Hansberger Refrigeration Blog: Your AC Repair Resource

Fan On vs. Auto: Here’s How to Set Your Thermostat

Fan On vs. Auto: Here's How to Set Your ThermostatYour thermostat’s contribution to controlling indoor comfort is limited to the settings you choose. However, correctly setting your thermostat using the fan’s “on” or “auto” options can help you meet your comfort, indoor air quality and energy budget goals. Read on to learn the difference between the two settings and the benefits each offers.

On vs. “Auto”: Which Setting Is Best?

The thermostat’s “auto” setting runs the fan during cooling and heating cycles. When the A/C, heat pump or furnace turns off, the fan turns off too. The “on” setting makes the fan run nonstop after cooling and heating have stopped.

The best fan setting is unique to your preferences. Since the HVAC fan runs continuously in the “on” setting, you’re going to run up higher energy bills if you use this setting too often. Though, sometimes the “on” setting offers some benefits, such as:

  • Comfort: Many folks find that running the fan continuously provides greater comfort and may even help them sleep better with the background noise. However, you still have to contend with higher energy bills. A better solution is to run ceiling fans more often to move air. Ceiling fans generally use 90 percent less energy than the A/C or furnace.
  • Indoor air quality: With continuous airflow, the “on” setting can boost indoor air quality by cycling the air through the filter many more times. Stay on top of air filter changes, and “on” can work to alleviate symptoms caused by allergens and other contaminants. Even better still is using an air cleaner. You’ll use less energy, plus an air cleaner purifies indoor air much better than a single HVAC filter.

The Case for “Auto” Setting

The most significant reason to use the “auto” setting is energy savings. The fan motor uses a large portion of the electricity consumed in the HVAC system for both cooling and heating cycles. The same strategies hold true, however, regarding the use of ceiling fans and air purification solutions when using “auto” setting.

If you have questions about setting your thermostat fan in your Yuma home, contact Hansberger Refrigeration and Electric Company.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Yuma, Arizona about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about thermostats and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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