The Money Mustache Community

General Discussion => Share Your Badassity => Topic started by: Thegoblinchief on October 05, 2014, 06:31:03 AM

Title: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Thegoblinchief on October 05, 2014, 06:31:03 AM
Vote for the closest option. Last winter we kept it at 64F. This year we're trying to acclimate to 62F.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: starbuck on October 05, 2014, 07:08:46 AM
65F when we're home (weeknights, weekend days)
60F when we're asleep/at work

I ain't no martyr.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: icek05 on October 05, 2014, 07:32:26 AM
I think we were at about 58 last year and plan to keep it about the same this year. Toss on a sweatshirt and some slippers and its really not bad.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: goose318 on October 05, 2014, 08:13:02 AM
We keep it around 65 during the day in the rooms we use a lot and keep it at 55 at night and in the rooms we don't really use often.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: DecD on October 05, 2014, 08:20:20 AM
I am a shameful wuss about winter.  Luckily, I've moved south and we certainly don't have the heat on yet.  I'm awesome and frugal in the summer with the A/C at 81 or 82.... But in the winter we tend to keep it more like 68.  Going to try to nudge it down a few degrees this year, though winter doesn't really show up here until December and is over by then end of February.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Bob W on October 05, 2014, 08:20:41 AM
Just turned ours down to 58.   Is it worth it to save $30 a month?
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: forummm on October 05, 2014, 08:36:45 AM
If we set it at 65 (instead of 68) how much would we really save? Probably $10/mo or less. Our highest gas bill in the coldest part of winter is $100 or less (and $30 of that is for fixed cost service fees, another $5-10 for water and cooking). We're in GA. We compensate some by leaving things warmer in the summer, not using A/C in the car (much), etc.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: svosavvy on October 05, 2014, 08:37:10 AM
Buy a pellet stove get one room wicked hot and hang out there.  Let the rest of the house go to high 50's.  I'm a woodcutter so my bills actually go down in the winter.  I've got north blood so I can't get out from in front of my a/c in the summer.  You can get really mustachian and rig up a clothesline near the thing and dry out your clothes too.  When I get my wood stove cranking I usually don't turn it off until spring.  I cook a lot of my food and have monster kettles that I heat some of my water with on it.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Thegoblinchief on October 05, 2014, 08:39:19 AM
Just turned ours down to 58.   Is it worth it to save $30 a month?

Last winter, keeping ours at 64 versus 70ish was more like a $100 spread when I compared bills. Considering how cold it got, it could easily have been more like $150 last year.

Also, I agree with one of the old MMM posts that it's not just about the money savings. Keeping the inside temp at a smaller differential makes it so much easier to go outdoors and not feel cold, or not need to bundle up as much, which is awesome with kids.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: cdttmm on October 05, 2014, 08:42:53 AM
Between 58 and 60 most of the time. We'll crank it all the way up to 62 on occasion.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Bob W on October 05, 2014, 08:47:25 AM
I think the savings is something like 3% per 1 degree for an already semi efficient house.   Depending on the size of the family one might actually spend more on food calories to maintain body temp.  Conversely, set your temp to 95 in the summer for a 100% savings.   Your food bill will go down. 
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: tofuchampion on October 05, 2014, 02:33:19 PM
68F is really cold to me...guess I'm a wimp, but that's the lowest I'll go.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: hdatontodo on October 05, 2014, 02:53:15 PM
68F is really cold to me...guess I'm a wimp, but that's the lowest I'll go.
Some people have more bodily insulation than I do. Plus, when I am working at home, I am sitting at the computer, not burning calories cleaning.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: NoraLenderbee on October 05, 2014, 04:06:25 PM
I'm the biggest wimp in the room (so far). We keep it around 70 in the winter. To make up for it, we don't have AC, and it gets hot here (over 90 today).
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Runge on October 05, 2014, 05:03:33 PM
I try to keep the deltaT between my house and outside no more than 20 degrees F. Since I live in the south, it's pretty easy to do year-round. There's about a 4-6 weeks of temps below the 30's here, so I'll let my house get down to in the 50's, but not much cooler than that. Freezing pipes and all...

Just turned ours down to 58.   Is it worth it to save $30 a month?

Last winter, keeping ours at 64 versus 70ish was more like a $100 spread when I compared bills. Considering how cold it got, it could easily have been more like $150 last year.

Also, I agree with one of the old MMM posts that it's not just about the money savings. Keeping the inside temp at a smaller differential makes it so much easier to go outdoors and not feel cold, or not need to bundle up as much, which is awesome with kids.

This is precisely why I try to keep the deltaT low because it allows my body to acclimate better year-round. I can be outside more, and also being outside more allows me to keep that deltaT low. This saves me $$ and allows me to enjoy the wonderful outdoors year-round (particularly on my bike). Although what's annoyed me most is places I visit while not at my house have either the heat cranked WAY up in the winter, or the AC on full blast during the summer. I swear, my office sets the temp to 60 in the summer time and 80 in the winter time. Shouldn't it be opposite??
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MikeBear on October 05, 2014, 05:10:20 PM
55 degrees right now, and in full-blown winter will go up to 58-60.

