Question: 
What is the best way to conserve energy at my home or business? Leave the A/C on and turn up the thermostat, or turn it off when we are away? 

Answer: 
Whenever you turn off your A/C or raise the thermostat, you’ll always save money. Even if your cooling system has to play “catch up” in the morning or evening -when you bring the temperature back down, it is still more economical than keeping an unoccupied building cool all night long. 
Comfort level 
It’s unpleasant to come into a warm and stuffy home or building first thing in the morning or after work. If the A/C is kept off until the day begins, it could take a while to get the temperature to a level that’s comfortable for guests,employees and customers. We recommend turning down the A/C early enough to achieve a cool comfort level by the time employees arrive in the morning. Programmable thermostats can help you do this. In terms of how long it might take you to cool down your home or building. Every home or office is different due to its size, equipment and cooling system. As a general rule, try turning the A/C on 30 minutes before you open your home or business. 
In hotter months, your A/C can run up to twice as long as it does in cooler months. That’s because as the days get longer and hotter, the cooling system in your business needs to run longer to keep employees and customers comfortable. Additionally, it’s normal for your A/C to run longer in the morning or evening if you had the thermostat raised to a higher temperature or turned off while away. 
Other cooling & savings tips 
Because air conditioning is a top contributor to your energy costs, we suggest keeping your thermostat set to 78 degrees during the day, when the building is in use. During the summer months, your cooling system needs all the help it can get to keep the heat out and your electric bills low. 
Don’t forget something as simple as closing shades and blinds to keep out the sun’s rays. To save energy even further, consider installing window tinting on any windows with a westerly exposure, as they let in direct sunlight at the hottest time of the day. View our other top savings tips. 
We hope you found this Energy Answer column helpful. If you have an energy-related question pertaining to your business, just submit your question. Or, get personalized energy advice by scheduling a free FPL Business Energy Evaluation