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Serving the Greater Los Angeles Area


Serving the Greater Los Angeles Area


JMS Air Conditioning and Heating Blog

What Temperature Should I Set My AC During a Heatwave?

When it is hotter outside, you may have the desire to feel even cooler inside. We get it. You want to stay comfortable when you are within the walls of your home. However, it is important to understand that your air conditioner has limitations on how cool it can make your home. During a heatwave when the area is experiencing extreme temperatures, your air conditioner may not seem like it is performing as well. 

This is not a flaw. Instead, it is completely normal due to the extreme temperatures outside. Of course, if you do think that something is wrong, you can always give our team a call for AC repair in Los Angeles. In the meantime, you can keep reading to learn more about what you should expect out of your air conditioner during a heatwave, including what to set your thermostat to.

AC Cooling Capacity

Experts estimate that your air conditioner can only cool the air in your home about 20° lower than the outdoor temperature. This means if there is a heatwave with temperatures over 100°, you’re not going to be able to get your home down to the typical 73° that you may expect. Even if you usually set your thermostat higher, like at 78°, those results may not even be achievable. 

If it is 105° outside, your air conditioner can realistically only get your home down to about 85°. We know that this can seem inconvenient, but it is a reality. The good news is that the heatwave will pass and your air conditioner will be able to cool your home just as effectively as it always did.

Professional Recommendations

We recommend that you monitor the outdoor temperature and increase your thermostat settings accordingly. If it is 105° outside and you keep your thermostat set to 73°, your air conditioner will be working around the clock in an attempt to produce results that simply are not possible. It may stay on for longer cooling cycles or turn on more frequently, adding strain to the system. 

This is also going to increase your monthly energy bills by a lot. If you want to avoid surprise energy bills and take care of your air conditioner, set the thermostat a little higher and use our tips below for keeping comfortable during a heatwave.

Tips for Staying Cool

Another tip is to utilize fans in your home to create airflow. If you have ceiling fans, turn them all on. Make sure that the fans are set to turn counterclockwise so that they are bringing air down in your home. That’s right, your ceiling fan can move in two different directions. In the winter, you should switch the settings so that they move clockwise and blow upward to bring heat that pools at the ceiling down into your home. Leaving your ceiling fans moving clockwise in the summer will not be as effective.

If you don’t have ceiling fans, you can stop by a local store and purchase a few floor fans to help keep air circulating in your home. Feeling airflow around you can actually make your home feel cooler, even when the temperature is higher.

JMS Air Conditioning and Heating has your back. Call us today to schedule an appointment for air conditioning service in Los Angeles, CA!

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