Recommendation for setting home thermostats at 78 degrees goes viral


Energy recommendations from a government-backed program have gone viral after suggesting that people should keep their home thermostats at least at 78 degrees for cooling.

Energy Star, which works with the Environmental Protection Agency and the Energy Department to set efficiency benchmarks for appliances, electronics, building materials, lighting and other products, recommends that Americans program their thermostats to at least 78 degrees from 6 a.m.

The program then recommends temperatures be raised to at least 85 degrees from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., at which point it recommends again setting temperatures to at least 78 degrees.{mosads}

Thermostats should be then be set at 82 degrees or above from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m, according to the program.

A spokesperson for the EPA said the Energy Star program recommends that people increase their air conditioning by seven degrees when they are not at home and by four degrees when they are sleeping, depending on what temperature makes them comfortable.

“This is based on the temperature of your comfort level when awake at home,” the spokesperson said in a statement to The Hill. “The website illustrates this approach with an example of pre-programmed, energy-saving temperature settings in some programmable thermostats.”

Energy Star says Americans can “Achieve significant energy and money savings that are possible through the proper use of your programmable thermostat,” on its website. 

Although the suggestions are not new, some took to Twitter over the weekend to mock the recommendations, calling them uncomfortable even for those who want to save money on their heating and cooling bills.

Some became concerned for those who would choose these temperatures. 

Others questioned the methodology of making your home that warm while away at work or out of the house.

And others shared what they would do to avoid keeping their homes at the recommended temperatures 

Overall, social media users widely rejected the energy-saving recommendations.

Updated Aug. 21 at 12:05 p.m.

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