What are your thoughts on restricting thermostat settings?

What are your thoughts on restricting thermostat settings?

I live in Central California where temperatures can reach 100+ and my guests have their own AC and thermostat. Lately my guests have been extremely inconsiderate and turning the AC to 68 and leaving the unit vacant, thankfully I have a Nest thermostat that goes into Eco mode when no movement is detected.

 

What are your thoughts on limiting the thermostat to 74 or 75? I also have a ceiling fan in the room for those who require additional circulation. 

 

Thanks in advance! 

49 Replies 49
Branka-and-Silvia0
Level 10
Zagreb, Croatia

@Frank-and-Jesse0I totaly agree with you. I think it is the metter of spoiled habit, nothing else.For example if you wear sun glasses constantly then you can't go out without them any more . Your eyes are not used to the sun . If you quit wearing them , after some time you will not need them any more. The same is with AC... your body gets used to a certain temperature and loses the ability to adjust.

 

For example I would turn on AC only if daily temperature in a shade is above 35 C and I set it at my home on 28 C (82 F) for a few hours and then turn off.  I wear summer clothes , use window blinds, ventilator, keep windows open during the night  ... in other words I do what our parents have done long before AC was invented (and survived)

And yes, I installed AC just few years ago when my hot splashes become unbareable . When I was younger we didn't have it and I was also camping and slept in a tent under the tree without any problem in a middle of summer 🙂

Nest thermostat is great idea and my opinion is 75F / 24 C is ok min. temp. (we often find heating thermostat set on 25C or even 30 in the middle of winter! )

It's worth noting that if it is a window AC unit the most it can use is 1500w, so maybe 15-25c an hour. $2-3 a day ish. The problem starts when you have an area larger than it can cool, or you need multiple. 

 

We provide two electric heaters, and they would be doing $5-6 a day max out which starts to add up 😞

Lorraine132
Level 3
Los Angeles, CA

I’m going to lock up the thermostat. So cal heatwave, no 70* is not ok! 

 

 

Bruna-and-Siana0
Level 10
Santa Clara, CA

We are in northern California and most of our guests set up the thermostat 70-75. We have a note that says that 75 is the best temperature but we don't want to enforce it. I feel if you don't allow to set it lower than 75 you might anoy guests, which will probably be reflected in a bad review.

 We've been monitoring power consumption and it turns out that there is no much difference between 70 and 75 if the AC is efficient. Electricity in US is pretty cheap. You can also add a few $ to the nightlhy price and done. 

It's now 2023 and in texas the electricity has increased 35%.  It's definitely different now.

David4394
Level 2
Mountain View, CA

I was looking for a solution this same problem because my AC bill was high in the summer and heating bill was also high in the winter (over $500 per month).  My cleaners don't always turn off the heating and AC and I can't always remind them.  I have been using Neome (https://www.neome.co/) which automatically turns off the AC/heat at check-out time and also limits the min and max temperature.  I've seen about ~$40 savings over the summer months.  No data on the winter months yet

Alistair27
Level 2
Playa del Carmen, Mexico

I have the same issue here in Mexico as electrical power here is very expensive and  I enjoyed reading the Australian comments as I am from Brisbane. I have also been frustrated with apparent disregard  guests have for proper AC use and also leaving everything on when they leave thinking " I paid for this , so I will use it" attitude. Aside from the environmental concerns, they are indirectly increasing the rental costs for other guests.

One thing I have found seems to work quite well is the asking them to shut everything off at the circuit breaker board that is inside each apartment. I put tape over circuit that needs to be left on for the fridge, and for some reason this is more effective than reminding them to separately turn off the AC , lights, overhead fans. I am unsure as yet if turning off AC units that way can ultimately damage the units, but they seem to be fine at the moment.

The other thing is educating guests regarding the 'DRY' setting. As humidity is the issue, this setting works as a dehumidifier. Supposedly it is more efficient. I personally use it myself quite a lot , and with an overhead fan many guests have been happy to use it in conjunction with the COOL mode.

Regarding guests putting the temp setting down to the lowest 16deg C is annoying and unnecessary. Guests think that the room will cool down quicker if set as low as possible , which is simply untrue. I tell guests that setting the units at 16 deg C will cause them to freeze and will stop working ( or spit water out of the units) due to the seasonal humidity . In the House Manual I have written that "appropriate thermostat control for AC is required" . Then follow it up with an introduction message stating setting the AC units at a temperature less than 20 deg C is not permitted and a recommended setting is 22 to 25 degC and to use the SLEEP setting at night. So far, no guests have complained.

That Nest thermostat system sounds like a good idea that I will look into.

@Alistair27  Most of my friends who have AC here in Mexico have actually put in solar power, as it was just too expensive to run without it. Electricity is actually amazingly cheap in Mexico if you stay under the first and second KWH rate tiers. I don't have AC myself, just fans, and my electric bills are about $8-10/month! But once you get into that upper tier, the rate quadruples and the bills become huge.

