Setting Your Thermostat: Fan On or Auto?

Setting Your Thermostat: Fan On or Auto?When setting your thermostat, you’ll have to decide between leaving your fan in the “on” position or setting it to “auto” mode. Most thermostats have separate controls for the air conditioner and fan. The air conditioner cools the air while the fan just moves it. You can set the temperature on the thermostat and then adjust the fan to “auto” or “on.”

“Auto” vs. “On”

In “auto” mode, the air is only moved when it’s being cooled or heated. When the thermostat detects that the air in your home has reached the temperature set point, it will shut down the cooling/heating and the fan.

In the “on” setting, the fan runs continuously even when the air conditioner isn’t cooling or heating the air.

Pros of Keeping the Fan Running

Here are a few benefits of keeping your fan running all the time:

  • It allows the air to be pulled through the air filter or purification system, leading to better indoor air quality.
  • Cooling is more evenly distributed.
  • The fan will endure less wear and tear since it will be starting and stopping less.

Downfalls of Keeping the Fan Running

The following are some reasons why the “auto” setting may be a better idea:

  • Since the air conditioner is also responsible for dehumidifying your air, moisture from the air will condense on the evaporator coil when the unit runs. When you run the fan constantly, the moisture from the evaporator coils is returned to your home.
  • The average air conditioner fan has a 500-watt motor, which can use up a lot of energy. In other words, the fan can become expensive if you leave it running all the time.
  • The air filter will clog up much faster if the fan is constantly running. This may not be a bad thing since your household air is cleaner, but it does mean that you’ll have to change them at shorter intervals.

For more information on setting your thermostat and keeping your southwest Oklahoma home comfortable, contact us at Davis Air Conditioning.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Lawton and Duncan, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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