I'm one of those people that have a regular body temp lower than normal, and anything over 70 degrees ambient air temp is HOT for me. 75, and I sweat like crazy and get sick as a dog...
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Fi(re) on the Farm on October 05, 2014, 05:28:57 PM
We heat mostly with a wood stove, it heats the main room of the house (kitchen, dining, living space), right now it's 75 with one piece of wood in it so it's pretty hard to regulate. The heat in the bedrooms is set at 58, goes up to 65 for an hour or so in the morning but that's about it. I do a lot of cooking on the woodstove and put a drying rack for laundry near it at night, everything is bone dry in the morning.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: KMMK on October 05, 2014, 05:44:48 PM
I'm the biggest wimp in the room (so far). We keep it around 70 in the winter. To make up for it, we don't have AC, and it gets hot here (over 90 today).

I'm way worse. I'm generally always cold, if I'm just sitting around, if it's below 23-24C (73-75F) or so. My husband is similar, but for him it's because his work is super warm so his body has adapted to that. On the flip side we don't need AC until it's close to 30C.

Since our total gas/hydro is $150 a month, even if we saved as much as 20% on our bills that's only $30 a month, $15 per person or less than I net in 1 hour of work.

I think the outside winter temperature must make a big difference. Like, if you can avoid running your furnace at all then you save a lot of money, but here since in much of Jan/Feb we have to heat from -30C up to 16C or so, just to avoid frozen pipes, that extra 6 degrees on top of the 46 degree difference doesn't add a lot of extra money.  I'm sure that calculation is out there somewhere but I'm too lazy.

I certainly like to minimize furnace and A/C use in the spring/fall and can tolerate a cooler temperature then. But in the winter, a warm house is a luxury I'd gladly pay for. I've done the freezing thing when I lived in crappy places in my youth, and have no interest in doing that again. Plus the long underwear and sometimes gloves in my office job for 4-6 months of the year is plenty of coldness for my taste.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: LisaCO on October 05, 2014, 06:06:03 PM
We're going with 68 this winter.  Last year, it was set to 72.  I'm the one who's always cold, so this will be tougher on me than it will be for my husband.  I work from home too, so I'm here every day.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Astatine on October 05, 2014, 06:20:15 PM
Thanks for including Celsius! Much appreciated.

We had the thermostat set to 18C (65F) during the day for winter, but only when we were home. We also cooked a lot of dishes in the slow cooker and the oven on weekends which helped.

We have a kick-arse feather doona (quilt) which is super warm so we slept with no heating. Our house isn't particularly well insulated so on the -5C nights, the overnight temperature can get down to 8C (45F). Thankfully, our new gas central heating has a timer so we usually set it to come on 20 minutes before the alarm went off to get the house up to 15C when we got up (60F). Not super warm but warm enough to get ready and out the door without too much discomfort.

The disadvantage of this is being at work. My office usually runs at 22C during winter and *everyone* complains of being cold, but I'm always too warm at work. So others would be bundled up and I'd be wearing short sleeves in order to cope (I tend to run warmer than most people and keel over in summer heat).
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Rural on October 05, 2014, 07:01:35 PM
Not for me, this one. I'll happily pay for heat. I'd be happier working until I drop in a warm office than freezing at home, and I'd hurt less in my old age.


...This is one of the reasons we built an earth sheltered house oriented for solar heat gain. I won't have to work until I drop to pay for hear, because it doesn't take much in this place.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: justajane on October 05, 2014, 07:26:30 PM
We keep ours between 66 and 68 during the day and 63 at night.

It's quite a shock when we go to my husband's grandparent's house where they usually have it set to 78 degrees! Conversely, I find my mother's home set at 63 degrees to be too cold. Honestly I would prefer 70 degrees, but we have a drafty house, and it would be too expensive. As I age, I find my extremities get colder faster and I tolerate the cold less and less.

In the summer, we keep it at around 78-79 but sometimes lower if the temperature outside is lower (but the humidity high).
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: nessness on October 05, 2014, 07:30:35 PM
We kept it at 60-62 last winter and it was tolerable. We have a space heater that we can use when that feels too cold. We have electric heat in a cold-ish climate (Denver), so a couple degrees on the thermostat makes a big difference in our bill.

This year we'll have a new baby, so we'll probably need to keep it a little warmer. 
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: expatartist on October 05, 2014, 08:59:57 PM
We have no heat yet, and outdoor temps range from 9C (48) -> 16C (60) these days. Interior temps - I have no idea what they are at the moment, seem to be somewhere in the low teens (50s) most of the time.

In northern China, our heat comes on when the gov't turns it on: usually sometime from November->March. Also, it's free. But not plentiful - colleagues in our building say interior temps can be around 10C(50F) even when heat IS on, so we'll bundle up and have feather duvets. However last year our downstairs in Beijing's traditional housing hovered around freezing, so this should be an improvement.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Hotstreak on October 05, 2014, 10:27:58 PM
I have it set to "off" and won't that for any comfort reasons.  I picked an apartment with huge south facing windows, so even when it's 20-35f for a week I stay well above freezing.  I also bake goods, and the oven heats the place.  Body heat also helps, slippers, nice sweatshirt, hat, etc, all worn inside.