And you're quite right about the humidity- I almost wonder if you could cool places here only using dehumidifiers. I buy these jars of moisture-absorbing beads, made of calcium chloride, that I use in containers of linens, small tupperware containers in which I keep small electronics, like remotes, and a box with important paperwork. When I open that big jar to scoop out some of those beads, it actually feels like a fridge in that jar, even when it's super hot out. So the humidity has a very large effect on the perceived temperature.

Pete69
Level 10
Los Angeles, CA

I have in my rules that guests must turn off any appliances when away from my guest suite. I had one guest totally ignore this rule. I emailed them. They continued to ignore. After this guest I looked into devices that can shut off the AC.

Here's a great option that allows you to shut off the AC with your smart phone. AC must be able to run off of a remote control: https://www.amazon.com/atomi-Conditioner-Thermometer-Monitoring-temperature/dp/B07MZ6BHMZ/ref=sr_1_4...

This device uses infrared technology to shut off AC units (that run off of remote control). If someone leaves the room for a period of time then it shuts off the AC. Although it's about $100 plus DHL shipping from Italy. https://www.aervirdis.it/praesentia-sensore-presenza-spegni-condizionatori-con-stanza-vuota/

 

Sara745
Level 2
Fort Worth, TX

We have long term guests.  They are scheduled to be here until September.  We are in Texas and yes, it is hot.  The husband arrived first, in March.  The wife recently joined him and now the Nest has been completely reprogrammed and set to run at 66 degrees 24/7.  Our house rules ask that guests set the thermostat no lower than 68 (due to concerns of unit freezing) and to adjust it to 76 when they leave the house.  Our guest now tells us his wife has an auto immune disease that requires her to keep the house so cold.  We have ceiling fans in the house as well as two stand alone fans.  We have asked several times for them to set the AC to 68  and to adjust it when they leave.  24 hours after our last request, which again was ignored, we locked the Nest and set the temperature to 68.  The husband then messaged us and said we could not dictate what a comfortable temperature was for them.  And that we should be thankful to have guests during Covid.  Very frustrated....  Any suggestions?

 

We will be purchasing thermostats so we can control settings/temps. We've had several guests set Air to 62 and cause systems to run consistently. Inconsiderate for sure. 

What controllable thermostats do you recommend? I've researched the Nest and Ecobee. I want to make sure the guests won't be able to override our settings. Will that require a locked casing over the mounted thermostat? 

Thank you for your time in responding! 

Debra300
Top Contributor
Gros Islet, Saint Lucia

@Joey-And-Jacqueline0,

If you're looking for more than user experiences, it's best to gather your product information from the manufacturer's sources.  I did a quick look online, and at the Nest website, it clearly displays how the temperature settings can be managed through the app, and Ecobee has a toll-free sales support phone number.

You should ask people who literally can't sleep unless it's under 70. I think it's either 69 or 70 at my current airbnb and I can't sleep. Kinda feel like leaving a not positive review but I'll ask about it tomorrow. It's 3am, still no sleep. 

Jennifer1897
Level 10
Irvine, CA

@Frank-and-Jesse0 I can completely understand your concerns as two listings I have are in the Hanford area. The last week has been an average of 105.  I work 0530-1700 and I noticed guest were setting the temp between 65-68 and leaving for 6+ hours a day. Even though there is a nice reminder on the door to adjust the ac or turn it off if you are departing for the day,.  Like you I was frustrated because it's a complete waste of energy and costs are rising. I set a minimum of 70 and I also have times in which it is set to automatically go up to 78. If the guest is still there they can adjust it, however if not, it doesn't run for hours with no one present.

Do you have any idea how long it takes for a three bedroom house to cool down with a 100° temperature outside, when the thermostat is set at 78°? Depending on the house, it can take anywhere from 3 hours to 5 hours. You are not saving any money, you are actually losing money, and putting tremendous strain on your AC unit.  I know guest can be inconsiderate, but in my mind having a cool, healthy house to come back to for guests, is going to get you repeat guest. My husband and I are experiencing this situation right now. We set the thermostat at 73°. By the time we get back from being out during the day the thermostat is set back at 82° and it is stifling hot in the house we are renting. That is absolutely ridiculous when you’re PAYING to stay in a home.  It makes the evening miserable, and for those of us that have issues, like asthma, unbearable. I will not ever return to this particular home. If the homeowners of Airbnb‘s are so concerned about paying an extra $10-$15  for air conditioning to make their homes comfortable and inviting for their guests they should charge more for your home per night.  ~ and again you’re not saving any money, you’re losing money in many ways and you’ll also lose your HVAC sooner than later. Christy