Your thermostat offers an easy way to control your home HVAC system. Whether you have a simple analog thermostat or a state-of-the-art programmable thermostat, you need to learn all of the settings and find the right balance between staying comfortable and managing your energy costs. Here’s a quick reference to your main thermostat settings.

On Versus Auto Mode

Auto mode will run your HVAC system for as long as it takes to reach the required indoor temperature. You’ll hear your system cycle on and off and feel the conditioned air blowing through your vents. Your unit uses a built-in fan to push out the cooled air more quickly to expedite the cooling process. You can also allow the fan to run continuously. Like all fans, it has no impact on the temperature. On the other hand, running your fan continuously can be costly. In addition to the increased energy costs, it can shorten your unit’s operational life, too.

Auto mode is the recommended setting for most occasions. A programmable thermostat is also a great way to take an active role in managing your household energy consumption.


The heating and cooling settings don’t require much explanation, and it’s not uncommon to switch between the settings frequently for several months each year. The United States Department of Energy recommends setting your thermostat to 78 degrees during the summer. It’s a good idea to make gradual changes if that’s not a comfortable temperature because even a couple of degrees can make a significant difference on your monthly bill.

Home Versus Away Modes

Smart thermostats offer many intuitive features to help you manage your temperature settings. The most basic programmable thermostats will raise or lower the temperature automatically while you’re at work or asleep, and most now also allow remote or Bluetooth access. With some newer models, you can also program your preferences for when you’re in and out to make top-level changes with one push of a button. Your thermostat can also monitor your manual adjustments to automatically find ways to improve its operational efficiency.

Mountain View Heating offers a full range of heating and cooling services to homeowners in Bend OR including heat pump and furnace installation and annual HVAC maintenance. Contact us today to learn more about programmable thermostats.

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