The only exceptions I will make are when company comes over, and I set it around 70 for a few hours, or if I'm going out of town and need to make sure the pipes don't freeze, so I open the cupboards, shut off parts of the unit w/o pipes, and leave the heat turned on at 50 (which is the lowest).
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MsRichLife on October 05, 2014, 10:38:16 PM
Pre-kid we had it set at 15C (59F) but these days it's at 18C (64F) so we don't have to rug up the toddler too much. Overnight, we let it get down to 13C (55F) and we turn it off when we are out of the house.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Beric01 on October 05, 2014, 11:29:38 PM
I have never turned on the heater in my apartment (California) over the past 2 years. I live it cool - I actually open my window in the winter to get more cool air in. I like sub-60 temps because I can pull over more covers sleeping in my bed. In the day I just wear jeans and a sweatshirt indoors.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: sarah8001 on October 06, 2014, 03:26:07 AM
I live in the Pacific Northwest, so not too cold, but we have no heat right now. We bought a very very unMustachian house literally weeks before finding MMM, and it has a decrepit old oil furnace that burned through 800$ of oil in 36 days with the thermostat at 60. So I declared it broken, turned it off (late January 2014) and am looking forward to when it can be replaced in a year or two :)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Monkey Uncle on October 06, 2014, 04:20:41 AM
62 F is probably a good average.  We heat with wood, so it varies a lot.  I'm too lazy to get up and load the stove in the middle of the night, so in cold weather it can get down into the mid/upper 50s by morning.  Sometimes we overdo it with a big piece of oak or hickory, and the temp gets up to 68 F or so (which is too hot for our comfort level).

Even though I cut the wood myself and thus am not paying (much) for it, I still get very miserly about conserving heat.  I remember how hard I worked for that heat all through the year, so I try my best to have some wood left over at the end of winter.

We use the electric baseboards some in the fall and spring, when it's too easy to over-heat using the wood stove.  Usually keep it about 64 F.  When I get the electric bill for the first month that we start using the heat, that's usually a good incentive to fire up the stove.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: hybrid on October 06, 2014, 04:41:08 AM
We keep it at 70 during the winter, 78 in the summer. The missus is very cold natured, so dropping any lower than that would not go over well at all. Any warmer than 78 in the summer and we just don't sleep well. Our AC bills were pretty tame this past year, we had to replace our old heat pump when it gave up the ghost and the new one is extremely efficient.

We put in a wood stove last year and will have that thing going in another month, and that keeps her reptilian body nice and happy. Her pulse is about 40 at rest.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: mbl on October 06, 2014, 12:51:41 PM
I guess it's not a fair question for us as we use a wood burning stove to heat our home.
The propane furnace is tested and might be turned on a few times during the winter when I get home.
But the thermostat is set at 55 degrees all year long.   We don't have central air either.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Caoineag on October 06, 2014, 01:14:46 PM
Set at 65 for occupied, 60 for sleeping or at work (programmable thermostats are wonderful). 65 requires that I wear a house robe over my sweater and jeans when I am at home but my body is not well insulated. Humidity plays a big role in whether I need to turn it up, high humidity requires a much higher temperature in the winter time because moist cold makes me ache but we live in Denver, so its pretty dry year round here.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: BlueMR2 on October 06, 2014, 02:02:49 PM
I can drop it as low as 65 night/66 day if it stays 50's and above outside.  Below that I have to go to 66/68 as a bare minimum to keep the wife from throwing me out.  :-)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: rocksinmyhead on October 06, 2014, 02:16:08 PM
I chose 62F in the poll to be conservative/honest. Last winter was our first being hardcore, we aimed for 60F but our thermometer in the kitchen usually showed somewhere between 58-62F.

I'm a total freeze baby, but I have lots of warm socks and cozy fleece leggings and really nice slippers and a nice cozy bathrobe, so I'm pretty much fine. Honestly sometimes I have even worn a hat and/or scarf in the house... makes a huge difference!! Cold hands are the only annoying part. Night time is fine because my boyfriend is a crazy heat box, the only time I get into trouble is if he falls asleep on the couch and I can't wake him up and then I have to go to sleep in a super cold bed by myself :) It's pretty dry here (well Oklahomans don't think so, but trust me, it is dry) so cold dampness isn't an issue.

Has anyone ever read any studies about men vs. women and comfortable temperatures?? I just know that I'm always the cold one, but can tolerate keeping the house at 80F in the summer much better than my boyfriend can, and I always see people commenting similar things about their wives/girlfriends. I just wonder why that is.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Mrs. Frugalwoods on October 06, 2014, 02:32:08 PM
63 on weekends and mornings/evenings (when we're in the house) and 59 during the weekdays and at night. We have a little heating pad for our dog's bed so that she's not cold during the day when we're not home.

