Summer is here and couples and families across the country are packing their bags ahead of leaving for planned summer vacation trips. Are your home and your air conditioner ready for you to be gone? How you should manage your central AC while away on vacation depends on a few things, including the length of your vacation, the weather, the unit’s efficiency and more. If saving energy is your ultimate goal, then turning the AC off completely the entire time you’re gone may be the right option for you. However, your air conditioning service in Visalia, CA highly recommends leaving the AC turned on but turned up while you’re away, rather than turned off. Here’s why. How long you’ll be away First off, the better option for those going away for only one or two days is to keep the air conditioner turned on. Just set the temperature higher—about 8 to 10 degrees above where you have it set at when you’re at home. This may put additional strain on your AC when you return home and lower it back to a more comfortable temperature, but leaving it on saves energy and keeps the humidity level under control. The easiest way to manage the temperature while you’re gone is to program your thermostat to run your AC at certain times of the day. It’s for this reason that professional HVAC technicians recommend programmable thermostats. These devices allow you to set the temperatures you want on the days and times you want it to turn on and off automatically. One thing you can do to help your AC not have to work as hard is close the curtains before leaving. This’ll block the sun from heating up the inside of your home, helping to keep rooms a bit cooler. Going on a longer vacation? If your plan is to be away from your home for a week or more, you’ll save the most energy and money by turning your HVAC in Visalia, CA off completely. You can always set your programmable thermostat to begin cooling down the house about one day before your planned return. Additional considerations The length of time you’ll be gone is not the only factor. Below are a few more things to consider to help you determine whether to leave the AC on or off: The forecast: Because weather plays a role in this decision, you should look ahead at the forecast for the dates you’ll be gone. Turn the AC off if mild weather is expected, but keep it on if hot weather is in the forecast. Your home’s energy efficiency: The overall efficiency of your home is another consideration. A home with good insulation and energy-efficient windows has more resistance to heat buildup. Solar window films and curtains can also help. Indoor air circulation: Air circulation is important for keeping the humidity down. Moisture holds heat—this can make your system work harder to cool down spaces upon your return, and it can impact things like wood floors and furniture. If you need your HVAC in Visalia, CA checked or maintained, pick up the phone and call the team at McGee Refrigeration today!