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What is the ideal room temperature?

man touching thermostat on the wall

What you'll learn

  • Introduction to room temperature
  • How to heat different rooms
  • What is the ideal room temperature in winter and summer?
  • How to heat a home economically
  • Recommended room temperature for different scenarios

Introduction to room temperature

For members of the same household, it's common to prefer different room temperatures. The room temperature can be affected by factors such as air humidity, clothing worn and levels of physical activity. These can all affect a person’s thermal comfort and therefore change their preferred room temperature. Air humidity is particularly impactful as the higher the humidity, the lower the room temperature needs to be.

Achieving the right temperature for your home is crucial for a number of reasons. Physical comfort should be a priority. Being too warm can impact your ability to concentrate, whilst being too cold may increase your risk of illnesses. More information on how to take care of yourself and others during the colder months is available on the NHS website.

Cost of central heating may also be a significant factor to consider when choosing the appropriate room temperature.

If you are worried about your energy bills rising, you can find helpful resources on the Citizens Advice website. We also recommend seeking support through the NHS website or heating and housing benefits on GOV.UK.

How to heat different rooms

The average room temperature is typically around 20°C . This is a good ambient temperature, but you may wish to heat rooms to different temperatures to suit your individual needs. By setting your thermostat between 18-21°C, it is most cost effective and can reduce your environmental footprint.

Heating controls and thermostats allow you to schedule your home - especially if you are regularly out of the home.

The temperature of living rooms and home offices is usually set at 20-22°C since these spaces are where people are most likely to spend their time. To lessen your environmental impact, consider lowering the room temperature or scheduling your heating.

Rooms such as kitchens typically experience high activity levels, so they can be kept at lower temperatures.

Bathrooms are usually heated to around 20 to 22°C to ensure a comfortable temperature after showering. However, to reduce your carbon footprint, consider reducing the temperature to reduce your environmental impact and your heating bills.

Bedrooms should be relatively cooler, between 16 and 19°C . Our body temperature decreases during sleep and a cold room can help maintain our internal temperature regulation. Children’s bedrooms should be slightly warmer, around 16-20°C, depending on their age.

Any spaces where people spend less, such as corridors, laundry rooms and lofts, can be cooler than normal living spaces. Aiming for temperatures between 15 to 18°C could also help you save on your heating bills.

We appreciate that it may be difficult to change individual room temperatures for most people. Smart controls such as the sensoCOMFORT paired with thermostatic radiator valves (TRVs) manage the temperature on a room-by-room basis. Scheduling your heating can help your home be comfortably heated, whilst also improving your carbon footprint and reducing energy bills.

Typical temperature for different rooms

Typical temperature
Living room20°C - 22°C
Bedroom16°C - 19°C
Office20°C - 22°C
Children's bedroom16°C- 20°C
Enterance15°C - 18°C
Corridor15°C - 18°C
Bathroom20°C - 22°C
Kitchen18°C - 20°C

What is the ideal room temperature in winter and summer?

two people sat on a sofa and thermostat blurred out on the wall

A comfortable room temperature for most people is usually between 18-20 °C, however it largely depends on the individual. Whatever the season, it is recommended that you use a thermostat to monitor how the temperature fluctuates throughout the day.

The cold weather usually means it is difficult and more costly to maintain this temperature in the home. There are several ways in which you can prepare your home to be more energy efficient during the winter months. These include investing in upgrades to improve efficiency, and using soft furnishings to keep heat within the home.

In summer, the challenge will often be dropping the temperature down to 18-20 °C. We recommend opening windows to keep humidity low, and using thinner duvets to achieve a good night’s sleep.

How to heat a home economically

Heating a home is a significant monthly outgoing for households, particularly in the colder months. It, therefore, stands to reason that we should seek out ways to heat our home in a more cost-efficient way.

Many people try to achieve this by reducing their central heating system overnight, or turning it off completely in unused rooms. While this can reduce costs quite significantly in the short-term, they eventually encounter several problems.

  • Mold build-up

    Firstly, a home that is too cold risks mold build-up. This is because cold air transports less water vapour condensing on windows and walls. Not only is mold unpleasant to deal with, but it can also cause health issues if left untreated. Moreover, it can also be damaging to the property and cost significant amounts to remove.
  • Improve efficiency

    Secondly, reducing central heating in this way makes your gas boiler work harder to achieve your ambient temperature, using more fuel. While this is cheaper than leaving your heating on low all the time, there are better ways to improve efficiency.
  • Insulation

    Upgrading your homes insulation, glazing, or draught proofing can help you save on heating bills. One of the best ways to manage your homes heating is by using periphery devices such as smart thermostats and TRVs.
  • Controls and thermostats

    Smart controls allow you to schedule your home's heating to suit your routine. Controls such as myVAILLANT connect, paired with our range of thermostats (sensoHOME, sensoCOMFORT, sensoROOM and sensoROOM pure) can help control your home's heat whilst you’re away. Meanwhile, thermostatic radiator valves (TRVs) can help control your heating room by room to maximise the comfort for each room.This can help give you more control over when you use energy, and how much, saving you money in the process.

Other questions

  • What is the ideal room temperature during pregnancy?

    According to the NHS, many women report feeling hotter during pregnancy. Whilst there is no set ideal temperature, we would recommend finding a temperature that is comfortable for you. If you are concerned about the heating in your home during pregnancy, speak to a medical professional.

  • What is the ideal room temperature for babies and children?

    Given their age, babies and young children are less able to regulate their own body temperature. Therefore, it's important to use central heating to keep them comfortable.

    The NHS recommends that the room temperature for a sleeping baby should sit around 16–20°C. The Lullaby Trust advises using a room thermometer to monitor your baby's room.

    Similarly, the NHS advises to keep a child's bedroom well ventilated and at a temperature between 16–20°C.

    Make sure to regularly check the temperature of the room, and consult a medical professional.

  • What is the ideal room temperature for the elderly?

    The CDC advises that mature adults are more sensitive to temperature changes either hot or cold weather or indoor temperature changes. The NHS recommends heating your home to at least 18 °C if you are elderly, not very mobile, or have a health condition. You may also with to use either a hot water bottle or electric blanket to keep warm in bed.

    The NHS also recommends that you draw curtains at dusk and keep doors closed to avoid draughts. It is also important to maintain your heating system with annual servicing by a qualified installer.

  • What is the ideal room temperature for pets?

    There are many factors that influence the ambient room temperature for your pet. Size, weight, age, health, coat type, breed - all these factors play a part in deciding a pet’s thermal comfort level.

    Furthermore, PDSA explains that pets are prone to overheating and losing heat, therefore it is important to monitor their temperature. In hot weather, the charity advises to look out for signs of heatstroke and contact a vet if needed. Read more professional advice on how to look after your pet in hot temperatures at RSPCA’s website.

    During colder periods, your pet's body temperature is more likely to drop. Therefore, PDSA suggests preparing extra blankets and keeping central heating on for longer overnight during the winter months. If you are concerned about the heating in your home for your pet’s safety and wellbeing, speak to your vet.


  • The ideal room temperature is different for every person, and changes depending on humidity, clothing and activity levels.
  • We recommend aiming for an average room temperature of 20°C, with the bedroom slightly cooler and the bathroom slightly warmer.
  • Invest in a digital thermostat to better track and manage your home’s temperature wherever you are.