Hoping to hold off until November before turning the heat on, but we'll have to see...
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Spork on October 06, 2014, 02:45:56 PM

As others have said: we use a wood stove.  We keep the heat off entirely during the winter -- only turning it on if there are a house full of guests with doors opening/closing all day.   I will run the HVAC fan when the stove is running to try to circulate the air.... but the overall heat is set to 'off'.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: seattlecyclone on October 06, 2014, 03:25:06 PM
We keep it at 68 while we're awake and at home, 62 when we're sleeping (I would actually pick this temperature for sleeping year-round if I had a magical free air conditioner), and let it drop to 48 when we're gone. We haven't needed to turn the furnace on yet this year, but will almost certainly have to do it by the end of the month.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: greenmimama on October 06, 2014, 04:11:20 PM
62-64 during the day

60 at night

I would love to have it warmer, but this house is huge and I am stuck being cold until we can sell it, because I am too cheap to pay to heat it more than that.

Our next place I am hoping has a outside wood boiler or a pellet stove so it doesn't cost so much to heat. I love visiting my friends that have indoor wood furnace, it's such a nice warm heat!
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Beric01 on October 06, 2014, 07:13:38 PM
Has anyone ever read any studies about men vs. women and comfortable temperatures?? I just know that I'm always the cold one, but can tolerate keeping the house at 80F in the summer much better than my boyfriend can, and I always see people commenting similar things about their wives/girlfriends. I just wonder why that is.

I've found this to be true as well. Here's an article (http://www.qualityhealth.com/womens-health-articles/why-women-always-cold-men-always-hot) suggesting why.

I've definitely found myself to be comfortable around cold. With cold, you can always put on another layer! However, in the heat there's only so many layers you can take off. :(
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: theanimal on October 06, 2014, 08:17:50 PM
Depends for me.  With no roommate(s) its between 50-55 but with them its unfortuantely at least 10 degrees higher.  Regardless, the window in my bedroom is open till at least mid December, so I am still able to get a somewhat adequate dosage of cold each day.  I love cold.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Astatine on October 07, 2014, 04:57:46 AM
Has anyone ever read any studies about men vs. women and comfortable temperatures?? I just know that I'm always the cold one, but can tolerate keeping the house at 80F in the summer much better than my boyfriend can, and I always see people commenting similar things about their wives/girlfriends. I just wonder why that is.

I've found this to be true as well. Here's an article (http://www.qualityhealth.com/womens-health-articles/why-women-always-cold-men-always-hot) suggesting why.

I've definitely found myself to be comfortable around cold. With cold, you can always put on another layer! However, in the heat there's only so many layers you can take off. :(

Eh. I'm never fond of gender generalisations, cos I'm invariably the exception to any "rules" around men this, women that. I'm female and HATE the heat. I am almost always the only one at work (doesn't matter who I'm talking to or which team I'm in) who doesn't feel the cold and I nearly always wish the thermostat was turned down a few degrees in the office. The only people I've met who do better with the cold than me is a guy from Canada and a female friend from (of all places) far north Qld, ie the tropics.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Apples on October 07, 2014, 06:09:44 AM
We keep it at 67, and I sit with a blanket wrapped around me.  We have brand new windows/doors/insulation so there's not a leak problem.  Might be that all the heat escapes up to the attic.  DH and I both work outside all winter, but I can't handle coming inside to less than 65, and want/need at least 67 if I'm not going to keep my super unsexy lined pants on.  But we use oil to heat our house, which at 67 runs us about $100/week last winter.  If this winter is a bit more mild and less polar vortex, hopefully it won't be that much.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: GuitarStv on October 07, 2014, 06:54:23 AM
This is precisely why I try to keep the deltaT low because it allows my body to acclimate better year-round. I can be outside more, and also being outside more allows me to keep that deltaT low. This saves me $$ and allows me to enjoy the wonderful outdoors year-round (particularly on my bike). Although what's annoyed me most is places I visit while not at my house have either the heat cranked WAY up in the winter, or the AC on full blast during the summer. I swear, my office sets the temp to 60 in the summer time and 80 in the winter time. Shouldn't it be opposite??

+1

This is a real pet peeve of mine.  In the winter you should wear winter clothing.  It's annoying as hell when people keep indoor temperatures so hot that you need to switch to summer stuff to be comfortable and vice-versa.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: greenmimama on October 07, 2014, 07:56:50 AM
I chose 62F in the poll to be conservative/honest. Last winter was our first being hardcore, we aimed for 60F but our thermometer in the kitchen usually showed somewhere between 58-62F.

I'm a total freeze baby, but I have lots of warm socks and cozy fleece leggings and really nice slippers and a nice cozy bathrobe, so I'm pretty much fine. Honestly sometimes I have even worn a hat and/or scarf in the house... makes a huge difference!! Cold hands are the only annoying part. Night time is fine because my boyfriend is a crazy heat box, the only time I get into trouble is if he falls asleep on the couch and I can't wake him up and then I have to go to sleep in a super cold bed by myself :) It's pretty dry here (well Oklahomans don't think so, but trust me, it is dry) so cold dampness isn't an issue.

Has anyone ever read any studies about men vs. women and comfortable temperatures?? I just know that I'm always the cold one, but can tolerate keeping the house at 80F in the summer much better than my boyfriend can, and I always see people commenting similar things about their wives/girlfriends. I just wonder why that is.

