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Is it OK to Switch Between AC and Heat During the Fall?

October 20, 2023 – Warm fall days can turn chilly once the sun goes down—enough that you might be tempted to run your air conditioning during the day and then turn on the heat at night.

If it’s hot enough during daylight hours for the AC and cool enough over night for the heat, there’s really no harm in using both on the same day. However, it’s a good idea to ease one system off before switching on the other. Here are a few tips for a good transition:

  • Air conditioning systems run in cycles. Once the house reaches the temperature you have set on your thermostat, it will cycle off. You’ll hear it when that happens. Before you turn your AC off, listen for it to complete its cycle. Short cycling can cause the AC compressor to lock up.
  • Wait five minutes after you turn the AC off before you switch on the heat. This grace period will give the refrigerant in the AC a chance to normalize, which can prevent circuits from tripping if the transition to the heater is too abrupt.
  • Avoid drastic thermostat changes. Once the AC is off, raise the temperature just a few degrees and then wait for the heat to rise to that temperature before raising it anymore. This prevents your heating system from overworking, which is inefficient. 
  • In the morning when it is cool, open the blinds to let the daylight naturally warm rooms but block the sun before it gets too warm, so your air conditioner doesn’t have to work so hard.
  • Anticipate the evening temperature drop and stop running your air conditioner before the weather cools down.
  • Put extra blankets on your bed to feel warmer and try to avoid having to run the heater overnight. If the morning is chilly, wear extra layers and slippers until the temperature warms up.

Farmers Electric Cooperative serves Northeast Texas with safe and reliable power.  With more than 80,000 members, Farmers EC strives to be recognized as an exceptional cooperative by our members, employees, and communities.


Author: Matt Janson

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