If you prefer a cooler indoor temperature, you can experiment with gradually lowering it until you find a balance that works for you. Just be mindful of the energy costs associated with lower settings and adjust accordingly.

Ultimately, finding the right temperature setting for your AC during the summer means striking a balance between your comfort, energy efficiency, and cost considerations.

The Bottom Line

When it comes to setting the temperature for your AC during the summer, it’s all about finding the sweet spot between comfort and energy efficiency. 

Consider factors such as the age of your air conditioner and house, the health of residents, and personal preferences. Experiment with different settings, keeping in mind the recommended range of 78 degrees Fahrenheit for daytime and slightly lower for sleeping. 

Embrace energy-saving practices, utilize ceiling fans, and consider smart thermostats to optimize your home’s cooling and keep your energy bills in check. 

At Hibdon’s Heat and Air, we’re here to help you create the perfect indoor oasis during the sweltering summer months. Because at Hibdon’s, we’re your kind of people… keeping you cool and comfortable all summer long.