What Is the Best AC Temperature for Sleeping?

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.

Programmable Thermostats

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.

Blackout Curtains

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 today!

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  • What Is the Best AC Temperature for the Summer?

    What Is the Best AC Temperature for the Summer?

    When it gets hotter during the summer, it can be challenging to keep your home cool without increasing your energy expenses. Staying cool inside often means leaving your AC on all of the time, driving up your cooling costs. Finding the best summer temperature for your AC will help you stay comfortable without costing you too much money.

    Along with finding the perfect summer AC temperature, using different tricks and tools to cool your house will save energy costs and maintain a cool indoor environment. Find the best temperature and strategies for staying cool all summer long below.

    Why 78 Degrees Is the Best Temperature in the Summer

    Your comfortable indoor temperature might change depending on clothing, outdoor temperature, activity or preferences. Everyone is different and will have a favorite coolness and warmth setting for their home. While every homeowner has their comfort temperature, Energy Star recommends setting thermostats to 78 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer when you're home.

    Many people think 72 degrees is a suitable temperature for summer air conditioning, but it's actually too low to help you save money. For your home, 78 degrees is the best temperature in the summer since it's cool enough that you aren't overheating but close enough to hotter outdoor temperatures that your AC doesn't have to work as hard to maintain it. The closer the indoor temperature is to outdoor conditions, the lower your energy bill.

    What Is the Best Temperature for Sleeping?

    For nighttime, you want the temperature to be lower. The National Sleep Foundation recommends setting your AC between 60 and 67 degrees to get the best sleep. Your body cools down as you fall asleep, so sleeping in a cool room helps you get to sleep better. Since the temperature cools down at night, you can lower your AC without increasing your energy bill too much — the system won't have to use as much energy to achieve the cooler temperature, and you'll sleep better when you aren't hot.

    If you can sleep with the AC set higher at night, leave the temperature above 70. Use fans, open windows, thin pajamas and light sheets to help you stay cool while you're sleeping. Summer nights are much cooler than days, so take advantage and let night air flow through your house with open windows for a natural alternative to using the AC.

    What Is the Best Temperature for Babies?

    Neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) standards keep newborn rooms between 72 and 78 degrees to regulate infant temperatures. Since babies aren't as good at regulating their body temperatures, you'll want to keep their rooms at a comfortably warm level.

    For babies and toddlers, 65 to 70 degrees is a good level to keep their rooms at. If you are unsure of exactly what temperature to set, aim for something slightly warmer and ensure it's a level you would be comfortable wearing a T-shirt in.

    What Is the Best Temperature for Older Adults?

    Older adults should set their homes to at least 70 degrees to keep their bodies regulated in summer. As we get older, we become more sensitive to cold and heat. Older adults need to stay at a comfortable temperature to prevent overheating or hypothermia. To save energy costs, close doors and vents in rooms you don't use so your AC focuses on rooms you'll be in. Stay hydrated and cover windows to keep the house cool.

    What Is the Best Temperature for Pets and Plants?

    We aren't the only living things in our homes — our pets and plants need to stay happy and healthy, too. Whether you have animals or greenery inside, set your house climate to something that suits them.

    For dogs and cats, temperatures from 68 to 75 degrees during the day work well. Animals with longer hair might not handle heat as well as short-haired pets, so lower the AC if you have especially furry friends. If you have spiders, snakes, lizards, birds, rodents or some other kind of pet, they might have more specific climate needs. Do some research and talk to pet store employees to find out the best temperature for your pet.

    If you have houseplants, you'll need to keep them in the best growing conditions. Many houseplants, while highly adaptable, are tropical. Many plants can tolerate 58- to 86-degree environments, but keeping them in rooms 70 to 80 degrees is best for their health. At night, you can lower the temperature to 65-70 degrees. Use pebble trays with water for a cost-effective humidity-producer for your plants.

    What Is the Best Temperature for Your Belongings?

    While our first thought when cooling our house is our family members, our belongings can become damaged if they get too hot. If you have significant family photographs, documents and prints, the National Archives recommends storing them in cool places below 75 degrees. This helps protect them from chemical decay and fading.

    For your electronics, try to prevent them from overheating. Components can suffer if exposed to more extreme temperatures, so keep them in moderate conditions. Laptops are built to function between 50 and 95 degrees, but room temperature — around 68-74 degrees — is best for keeping them in working order.

    Most belongings can handle the same indoor temperatures you can, so don't worry too much about your belongings during the summer. If you think it's getting too hot in your house for your belongings, move them to a cool, dark space for protection.

    Tips for Staying Cool During the Summer

    While 78 degrees is the best temperature for your AC in summer, it can be on the warmer side for many people. If your house feels too hot, you could end up adjusting the AC again, driving up your energy bill. To help keep your home comfortable, try some of these helpful tips.

    Use Fans

    Fans and ventilation are an excellent way to keep cool during hot periods. Use small electric fans to blow air onto you and stay refreshed in summer. For an extra cooling breeze, place a bowl of ice in front of the fan. As the ice melts, the cool water vapor blows onto you with the help of the fan.

    Remember that fans cool people and not rooms — small fans are great for keeping the heat off you but won't cool down an entire space. Always turn fans off when you aren't in the room — this can help save you money on your electric bill.

