Electric home heating question

what's best way to use to use electric heat.. 1. set thermostate and leave it the same in all rooms at all times. 2. change controls up and down if not at home 3. close some rooms doors that's not in use, and set heat at a lower temp. 4. other suggestions................................. thanks
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Get yourself a decent programmable thermostat. Setting the thermostat at a constant temperature will assure even heat throughout the house. If you turn the heat off in the day time during the winter, the money you saved will be gone again as the heaters will have to heat everything in the house again to bring it up to liveable temperature. this also promotes mold and mildew plus condensation. Closing doors and turning down the heat does very little to save money. If the room is cold the heater has to work just as hard to keep the set temperature. Do not waste hot water if you have an electric water heater and set it to 130 degrees, wrap the heater with fiberglass pink insulation and stretch wrap, make sure all drafts, cracks around doors and windows are fixed. A $5 dollar tube of caulking can save big bucks in a short time. If the windows are not sealed units, buy the type of 6ml plastic with two face tape and use a hair dryer to tighten the plastic. Pray for a mild winter goodluck dp

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"Get yourself a decent programmable thermostat. Setting the thermostat at a constant temperature will assure even heat throughout the house. If you turn the heat off in the day time during the winter, the money you saved will be gone again as the heaters will have to heat everything in the house again to bring it up to liveable temperature. this also promotes mold and mildew plus condensation. "
Hmmm, last time I checked, the function of a programmable thermostat was to turn the temp down so that you could save heat at times when you either aren;t there (day while at work) or don't need it (when asleep) So, which are you advocating, constant temp or using a programable thermostat? Sounds like you are conflicted to me.
"Closing doors and turning down the heat does very little to save money. If the room is cold the heater has to work just as hard to keep the set temperature. "
Totally false. If you can close off heat to unused areas or turn down the heat, there is no question you will save significant amounts of energy.
Setting the temp down to say 63 at night and even lower while away, can save a significant amount of heat. Yes, the system has to run more for awhile to put back the energy depleted as the temp goes to the lower setting. But that amount is about the same as the amount of energy saved as the house temp lowered initially and the system didn;t run at all.. The savings are basicly in the fact that at the lower temps, less heat is lost from the house. The amount of heat loss is roughly proportional to the difference in temp between inside and out. So as soon as the temp starts to drop, you are saving energy.
The only exception where you might not save would be systems like a heat pump with electric as auxilliary. If the setback temp is too low and the recovery period too short, then the aux heat from the typically more expensive electric might kick in.
Do not waste hot water if you have an electric water heater and set it to 130 degrees, wrap the heater with fiberglass pink insulation and stretch wrap, make sure all drafts, cracks around doors and windows are fixed. A $5 dollar tube of caulking can save big bucks in a short time. If the windows are not sealed units, buy the type of 6ml plastic with two face tape and use a hair dryer to tighten the plastic. Pray for a mild winter goodluck dp
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The programmable thermostat would save money, it's function is self explanatory.
Yes closing doors will save money, perhaps you'd recommend that pepper take up residence in a crawl space under the stairs with a portable heater,she/he could save a bundle this winter but at a cost of damaging the home with mold and mildew not to mention the health risks if children are living there. I agree on the points that keeping a vigil on the thermostat while home, away or in bed is important. I would like to also point out that slippers, sweathers or other warm garments can also save money on heating costs. IMO Setting the room temperature to low and closing the door for long periods, will cause condensation to form if the door is opened and then closed again if the differential is greater than roughly 25 degrees on the other side. Removing the window casings and inject expandable foam will also help along with increasing the R value in the attic. There are many ways to cut down during the winter months a few others are installing a plastic restricter in the faucet to cut down on hot water consumption, cutting back on showers for baths, washing a full load of clothes instead of a half load, same with dish washer but switch to econo clean and pre rinse dishes, keep the heat turned up comfortably in the basement turned down lower upstairs, if the floor is cold upstairs- so will you be(heat rises). Change light bulbs to lower wattage and shut them off when not in use. Cut back on the usage of large appliances that suck up electricity. Plan out meals and cook foods that do not require long cooking times. A toaster oven is cheaper to run than a stove. Don't use plug in air fresheners and turn off the tv if you are not in the room. I hope some of this advice may help dp
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In most cases, we are probalylooking at a 10 degree differential.

Where does the heat from the high wattage bulbs go? Intot he room that yow ant to heat anyway. YOu'd be right for AC, not for heating.

Wrong. The heat from the oven heats the house. Nothing is lost in the winter. .
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a stove wired for 220 volt draws a lot of amps, you might get heat but would you wire up 5 or 6 stoves and turn them on to heat your home?
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That is essentially what electric baseboard heat is, a bunch of elements, similar to stoves.
That stove on 220 is using a certain amount of watts to make heat to cook. It costs the same no matter it be 220 or 110 volts, it is the watts that you are paying for.
That heat is contained in the oven for roasting, but eventually finds it way out to the rest of the house and adds to the heat load, just like a boiler, furnace, etc would do. There is no added cost to running a big oven than a small toaster oven during times that you are heating the house. Only time there is a small difference is when it would be cheaper to burn gas in a boiler compared tot he cost of electric from any source, be it an electric furnace, space heater, or the oven.
So, back to your tip of using a toaster oven. It makes no difference, nada, zip, zilch, Heat is heat, no matter the source. Your tip would make sense if you are paying to cool the house as the oven makes more heat and has to be removed. If you are adding heat to the house anyway, take advantage of any source you have. Keep in mind though, that an oven is better insulated than a toaster oven so it may take less total watts (Btu) to cook that roast compared to a non-insulated unit that must heat more to maintain internal temperature due to losses during the cooking time. I have never run tests so I cannot say for certain.
--
Ed
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Most people pay for watt-hours of energy vs watts of power.

