When the weather is cooling off, you are probably concerned about how you’ll make the most of your heating and cooling. After all, HVAC bills can add up to a big portion of your monthly electric bill. To figure out new ways to lower their HVAC bill, some people look closer at their thermostat. Is there a setting they should use to increase efficiency?

Most thermostats come with a ‘Fan’ or ‘Fan On’ setting. But if the fan is on during a normal cycle, what will the fan setting provide for your HVAC system? This guide can help. We’ll review just what the fan setting is and how you can use it to reduce costs in the summer or winter.

What Is the Fan Setting on My Thermostat?

For the majority of thermostats, the fan setting signifies that the HVAC blower fan stays on. A few furnaces may continue to generate heat at a low level in this setting, but in general heating or cooling isn’t being produced. The ‘Auto’ setting, in contrast, will run the fan during a heating or cooling cycle and shut it off when the cycle is over.

There are benefits and drawbacks to switching on the fan setting on your thermostat, and what’s ideal {will|can|should]] depend on your personal comfort preferences.

Advantages to switching to the Fan/On setting:

  • You can keep the temperature in each room more uniform by allowing the fan to keep generating airflow.
  • Indoor air quality should improve since continuous airflow will keep passing airborne contaminants into the air filter.
  • A smaller amount of start-stop cycles for the HVAC fan helps lengthen its life span. Since the air handler is usually part of the furnace, this means you might prevent the need for furnace repair.

Disadvantages to utilizing the Fan/On setting:

  • A continuous fan can add to your energy expenses slightly.
  • Constant airflow may clog your air filter in a shorter amount of time, increasing the frequency you’ll need to replace it.

{Choosing Between|Should My Thermostat Be on|Which Setting for My Thermostat? Fan or Auto in Each Season

During the summer, warm air will sometimes linger in unfinished spaces like the attic or an attached garage. If you use the fan setting, your HVAC system can pull this warm air into the rest of your home, compelling the HVAC system to work harder to keep up with the preferred temperature. In serious heat, this could lead to needing AC repair more quickly as wear and tear gets worse.

The opposite can take place during the winter. Cooler spaces like a basement will hold onto cooler air, which can eventually drift into the rest of your home. Keeping the fan on may pump more cold air upward, increasing the amount of heating you need to remain warm.

If you’re still trying to figure out if you should use the fan/on setting, keep in mind that every home and family’s comfort needs will vary. Leaving the HVAC system’s fan on could work for you if:

Someone in your household deals with allergies. Allergies and similar respiratory conditions can be tough on the family. Leaving the fan on should help to improve indoor air quality, helping your family breathe easier.

Your home deals with hot and cold spots. Many homes wrestle with difficult hot and cold spots that quickly evolve to a temperature different from the rest of the house. The fan setting should help minimize these changes by consistently refreshing each room’s airflow.