I have heard this also changes as we get older, Women like it much cooler as they are going through Menopause ;)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: BlueMR2 on October 07, 2014, 10:33:54 AM
I've found this to be true as well. Here's an article (http://www.qualityhealth.com/womens-health-articles/why-women-always-cold-men-always-hot) suggesting why.

I've found it to be generally untrue.  The men and women I can think of off-hand, perhaps the average desired temperature is slight colder male/slightly warmer female, but the big difference is the range of tolerance.  Women seem to have a narrower window of tolerance (around 68-78F) before complaining whereas the men's tolerance range seems to run 62-84F.  Purely anecdotal as it only covers people I happen to know and what I remember them saying/complaining about.  My circle of friends is also largely women that stay indoors all the time and men that work outdoors, so that by itself could significantly sway it.  :-)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: geek101 on October 07, 2014, 02:21:49 PM
I've already had to break out the sweatshirt and wool socks this year :( We had a couple of days with highs in the 40's last week.

I'm a big fan of the "spend money where you spend your time" approach so I got a $20 electric space heater to heat my small bedroom this winter. I'm planning to keep it between 68-70 (with the sweatshirt and double layer socks still) while the rest of the apartment will be in the low 60's, maybe lower because the thermostat is in the bedroom and there's a good chance the furnace won't run much at all with the space heater being so convenient and more efficient. This is a new apartment for me so I'm curious what my trade offs will be on the dollar/degree scale. I'd like to keep it under $45 for both gas and electric per month for my 500 square feet apartment. Last year in my old place with room mates we were spending $70+ a month per person for heat and electric.

Winter last year was brutal. We had a period of about 40 days straight in MN where the temp never reached 30 degrees. Average temp last winter was 9.7 degrees.

Please God, not again this year.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MsRichLife on October 07, 2014, 04:32:25 PM
Eh. I'm never fond of gender generalisations, cos I'm invariably the exception to any "rules" around men this, women that. I'm female and HATE the heat. I am almost always the only one at work (doesn't matter who I'm talking to or which team I'm in) who doesn't feel the cold and I nearly always wish the thermostat was turned down a few degrees in the office. The only people I've met who do better with the cold than me is a guy from Canada and a female friend from (of all places) far north Qld, ie the tropics.

Me too. I much prefer the cold to the hot. Probably why I choose to live in Canberra after growing up in QLD. You can always put on more clothes, but when it's hot it's just damn unpleasant.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: justplucky on October 07, 2014, 05:26:33 PM
We kept it at 64 last year.  My husband and I are cool weather people, so I might push for 62 this year since this summer I didn't do a good job of keeping the set temp high for the A/C.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MikeBear on October 07, 2014, 11:15:34 PM
 Well, looks like I have to rethink what settings I've been using.

I've been home the last two nights as they are my "off" schedule. I work 12 hour nightshifts, and stay awake all night even on my nights off. Anyway, I finally realized tonight that the digital furnace thermostat said it was 50 degrees inside the house! Yet, I wasn't cold in the slightest, and neither was my wife, and she's always cold. So I put a weather thermometer I have right by the furnace thermostat, and IT said it was 66 degrees! CRAP. I tried resetting the one showing 50 degrees, but nothing helped.

So, I just spent $35 for a new programmable thermostat which is a model higher, and replaced the bad one (the bad one was installed in 2005 when I had to have my furnace replaced. So it's 9 years old). It's all working fine now, and the new thermostat shows the correct inside temps.

Wow, I'm certainly glad I realized this before winter set in for sure, even with city gas it could have been costly.

Now I wonder how long it's been bad? Not that we've used it much the last month or so...
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Joggernot on October 08, 2014, 06:54:53 AM
We're still in summer mode with the air conditioned temp set for 80F.  Next we'll just turn if off.  Sometime in January we'll set it for heat at 68F.

A good portion of my day is spent outside in the shed working on my hobby, so inside temp doesn't really affect me.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: rocksinmyhead on October 08, 2014, 07:07:53 AM
Eh. I'm never fond of gender generalisations, cos I'm invariably the exception to any "rules" around men this, women that. I'm female and HATE the heat. I am almost always the only one at work (doesn't matter who I'm talking to or which team I'm in) who doesn't feel the cold and I nearly always wish the thermostat was turned down a few degrees in the office. The only people I've met who do better with the cold than me is a guy from Canada and a female friend from (of all places) far north Qld, ie the tropics.

Me too. I much prefer the cold to the hot. Probably why I choose to live in Canberra after growing up in QLD. You can always put on more clothes, but when it's hot it's just damn unpleasant.

see, this is where I'm a total weirdo... even though I definitely tend to feel cold, I VASTLY prefer cold climates to hot ones. maybe I just like bundling up, LOL. and when I exercise, even just a semi-brisk walk or walking up a few flights of stairs, I get hot REALLY fast. lately I've gone on some runs where it's been in the 60s, and I see other people running on the path wearing long sleeves and tights, and am stunned... like, aren't you SO hot?!??
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: GardenFun on October 08, 2014, 07:28:24 AM
Good thread.  House temp is the biggest thing DH and I have tifts about.  I swear he has a 2 degree operating window.  Wants the house at 71 in the summer and 69 in winter.  So far I've been able to open the window to 74 in summer and 67 in winter.  Goal is to get to 75/66. 

Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MandyM on October 08, 2014, 07:29:19 AM
My house is generally at 68 when we are awake. I would prefer to drop it a few more degrees, but my roommate is the opposite of badass. She will walk around in a t-shirt and bare feet and complain to me about the temperature. Last year for Christmas, I gave her a zip up sweatshirt that she could easily throw on and wear around the house. This year I think slippers are in order...
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: StangStache on October 08, 2014, 09:05:37 AM
We kept it at 60-62 last winter and it was tolerable. We have a space heater that we can use when that feels too cold. We have electric heat in a cold-ish climate (Denver), so a couple degrees on the thermostat makes a big difference in our bill.

This year we'll have a new baby, so we'll probably need to keep it a little warmer.

I have wondered about this.  Is it generally more efficient to use space heaters to heat single rooms than heat most of your living spaces conventionally?   My place has oil heat, and it's a killer on the wallet. 

Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Thegoblinchief on October 08, 2014, 10:36:26 AM
My house is generally at 68 when we are awake. I would prefer to drop it a few more degrees, but my roommate is the opposite of badass. She will walk around in a t-shirt and bare feet and complain to me about the temperature. Last year for Christmas, I gave her a zip up sweatshirt that she could easily throw on and wear around the house. This year I think slippers are in order...

Slippers went over big time with my wife last winter. Sierra trading Post had some really nice lambs wool lined ones with rubber soles for dirt cheap. The rubber soles help them last much, much longer.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: KBecks2 on October 08, 2014, 12:18:24 PM
I'm a baby,  I said 70, but I have been turning off the heat during the day and just turning it back on in the morning because it is chilly when we wake up.  Then after it warms up, I turn it off again.

This month (September) we had a very low (for us) electricity / heat bill!   
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: senecando on October 08, 2014, 12:36:30 PM
Landlords pay our heat, and control it, and live above us (i.e. get all our extra). Usually, the coldest season is about now, when the heat hasn't really gotten going. Midwinter it is toasty.

Thermometer in the kitchen is saying 66, which seems pretty comfortable to me.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: dragoncar on October 09, 2014, 01:39:36 PM
We kept it at 60-62 last winter and it was tolerable. We have a space heater that we can use when that feels too cold. We have electric heat in a cold-ish climate (Denver), so a couple degrees on the thermostat makes a big difference in our bill.

This year we'll have a new baby, so we'll probably need to keep it a little warmer.

I have wondered about this.  Is it generally more efficient to use space heaters to heat single rooms than heat most of your living spaces conventionally?   My place has oil heat, and it's a killer on the wallet.

Really interested in the answer to this given that we have a big house with single-zone natural gas furnace.  We'll close some vents, but it might still be better to use electric to space heat a single room.  Maybe not, though since electric is so expensive.  Maybe just electric blanket.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Thegoblinchief on October 09, 2014, 01:53:31 PM
Electricity in my area is so expensive compared to gas. Also, being cold at low temps indoors is really just a stationary issue. If I get up and move around, I instantly feel warmer.

I'd do an electric blanket, the exception being I do occasionally fire up the space heater in the ice cold laundry area of my basement.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: clarkm04 on October 09, 2014, 01:59:03 PM
58oF away and asleep last year with a heat disc in our bedroom.

66oF at home.

This winter, we're going to do 66oF at home and 62oF at night.  Seriously upgraded our furnace to high efficiency along with a ton of insulation, so we can avoid a bit more luxury.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: seanc0x0 on October 09, 2014, 03:12:26 PM
It gets very cold where we are (sometimes -40), so I envy those who can keep a reasonably small delta between inside and outside. We do keep it cooler in the winter than most around here (usually ~65F), but this year we'll have a newborn so I'll probably be keeping the temperature up a bit. I also keep it up when fermenting, but I plan to make a fermentation box for that this year so I can better regulate the temp without having to heat a huge area unnecessarily.

In the summer, it's almost always cool enough at night that we can open windows, and so I leave the AC on manual. If it's too hot and humid to sleep, even with windows, I'll crank it on for an hour or so before bed to help the natural cooling. Also do that if someone is having a fire nearby, since my wife is allergic to woodsmoke.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: gnomemom on October 11, 2014, 05:25:42 PM
I'm the lizard in my marriage ;)  I have kept it as cold as 67 in the winter (Cold, Chicago winters), but I nudge it up to 68 when needed.  I keep it at 78 in the summer, though.

Frankly, being cold is the pits to me.  And I'm wearing jeans, socks, slippers or shoes, and two layers on top at 67.  I'm not waltzing around half naked. 

I just treated myself to a new fleece top from Old Navy (on sale, about $10), and some new long thermal tops ($6.00).  Those will be on regular rotation this winter.  I sleep with an electric blanket (our room is no where near 67 - we live in an old home with terrible insulation and old windows).  I used to wear a hat to bed before my Dh kindly bought me the electric blanket for Christmas one winter.

