What Is the Best AC Temperature for Sleeping in Summer?
On average, people spend about one-third of their life
sleeping. Without enough sleep, we wouldn’t be able to function each day. Sleep plays a significant role in our health, and the temperature of the room we sleep in also plays a significant role in the quality of our sleep. A room that’s too cold or too warm can make it challenging to fall and stay asleep.
Continue reading to learn more about how temperature affects your sleep and the ideal thermostat setting when sleeping in summer. We’ll also go through some ways to help you save on your energy bill while ensuring you get a good night’s rest.
How Does Temperature Affect Sleep?
Temperature plays a crucial role in the depth and quality of your sleep. Our core temperature drops as we sleep, and colder environments help our bodies maintain a lower internal temperature, keeping us in a deeper, restorative sleep.
Finding the right sleeping temperature is essential for your physical and mental health. Generally, a room’s temperature should be somewhere between 60 and 67 degrees
for optimal sleep, but the perfect temperature will change from person to person.
What Factors Affect the Right Temperature for You?
While temperature management may seem simple, numerous factors can affect what you should set your AC to at night in the summer. Your ideal temperature may be significantly different from someone else’s, depending on the following factors:
- Perception: Everyone perceives temperatures a little differently. For example, if you’ve lived in the same place for a significant time, you’ve likely adjusted to the climate, while new visitors may find it more extreme. On a smaller scale, you may feel cold in a room that feels warmer to others.
- Humidity: Humidity can play a role in your temperature experience. A warm day outside can feel even hotter when the humidity level is high. You’ll need to adjust the temperature accordingly if you live in a humid area or have increased humidity indoors.
- Clothing choices: What kind of clothes do you prefer to wear when you’re at home? Your clothing choices will impact your temperature perception — layers and heavier fabrics can make you feel warm when your interior is already cold.
- Circadian rhythm: You can think of your circadian rhythm as your body’s “master clock” responsible for regulating your sleep schedule on a 24-hour cycle. This cycle also regulates your body temperature, making your body warmer when awake and colder while you sleep. When your circadian rhythm is off balance, it can take some time to readjust to find the perfect temperature.
- Light exposure: Light exposure, particularly blue light, sends signals to your “master clock” and helps keep your body in a regular sleeping rhythm. Too much light exposure during the night can prevent your clock from activating, making it hard to fall and stay asleep.
- Ecology: Some areas in the world require more cooling than others. For example, a home in Death Valley will require frequent air conditioning, while a house in Ohio will need to switch from heating to cooling based on the season.
- Cost: Having complete control over your temperature can add up, especially if you live in a home with an older HVAC unit. Upgrading these units can also be expensive. Many people choose to save on their energy bills by sacrificing their temperature comfort, impacting what their ideal temperature is.
How Can You Save Money on AC During the Day?
Many people believe they have to commit to higher energy costs to stay cool in the summer. They’re partially right — consistently lower AC temperatures can quickly raise your utility bill as your HVAC unit works overtime to keep your home cool from the summer heat.
Setting your temperature seven to 10 degrees higher than your baseline can help you save around 10% on your energy bill
. While sitting inside such a warm home can still be uncomfortable when it’s already hot outside, you can still set your thermostat slightly higher if you prepare for the season. For example, wearing lightweight clothes for the summer can make you feel cooler, preventing you from having to set the AC too low.
Your ideal temperature may differ from other people’s. For example, your friend might prefer to keep their thermostat set at 70, while you might shiver at the thought of keeping your house that cool. Once you’ve determined your ideal temperature, consider raising it about four degrees during the day. You’ll reduce your energy costs and you can keep yourself cool despite the higher temperature by using the following methods instead.
If you’re trying to save money on your air conditioning during the day, you should consider investing in a programmable thermostat.
Rather than sitting in a hot home, a programmable thermostat allows you to schedule different temperatures for different times throughout the day. You can program the thermostat to a higher temperature while you’re away from your home, lessening the energy your AC unit utilizes while you’re gone. You can also program the thermostat to reach your ideal temperature 30 minutes to an hour before you plan to return.
Utilizing a ceiling or floor fan helps push cold air against your skin, making you feel cooler than you would with just the AC. As fans circulate the air, they encourage your body’s natural evaporative cooling, meaning you won’t need to turn the AC down until it’s time to sleep.
The sun can penetrate your windows and make your interior feel warmer, making your AC work overtime to keep up. Blackout curtains prevent the sun from warming your home, making it easier for your HVAC unit to reach your ideal temperature and saving you money during the day.
Weatherstrip Doors and Windows
You may have slight gaps between your windows and doors that allow warm outside air to seep in, forcing your AC unit to work overtime. You can install weatherstripping on all your doors and windows to create a seal, preventing that warm air from creeping inside.
What Is a Good Sleeping AC Temperature in the Summer?
The right AC temperature will be significantly lower at night than during the day, letting your body get the adequate rest it needs. Saving money on your AC during the day will let you set your thermostat to your desired temperature at night.
