Utility cost

We live in central Jersey. The house is built in 1971, 2,400 sq ft four bedroom split. Gas furnace is original. Central AC about 15 year old. We set the thermostat at 82 degrees F during summer for cooling. In winter, we set it to 72 degrees F during the day and turn it down to 59 degrees F after 12. My attic has at least R30 insulation.
We pay PSE&G $212 a month on equal payment, gas and electric.
I'd like to get you guys' opinion whether to update my furnace to a more energy efficient one, in light of the looming sky rocketing energy cost. A good indication would be what a comparable size brand new home pays PSE&G in the same area.
Thanks.
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You have to do some calculating. What part of the cost is gas, what part is electric? What is the present efficiency compared to the new units?
You can definitely save fuel cost, but you have to compute the fuel savings and compare it tot he installed cost of new equipment.
If you do nothing else, get a programmable thermostat with a few settings. I have my heat go on at 6 AM, go to 72 degrees, drop to 68 after two hours (and everyone is awake) and then drop to 60 at 10:00 PM. Just dropping the heat by 2 degrees will save a bit.
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You need more attic insulation you are below minimum code I will bet, and way below what is maximum. Double it. Your furnace may be 70% or lower in efficiency, look into a 94.5% unit. As well your AC is a low seer unit.
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wrote in message ...

Efficiency of existing furnace is unknown, whatever the market sells in 1971.

Maybe I did not make it clear. It is a programmable.
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Yes! The savings will pay for the new A/C in the long run. Also you can beef up your insulation, get "Energy Star": windows, refrigerator, washing machine, dryer, and dish washer.
I can run 3 new window air conditioners for what it cost me to run one older model. It is amazing how much energy new A/C, heating, and appliances can save...
"Yaofeng" wrote in message

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My bills went down dramatically (in half) when I put in double attic insulation, new refrigerator, ridge vent and a new gas water heater, gas furnace and new central AC unit and ceiling fans.
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just out of curiosity, how long is it gonna take to 'pay back' the cost of all these improvements?
randy

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Your old furnace probably had something like a 70% efficieny (if you are lucky) when it was new. Today it's a whole lot less. Same for A/C.
I would fix any air leaks (doors, windows) before I put more insulation in the attic.
I would also use the programmable thermostat to keep the temperatures even lower at night in the winter.
One more thing is you insist on using that old furnace, put the pilot out for the summer.
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Yaofeng:
Y > We live in central Jersey. The house is built in 1971, 2,400 sq ft Y > four bedroom split. Gas furnace is original. Central AC about 15 Y > year old. We set the thermostat at 82 degrees F during summer for Y > cooling. In winter, we set it to 72 degrees F during the day and turn Y > it down to 59 degrees F after 12. My attic has at least R30 Y > insulation. Y > Y > We pay PSE&G $212 a month on equal payment, gas and electric. Y > Y > I'd like to get you guys' opinion whether to update my furnace to a Y > more energy efficient one, in light of the looming sky rocketing Y > energy cost. A good indication would be what a comparable size brand Y > new home pays PSE&G in the same area.
I agree a more current furnace would give you a savings. Also find out if PSE&G is offering rebates (the contractor you are purchasing your furnace and/or central air conditioning from should provide this information).
With the age of both appliances I would suggest replacing both; if not financially possible now allow for the upgrade shortly (i.e. next spring or the following spring). Be sure to tell the representative of any problems such as the living room is aways cold, the bathroom is too hot; replacement of a section of duct or balancing the system should solve these problems.
Comparing what a similar home has for HVAC may or may not be give you what you need: each home has differences affecting what equipment is needed.
Someone suggested a programmable thermostat: I agree, but let the contractor do the installation as part of the package. (The old one here had something like a 6 'knee' -- allowing a heck of a swing in temperature before would kick on and off -- the new electronic thermostat can be set for a 1 knee -- keeps the temperature much more even.)
Other things to help reduce energy: check outlets and switches for leaks. When there is a decent breeze outside feel for air movement by the boxes. If there is there are foam plates that go under the covers available at hardware stores and department -- usually come as a 'kit' of several switch and outlets.
- barry.martinATthesafebbs.zeppole.com
* Some suffer some insanity; I enjoy it!
--
RoseReader 2.52 P003186
The Safe BBS Bettendorf, IA 563-359-1971
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