Throwing on a hat or hood really does help on the super feeling cold days.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: PindyStache on October 11, 2014, 09:01:28 PM
This year it is 66F, last year 68F, year before 70F, so doing OK in my book. Heat was broken for a bit this fall and the house was around 58-60 most of the time. I actually thought that was fine, but DW is getting better, and DS can't seem to keep blankets on during the night...
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: FreeWheel on October 12, 2014, 07:22:43 AM
Wife and I were doing 60, then decided a couple years ago it was worth it to us to bump it all the way up to 62.

But we're in Chicagoland and still haven't turned on the furnace for the season! Been down to 59 in here several mornings now.

Every year I joke that firing it up will be wife's Birthday present at the end of the month. LOL
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: falcondisruptor on October 12, 2014, 01:21:49 PM
Usually we'd be at 72 all the time. Last year we switched to 68 during the day ant 65 at night.  Our bill went way down.  This year we've set it for 65 for daytime and 62 at night.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Mrs. Frugalwoods on October 12, 2014, 01:40:28 PM
We're trying to wait as long as possible before turning the heat on for the winter. House is at 61 during the day right now, which seems to be just fine. Hoping we can make it at least until the beginning of November.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: falcondisruptor on October 12, 2014, 02:29:10 PM
We're trying to wait as long as possible before turning the heat on for the winter. House is at 61 during the day right now, which seems to be just fine. Hoping we can make it at least until the beginning of November.

We made it to October, so I was pretty happy.  It got pretty cold at the beginning of September, so I didn't think we'd make it!
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: workathomedad on October 12, 2014, 02:43:36 PM
We keep it at 64, but even with that my hands often feel way too cold and sometimes crampy
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Mrs. Frugalwoods on October 12, 2014, 03:18:44 PM
We're trying to wait as long as possible before turning the heat on for the winter. House is at 61 during the day right now, which seems to be just fine. Hoping we can make it at least until the beginning of November.

We made it to October, so I was pretty happy.  It got pretty cold at the beginning of September, so I didn't think we'd make it!
Nice! I'm sure you have much colder temps where you are--we've actually had a pretty mild fall thus far. We have such a long winter, I just want to stretch out the no heat/no AC for as long as possible.... we'll see :)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: BPA on October 12, 2014, 04:36:43 PM
20 degrees if my brother is home.  He pays me rent and isn't Mustachian.

17 degrees if he isn't.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: oldladystache on October 12, 2014, 05:00:19 PM
When I moved into my house about 13 years ago I turned off the pilot light to the furnace. In summer I keep both front and back doors open all day and close the back door at night. In winter I usually just have the front door open most of the time. They are both open right now but I'll shut the back door when I go to bed. In late November or December I start to keep both doors shut.

For occasional very cold nights I turn on the small electric room heater.

I'll be moving to my new smaller place soon. So far the daytime temperature in the new place stays around 75. No idea about the nighttime.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: The Architect on October 12, 2014, 10:30:44 PM
We kept it at 60-62 last winter and it was tolerable. We have a space heater that we can use when that feels too cold. We have electric heat in a cold-ish climate (Denver), so a couple degrees on the thermostat makes a big difference in our bill.

This year we'll have a new baby, so we'll probably need to keep it a little warmer.

I have wondered about this.  Is it generally more efficient to use space heaters to heat single rooms than heat most of your living spaces conventionally?   My place has oil heat, and it's a killer on the wallet.

Really interested in the answer to this given that we have a big house with single-zone natural gas furnace.  We'll close some vents, but it might still be better to use electric to space heat a single room.  Maybe not, though since electric is so expensive.  Maybe just electric blanket.

We started using a good space heater. Not sure yet if it's saving us money or not, but the house feels much more comfortable. Forced air is pretty inefficient and never seems to heat the areas you want heated well.

We then keep it at 55 at night and when we're away. I don't think it's gotten that low or kicked the furnace on often, but it's mostly just a way to keep the pipes from freezing.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Penny Lane on October 18, 2014, 10:21:39 AM
We are 62-64 up here in NNE; oil heat, good insulation, passive solar gain in the winter (no AC in summer needed).  Our kids used to ask if we were poor!  We have a tradition not to put the heat on til Nov.1.  60 at night with good down comforters.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: horsepoor on October 19, 2014, 09:37:28 AM
58 most of the time, and 62 when we're home in the evenings.  If we get a good fire going and it gets into the high 60's, it feels crazy luxuriously toasty.  We haven't had to turn the heat on yet this year; hoping to make it until November.

When we bought this house it had an ancient, shitty electric furnace that barely worked, so we had to run the pellet stove in the basement pretty much 24/7, and it was consistently in the mid-50's inside.  One morning it was 47 on the main floor when I got up.  I think that winter toughened us up, so effortless maintenance of anything above 60 degrees without crazy utility costs seems wonderful.