People generally sleep best at night in rooms between 60 to 67 degrees
. However, only you can determine your ideal temperature. If 67 is too cold for you, go up a few degrees until you reach a temperature that’s still cool but comfortable.
You can utilize fans If you’re concerned about HVAC costs. If you live in a colder climate, you can also open a window at night to let cool air in and reduce your AC unit’s work. Remember to close the window before the day gets too warm so you can keep the cool air inside.
How Can You Protect Yourself from Overheating at Night?
A warm home in an even warmer outside environment can make it challenging to get quality sleep, affecting your focus at work and your ability to stay energized for essential tasks. A good night’s rest is critical for your physical and mental health. If you’re overheating at night and looking for relief, try the following to prevent overheating:
- Adjust your environment: If you’re still overheating with the AC running, try using a fan or opening a window if the air outside is cooler. Avoid wearing thick, long-sleeved clothing at night in favor of a light t-shirt and cotton shorts or something equally comfortable and breathable. Reducing the number of blankets and sheets you use can also help prevent you from overheating in the middle of the night.
- Utilize helpful habits: Practicing different habits can help you from overheating. Since exercise raises your body temperature, it’s best to avoid working out close to bedtime. On the other hand, taking a hot bath an hour or two before bed encourages your temperature to drop when you get out of the water.
- Eliminate triggers: Various triggers can bring on night sweats or excessive body heat. Avoiding smoking, alcohol, caffeine and unnecessary stress can help you sleep better at night and feel more rested.
Other Sleep Tips
Getting a good night’s rest is essential and AC temperature is only one factor in your sleep quality. The following are other ways to help ensure you get plenty of rest each night:
- Find your preferred position: Some people sleep better in one position than another. For example, sleeping on your back or stomach can make you uncomfortable if you’re a side sleeper, making it harder to fall and stay asleep. It will be easier to fall asleep in a comfortable position.
- Cultivate a comfortable environment: Sleeping in a relaxing atmosphere is the best way to get a good night’s rest. You should outfit your bedroom as comfortably as possible with pillows and blankets that suit your preferences. Eliminating blue light an hour or two before you go to bed will prevent disrupting your circadian rhythm, helping you fall asleep more easily.
- Control the noise level: Sleeping in an environment with loud music or heavy traffic can be challenging. If you can, reduce noise so you can get to and stay asleep. If you can’t eliminate all the noise, invest in ear muffs or noise-canceling headphones to reduce as much background noise as possible. You can also consider using white or pink noise to cover sounds from outside.
- Test for sleep disorders: Some disorders can affect your ability to sleep, such as insomnia, sleep apnea or sleep paralysis. If you believe you may struggle with any of these disorders, consult your doctor about treating your symptoms and improving your sleep. Medications, therapies and other treatments can be effective at helping individuals with these conditions find relief.
- Maintain a consistent cycle: Maintaining your circadian rhythm is essential to ensure you can sleep each night. If you’ve been struggling to get a good night’s rest, you should make an effort to keep your sleeping cycle consistent. For example, you should avoid taking naps if you struggle to get to sleep each night. Exercising or staying active during the day can help you get tired enough to sleep.
What Should You Do If Your Thermostat Isn’t Reaching the Set Temperature?
Having your thermostat fail to reach its set temperature can be frustrating. If you’re experiencing this problem, you can troubleshoot your AC by:
- Checking the thermostat: If you haven’t been getting cold air from your AC, your thermostat may be the culprit. Check the batteries to ensure they’re still providing an adequate charge. If your thermostat is by a window, heating source or in a hot or cold room, its location may affect the temperature reading. Additionally, any debris or dust buildup can cause your thermostat wires to loosen, leading to malfunctions that cause your AC unit to fail to cool your home.
- Checking air filters: If you’re running your air conditioner, it’s vital to pay attention to how often you change your air filter. Air filters can clog with dust, debris and other particles floating around, causing your HVAC unit to perform poorly. In general, you should change your air filter about once a month. However, people with pets or respiratory conditions should consider changing their air filter more often to prevent buildup.
- Checking the unit: If your home isn’t reaching its set temperature, it could be a problem with your AC unit. Check your system condenser to ensure that nothing is blocking it, such as debris or overgrown landscaping that can prevent heat from exhausting. You can also contact an HVAC technician to determine if there are any additional issues with your unit.
- Considering your system’s age: Another reason your thermostat may not reach the set temperature is your unit’s age. While some units have a longer life span, if your system is 15 years or older, it could be time to consider upgrading to a new unit. You can contact your HVAC technician to determine if it’s time for a replacement.
Stay Cool With AC From Ingram’s
In the summer heat, staying cool is more important than ever. It’s not only a matter of comfort but an essential part of getting quality sleep each night. Ingram’s Water & Air has been servicing customers for over 30 years, giving us the expertise to help you find a new HVAC unit that will fulfill all your cooling needs.
We also understand the importance of saving money on energy costs, which is why our prices are often lower than what you’d find at a local retailer. We’ll help you find a system that meets your budget and needs. Browse our assortment of HVAC products