All across America, there’s a source of marital problem that is being recognized only now. It’s an issue that could raise temperatures between couples, and might even plunge their relationship closer to freezing point. It’s thermostat control.
Couples may be on the best of terms, hold similar views about politics, have the same preferences in food and almost everything else. But when it comes to home temperature, the hubby may be comfortable with a balmy 24 degrees Celsius, while the wife insists on cranking it down to 21.
Usually, it’s the wife who wins, but the tension persists.
According to a recent survey by manufacturer Honeywell, 30 percent of respondents admit they never agree with their housemates about temperature, and 27 percent say they change the settings without the others’ knowledge, Reuters reports.
That makes the thermostat a bigger issue than another household flashpoint, control of the TV remote, which has been cited by 16 percent of the respondents as a frequent source of disagreement.
Those in the 18-34 age bracket are more likely to disagree with their housemates on temperature, with 39 percent changing the temperature dial on the sly.
Experts say thermostat wars may not be only about the comfort of individuals at home. It could also be about decision-making and the household budget.
“Make sure you’re arguing about the right thing,” financial planner Mary Claire Allvine was quoted as saying. “You might be arguing about temperature, when it really comes down to stress about bills and cash flow.”
And savings from lower energy use can be significant. According to the California Energy Commission’s Consumer Energy Center, raising the thermostat by just one degree above 22 will mean cutting the energy bill by 1 to 3 percent during summer.
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