We have our electric plan set up where we have a higher rate for 12pm - 7pm peak hours and a lower rate for 7pm - 12 on off peak hours. Since we're away at work during the day I bump up the thermostat so the cooler doesn't run as much.
Is there a point where too much of an increase isn't energy efficient? Say I bump it up to 85, then our air had to catch up a ton when we get home. I'm not sure what a good happy medium is. I'm in the desert in Rizona, so our summers will average around 105 during the day.
You don't have a problem with humidity so you can get away with that. If you were in a humid climate then the AC works better if it runs continuos to remove the humidity as the indoor coil is cooler when the machine is not working full load and can remove more humidity. I don't like running any machine full blast to catch up as it draws more power the hotter it is outside and fully loaded but if it can cool the house to a comfortable point with your method then go for it. If it is cooler in the evening and you don,t mind coming home to a hot house then it is cheaper to run then. I would not go over 80 as the most a AC can drop the air temp is 16-20F.
"Cut it twice and it is still too short".