Thermostat Control A Hot Button Issue In Alberta Homes

 CALGARY, Alberta, June 23, 2014 /CNW/ -- Albertans are hot under the collar  when it comes to indoor temperature according to a Direct Energy survey. The  results of the survey released today show that one in five (17 per cent)  Alberta households cannot agree what temperature the thermostat should be set  to. In fact, of the options Albertans were given, "thermostat wars" are the  third most common household dispute with 20 per cent indicating they have  argued or disagreed about it. Only disputes about the control of the  television remote (24 per cent) and cleaning the toilet (23 per cent) were  more common. Not only are Albertans who share a thermostat disagreeing on the  temperature, some are sneaky about it -- 14 per cent admit they've changed the  temperature when their partner isn't looking.  "With hot summer weather having finally arrived, it's common for Albertans to  bicker over the temperature the thermostat is set to in their homes," said  Dave Walton, Director of Home Ideas for Direct Energy. "With energy prices on  the rise, it's important for households to come to an agreement on temperature  now.  Albertans should also remember that setting the thermostat to a lower  temperature is just one way of keeping the house cool and should be taking  advantage of other easy methods to stay comfortable and save money this  summer."  The Direct Energy survey found nearly half (44 per cent) of Albertans who  share a thermostat say they want to be the one in control of the thermostat  because they're concerned about energy costs. However, 95 per cent of  Albertans are setting the thermostat at 23 degrees Celsius or less, which  could end up costing them this summer. In fact, for every degree Celsius below  25 degrees will add an extra three to five per cent to an energy bill.  "When the mercury rises, conflicts around home temperature don't have to,"  said Walton. "There are many ways to stay cool during the summer heat while  still saving money. From small changes to larger upgrades, Albertans can take  control of their energy bills."  There are many ways to help reduce conflict around the thermostat, many of  which homeowners can implement themselves. Here are a few tips from Direct  Energy:        --  Install a programmable thermostat. Set the times and         temperatures to match your schedule. Also, consider setting the         thermostat to turn off your air conditioner at night when the         outdoor temperature cools down. Better yet, consider installing         a "smart" thermostat. These devices will begin to adjust your         home's temperature after learning your cooling habits.     --  Use ceiling fans to circulate cool air. Fan blades should         operate in a counter-clockwise direction in the summer to move         the air downwards and maximize cool air circulation so your air         conditioner doesn't have to work as hard. Ceiling fans can be         just pennies a day to operate and are great for cooling down         the room they operate in.     --  Replace furnace filters every three months. This will help your         air conditioner run more efficiently. Clogged filters mean that         furnace motors must work harder and use more energy.     --  Close the curtains and drapes. Before you leave the house for         work in the morning, remember to close the curtains and drapes,         especially on south and west facing windows. This will help         block out the high summer sun and stop the home from getting         too hot inside.     --  Give your AC unit some shade. Without blocking airflow, plant a         small tree or shrubs around your air conditioning unit. A         shaded unit uses up to five per cent less electricity than it         would in the sun. Try to maintain at least 24 inches of         clearance around your outdoor AC unit from any landscaping.  Additional survey findings:     --  18 per cent of Albertans who share a thermostat say their         children influence their energy consumption behavior     --  Five per cent of Albertans claim their children usually change         the thermostat without their approval     --  61 per cent of Albertans say that when it comes to deciding the         temperature for the house, being comfortable is more important         than saving money     --  One in five (20 per cent) Albertans want the temperature in the         house to be cooler than others in their household  About Direct Energy  Direct Energy is North America's largest provider of heating & cooling,  plumbing and electrical services and a leading energy and energy-related  services provider with over six million residential and commercial customer  relationships. Direct Energy provides customers with choice and support in  managing their energy costs through a portfolio of innovative products and  services. A subsidiary of Centrica plc (LSE: CNA), one of the world's leading  integrated energy companies, Direct Energy operates in 46 U.S. states plus the  District of Columbia and 10 provinces in Canada. To learn more about Direct  Energy, please visit  About the survey  From April 30(th) to May 1(st) 2014 an online survey was conducted among 617  randomly selected adult Alberta residents who are Angus Reid Forum panelists  and who share a thermostat with others in their household. The margin of  error--which measures sampling variability--is +/- 4.0%, 19 times out of 20.  The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current  age, gender and region Census data to ensure a sample representative of the  entire adult population of Alberta. Discrepancies in or between totals are due  to rounding.  For further information on home energy efficiency tips or to book an interview  with Dave Walton, please contact:    Jeff Lanthier Direct Energy 905-943-6260  Kelly Ornelas or Becky Brescacin High Road Communications for Direct Energy or 416-644-2235 or  416-644-1398  Logo -    SOURCE  Direct Energy  CO: Direct Energy ST: Canada NI: UTI OIL HOU ECOSURV  
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