    To help with humidity, use bathroom fans. Too much moisture can make a room feel even hotter than it is, so turn off any humidifiers while inside. While you shower, put the bathroom fans on to remove that excess humidity. Consider buying dehumidifiers if your home's humidity is too high. Dehumidifiers help remove the moisture from a space, making it feel cooler, so you don't need to lower your temperature.

    Change the Ceiling Fan Direction

    Along with the smaller box, desk or oscillating fans, ceiling fans are perfect for getting a gentle breeze. They work great and send out lots of air so you don't feel the summer heat. In summer, always make sure fans are spinning counterclockwise. This direction pushes the cool air down, blowing it onto you instead of pulling it up. Ceiling fans will help you feel cooler without using the AC unit.

    Increase the Temperature While You're Away

    Set your thermostat higher when you're not home for higher energy savings. Setting the thermostat 7-10 degrees higher than its usual setting for eight hours a day can save you up to 10% on your yearly cooling bill. By not having your house constantly cooling when you aren't there, your AC system will use less energy, work less hard and last longer.

    If you can't set your thermostat that high for eight hours every day, any time spent with the system set higher will still help save you money. A few hours every day at a higher setting will reduce the work your AC system is doing and lower the amount you'll have to spend on cooling costs. Try turning the AC off at night when it's cooler if possible and use fans or open windows to keep you from overheating.

    Close Shades and Weatherstrip Doors

    Closing shades or using good curtains to cover the windows during the day keeps the heat out and the cool in. Sunlight and warmth come through uncovered windows during the day, heating your home and causing your AC to kick on more frequently. Blocking the sunlight with closed shades or thick curtains will prevent most of the heat from sneaking indoors during the day.

    Weatherstripping doors and windows is a great way to insulate your house against heat and cold. Small gaps and cracks between door and window frames allow air to travel in and out of your house. Larger holes and leaks will let the cool air inside escape, making your AC work harder and heating up your home. Put quality weatherstripping on your doors and windows to create an insulated barrier, trapping the cool air indoors and keeping your house cool.

    Avoid Using Heat-Generating Appliances

    Appliances like ovens, stoves and dryers can raise indoor temperatures. Try to use them after 8 p.m. to avoid heating the house. If you have to use them during the day, try to run them only once to reduce the heat entering your home. While these appliances don't always raise temperatures a lot, any excess heat sitting in your home will cause the AC to work harder, increasing energy costs.

    Open Windows at Night

    Opening your windows at night is a great, cost-effective way to cool your house down. Cooler night air and breezes can flow through the house, lowering the temperature and saving your AC unit from having to do all the work. Turn your AC off at night and let the nighttime air blow inside, relieving you from the day's heat. Just make sure your unit can handle frequent turning on and off — repeatedly switching a unit on may wear it out, so consider getting a variable-speed unit to avoid this issue.

    While opening windows in the evening and at night is an excellent way to stay cool, keep your windows closed during the day. Open windows will let the heat and warmth of summer travel inside while the cool AC air gets sucked out. Even if there's a gentle daytime breeze, it won't be enough to keep the house cool without making your AC system work harder. Keep windows closed and covered during the day and open them at night for the best, least expensive cooling.

    Get Seasonal AC Maintenance

    You rely on your AC system to keep you cool during hot summers, and the last thing you want is an unexpected issue or outage. Forgetting seasonal AC maintenance is a common air conditioning mistake that can cost you a lot.

    Your AC constantly runs during the summer, so it needs routine maintenance to work correctly. A damaged or unmaintained unit can run less efficiently, working harder to cool the home and costing you more money on your cooling bills. The more you put off maintenance, the more likely you will need a more extensive, more expensive repair down the road.

    AC maintenance will check for issues, perform tune-ups and catch concerns before they turn into problems. Get your AC system checked at least once a year before the summer starts to keep your unit running efficiently for the whole summer.

    Seasonal maintenance will help prevent problems that cause your AC to go out, which would leave you stuck without a cool house in the middle of summer. Look into local companies' maintenance programs — they're often low-cost and easy to get. Some AC systems will even have seasonal check-ups included in their warranties for easy servicing.

    Get a Programmable Thermostat

    Programmable thermostats are a convenient way to help reduce energy costs. Installing a programmable thermostat allows you to set a schedule, setting different temperatures at different times. With a programmable unit, you don't have to remember to change the thermostat when you leave or come back home. The system will do it automatically based on the schedule you've set for each day.

    Setting a schedule and letting the house stay warmer will help cut energy costs at the push of a button. You can set different schedules for specific days, allowing you to keep the house cool all weekend when you're home and letting the house warm up during the day while you're at work. Look at installing energy-efficient thermostats or AC systems and potentially receiving energy rebates, saving even more.

    Stay Cool and Save on Your Energy Bill

    Using intelligent strategies when cooling your home will help you increase your energy efficiency and save you money during the summer. Energy-conscious systems might let you qualify for energy rebates, saving you even more on your energy bills, and programmable thermostats allow easy control over your AC system for lower cooling costs. Maximize your home's temperature system affordably with quality air conditioning products.

    With over 30 years of experience, Ingram's Water & Air offers expert resources and high-quality HVAC products to ensure your home is as comfortable and cost-efficient as possible. Explore our heating and air conditioning options to find the best system for your home today.

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