Btus are also energy, so they can't be compared to watts.
Nick
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As Ed and others have pointed out, dp is basically off his rocker here.
You have electric heat, and presumably an electric stove and an electric water heater. You have electric lights, electric television, electric radio, electric water heater, electric air fresheners, basically electric everything. And here is the crux of the matter: any electricity you use (with one very minor exception, and one slightly larger exception) is being used to heat your house with near 100% efficiency (that is, almost all of the energy in the electricity is converted eventually to heat).
The two exceptions are: (negligible) If any sound is leaking from your house, then the energy contained in that sound isn't getting transfered to your house, but instead is getting transferred to the trees, air, and grass outside your house. But sound at the levels that are hopefully found in your house contains almost no energy at all -- otherwise you'd be able to feel the warmth of your radio's music, after all. (slightly larger exception) The water that goes out the drain pipes is sometimes warm, and so carries heat out of your house. So your concern should not so much be to save hot water because heating water costs electricity, but simply to avoid situations where hot water is going directly down into the sewers or septic tank. Even in a very long shower, if you actually went and felt the water as it leaves the house, it would be pretty cool. A long shower might use a lot of hot water, but that heat finds its way into your bathroom, your bathtub, the supply and drain pipes, your basement or crawlspace, etc., and very little of it actually leaves your house.
All of dp's suggestions for the kitchen are bogus (in the winter). My wife cooks a lot of bread in the winter -- it warms up the kitchen, tastes great, and is a actually, technically, a teeny bit more efficient than our furnace (there is no chimney/flue loss, at the cost of having to breath the byproducts of combustion).
So go ahead and make soup, bread, and whatever else you want. Hell, go ahead and leave the oven door open a crack if you like too. Besides, with a nice warm kitchen and a bowl of hot soup, you might feel comfortable setting your heat down a few more degrees in the rest of the house. Go ahead and leave the TV on if you like (in the winter) too, and feel free to use all the plug-in air fresheners your heart desires, and change out those efficient floursecent lights for ultra-high wattage incandescents if that is what you want to do (in winter).
In summary: the nice part about electric heat is that it is such a stupid way to heat a house that you can't possibly lose out -- most anything else you do in your house can't possibly be more expensive than electric heat.
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And another exception: Anything at a temperature above absolute zero (and that includes heating elements) is emitting electromagnetic radiation (just some of which is visible light). Much (but not all) of this will eventually be converted to heat.
This explains how electric heating is NOT 100% efficient.
[snip]
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10 days until the winter solstice celebration

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Yup, your right for sure. It is only _near_ 100% efficient. I don't have any numbers, but I'd be surprised if it were more than 1 part in 1000 that was lost.
For one, any light that leaves the furnace/oven/lights/radio/etc. and then escapes your house is carrying away a tiny bit of energy. I suppose it is plausible that there are other forms of energy radiating away too -- tiny bits of energy all across the spectrum (radio, microwave, etc.) , I would suppose, although certainly all of these other forms add up to zero to a good first (and second) approximation. I haven't been in a physics class in a few years, and was never that great at it. Maybe someone else here knows.
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Thinking of light from heaters, I seem to remember hearing about when electron tubes were invented, people said they weren't good for anything. They weren't even good lamps.
People saying heaters are 100% efficient did bother me some. 100% sounds like a form of perfection, and such things are obviously nonexistent.
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9 days until the winter solstice celebration

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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote: <snip, said...it costs more to re-heat the house oppossed to leaving heat on>
it's been proven, it is cheaper to rollercoast the temps, it doesn't cost more to reheat the house
on the low, take it down about 3 deg, even better when the sun is out
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dp wrote:

???? What's the point of the programmable thermostat?

With electric heat, unless you pay a time of day rate penalty, any amount of time you turn it temperature down will save money. While you will use energy to re-heat the home, it will never be as much as keeping the home warm. You pay for BTU's Sort of Buckets of heat. The heat leaks out and you pay to replace it. When the difference between inside and outside is the same, you loose no buckets, when the difference is a lot you loose a lot of buckets per hour, but in-between you loose less per hour and you don't need to replace them.
I seriously doubt you will suffer any mold or mildew due to reduced temperatures and fact likely less. Condensation will depend. Generally it is not a problem.

Dead wrong! Do close off rooms to save energy. However do watch going too cold. You don't want to allow temperatures to go below freezing where pipes run. Most newer homes don't have much of a problem, but some older homes may have pipes running close to outside walls and may be enclosed in cabinets. You don't want them to get too cold.

I can go along with everything in the two above paragraphs.

--
Joseph Meehan

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is what I meant to say, misinterpreted it as turning "OFF" the heat and closing the door. I agree 100% Although having too little heat does not help the cause either.

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???? What's the point of the programmable thermostat?
programming the times you are going to bed, waking up, going to work, coming home.
Thats' if you have one of couse. There is no point if you don't.

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