As heat waves sweep the country and people spend most of their time at home due to COVID-19, Americans are looking for ways to keep costs under control. New research conducted by Sense and SurveyMonkey shows that nearly all Americans (91%) are staying home more this summer due to work-at-home policies or camp and school closures. More than 3 out of 4 Americans (78%) say they’re concerned that home energy costs will be higher than usual as a result, but only 6 out of 10 are taking steps to reduce their energy consumption. Other findings show:
- Only 44% plan to turn up their thermostat settings to keep a lid on costs
- 90% prefer to set their thermostats below 78 degrees, the temperature recommended by the US Department of Energy to stay comfortable while minimizing your utility bill. In fact, the most popular setting was a cool 68 to 72 degrees.
- The most popular energy-saving measure will be to use fans as much as possible rather than air conditioning (55%), while 35% plan to turn off their AC entirely and open windows to stay cool.
- Only 24% have or plan to install a smart or programmable thermostat for the first time and only 10% plan to install a home energy monitor to see what’s using energy in their home.
- 45% of those surveyed didn’t know if their utility offers rebates or free home assessments for smart thermostats or air conditioning upgrades.
- Only 1 out of 5 Americans can estimate very accurately how much air conditioning contributes to their total utility costs. Another fifth of respondents (22%) believe their estimates are not at all accurate and the remainder could only estimate somewhat accurately.