I need to figure if we can insulate the 3 attics yourself.
- topicFrugalitytagged by mum4boys, 9/28/13
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Winter Heat Help - Page 2post #21 of 2910/8/13 at 6:37pmThread Starterpost #22 of 2910/8/13 at 11:25pmpost #23 of 2910/9/13 at 11:59am
WOW! Are you eligible for Heap? Heat costs what it costs and here in the new England area I will say we have harsh cold and snowy winters. We have had winters that cost us about 3,500 and years where we have paid just over 2,000 for oil. That is about 700 a month on a harsher winter. Of course prices fluctuate and that is a huge part of it. We did go ahead and buy a pellet stove. We estimate needing 3 to 4 tons of pellets. We are looking at needing about 960 for the ENTIRE WINTER on a harsh winter. Our home is 2500SQ FT.post #24 of 2910/9/13 at 2:28pm
You said you have electric heat. What kind of electric heat? Is it electric baseboard or a heat pump?
We have a heat pump here and the info you noted about turning off the heat and it using less energy doesn't apply to heat pumps.
In the case of a heat pump, if the temperature at the thermostat is more than 2 degrees less than the "set temperature", the auxiliary heat kicks on. It costs more to operate the auxiliary heat.post #25 of 2910/10/13 at 3:46pmThread Starterpost #26 of 2910/21/13 at 2:11pmpost #27 of 2910/21/13 at 9:38pmWhere is your air intake for your furnace? If it is anywhere near the room with the wood stove you may be able to simply run the fans to circulate the warm air throughout the house without using the heat.
Do you have a gas line to your house? If so, is converting to a gas furnace a possibility? I live in the same region as you, and while my house is smaller we seldom have a combined electric/gas bill over $250, and that is with an electric hot tub. Based on our summer electric bills I'd say we spend $150 or less each month on gas heat in the winter.post #28 of 2910/22/13 at 1:11ampost #29 of 2910/24/13 at 2:31pmThread Starter
Our furnace is in our garage so not able to use that to circulate the warm air. I called every wood stove/fire place in two counties. I even emailed. I did not get a call back or email from one. Then I remembered this place where I grew up at. The service guy spent about 45 minutes with us on the phone while we figured out the model number of our wood stove. Not an easy task at all since it is literally bolted in to the fireplace. We were also debating if we needed to hire someone to install it. The parts department was so nice. It is really easy to install. The fan is a little bit expensive but we will be spending our money with this place as they earned us as a customer.
They other thing we did was figure out our source of fuel. Since we have 4 kids with juvenile arthritis and I have it also, it would be a huge undertaking having to chop and haul wood. We are pretty well sourced for firewood for the next few years but we have to get it seasoned so would not be able to use it this year. I was really not liking this idea very much of having to haul, chop and stock pile wood. After research, we decided to go with Tacoma Firelogs http://tacomafirelogs.com/ We had used the logs before and were impressed with them. I emailed the company and they help us crunch numbers. It makes more sense for our family to use this all natural logs as we can store it in our garage. We do not need to chop wood or make kindling. It is a very easy to start and maintain. Plus it is actually cheaper then us buying seasoned firewood.
After that, I called the electric company. I noticed some numbers were not matching etc. Well, what we figured out is they were still basing our electric use on the little old lady that lived in this house for almost 40 years before we moved in. We have been here a year and our electric use is more then half of what hers was. Of course, we have new windows and new insulation every where so that helps, but I imagine she had the heat turned up to the max. So yes the heat is high in winter but the payments divided over 12 months is half of what they originally quoted us. Right now, we cannot get the payment plans based on our electric use. They use a 2 year comparable. We are okay waiting another year and continuing paying two months at a time.
So our game plan right now is to buy the programmable fan that goes with our wood stove. It is kind of cool (well at least in my book). It is an actual thermostat with the fan. So if you want the room at 74 degrees it will maintain the dampers etc to keep the room at 74 degrees (of course that sounds like a sauna too me but you get the point). We are also going to get a couple of ceiling fans in the family room where the wood stove is located at. We are hoping to do that sooner then later. But you know the old adage when it rains it pours? We got hit by a rock on the freeway and literally as I was saying we need to go get that chip fix, the windshield cracked half way across. Then this morning as I was brushing my teeth, 3 teeth crumbled. So hey we do not need heat for winter. :)
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