Another plug for good wool or sheepskin slippers.  My Sorels disappeared at some point last winter, and yesterday DH unearthed them from under the bed (WHY did I not think to look there?); was SO excited to see them.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: pbiddy35 on October 19, 2014, 10:21:23 AM
One perk of deep south Texas is that we will go just about all year without the heat on.  Last year was unusually chilly winter but with Dec/Jan average temps of 60/61 respectively a light jacket and south facing home usually works.  Although with the extreme heat for the vast majority of the year not sure we come out ahead at all.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: RetiredAt63 on October 20, 2014, 08:09:05 AM
Right now I am not running the furnace (it's only October!) but the house was 15C when I woke up, and there is condensation on all the windows.  We have had several humid overcast showery days (really most of the fall this year has been like this), which is why the house is cold and damp.  Today is supposed to be cold but sunny, which should help.  If the house stays like this I will turn on the furnace to bring the heat up a bit and the humidity down.  No point running a dehumidifier, the whole house is damp, not just the basement, and every time the door opens the damp comes in again anyway (and with the dog the door opens a lot).

Where are my sunny crisp fall days?!
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: UnleashHell on October 20, 2014, 09:11:40 AM
When we lived in NH we had it set at 64 (especially as it was drafty!)  the thermostat was in the room that was south facing so in reality the rest of the house would be far cooler during the day. We then also added a wood stove in the seperatedly heated (or unheated as i prefered) family room - ran that for 4 days a week and rarely needed the extra heat from the oil based system.  paid $200 for a cord of wood for the einter and it'd save hundreds over the oil costs.


Now I'm in Florida we have a heat system that kicks in at 64 but is rarely needed.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: drak0017 on October 20, 2014, 01:59:26 PM
My mother (71) lives with me and she always seems to be cold, so I keep it higher than I otherwise would.  Last year's propane bill was brutal (live in CT), but we are adding some insulation this year - hoping this helps.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Colgate_Toothpaste on October 21, 2014, 06:36:43 PM
Our heating system is incredibly inefficient thanks to the dirtbag prior owner that flipped our house... 

Even with the thermostat set to 60 during the middle of the winter in SC, our electricity bill is $500 a month.  Compare that to spring and fall when the system is shut off- $130 a month (this bill includes water, sewer, electricity, and the bogus "pay for people on welfare" fees)

This year, we're switching to propane and I'm shutting off an entire zone of the central air system (so it only has to heat the upper floor).  Our neighbors did this and reduced their bill from $400/mo to $150 a month in the coldest months.

I'm originally from CT, so SC winters are NOTHING to me.  But, heat pumps are incredibly inefficient when the temps are below 35 anyways, so...
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: GardenFun on October 22, 2014, 05:56:14 AM
With the lower house temperatures, do you have issues with the bathrooms not drying?  I have been trying 65F and the master bathroom smells musty!  The towels and shower curtain aren't drying either.  We are also getting wicked condensate building up on the windows, requiring twice/day wiping. 

Any ideas to help this situation?  Run the temp higher for a few weeks to dry out the house, then switch back to 65F?
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: GuitarStv on October 22, 2014, 06:15:43 AM
We keep the HVAC fan on for most of the winter.  With the air circulating well we don't tend to get problems with mustiness or stuff not drying.  You do want to use the range fan when cooking and the bathroom fans when showering.  The furnace pulls a lot of moisture out of the air in a typical winter, even with house temps set to 18C.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: GardenFun on October 22, 2014, 06:21:01 AM
We keep the HVAC fan on for most of the winter.  With the air circulating well we don't tend to get problems with mustiness or stuff not drying.  You do want to use the range fan when cooking and the bathroom fans when showering.  The furnace pulls a lot of moisture out of the air in a typical winter, even with house temps set to 18C.

Thanks!  I'll try these ideas. 
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: rocksinmyhead on October 22, 2014, 06:34:59 AM
Our heating system is incredibly inefficient thanks to the dirtbag prior owner that flipped our house... 

Even with the thermostat set to 60 during the middle of the winter in SC, our electricity bill is $500 a month.  Compare that to spring and fall when the system is shut off- $130 a month (this bill includes water, sewer, electricity, and the bogus "pay for people on welfare" fees)

This year, we're switching to propane and I'm shutting off an entire zone of the central air system (so it only has to heat the upper floor).  Our neighbors did this and reduced their bill from $400/mo to $150 a month in the coldest months.

I'm originally from CT, so SC winters are NOTHING to me.  But, heat pumps are incredibly inefficient when the temps are below 35 anyways, so...

holy shitballs!!! we have an electric air source heat pump in Tulsa (gets at least a bit colder than SC, I would guess), in a poorly maintained 1918 rental house with original windows, also keeping it around ~60F, and our worst month last winter was $155. our worst bill EVER was $200 this last August, we kept the house at 78-80F but had a puppy and we all kept leaving the damn back door open all the time. is your $/KWH insanely high?

but yeah, I totally feel your pain about the heat pump, I see other people's monthly electricity usage on this board and just cry quietly to myself. we rent so we REALLY can't do anything about it (except move, and balanced with other things this house works pretty well for us)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: OSUBearCub on October 24, 2014, 01:33:33 PM
We're still in summer mode with the air conditioned temp set for 80F.  Next we'll just turn if off.  Sometime in January we'll set it for heat at 68F.

A good portion of my day is spent outside in the shed working on my hobby, so inside temp doesn't really affect me.

+1 for Central Florida

Facepunch - Though I'm already comfortable turning the system off 90% of the time I'm at home, I'm a wuss in the mornings.  I turn the heat on and up to 78 while I'm getting ready for work for an hour. (Studio apartment, essentially heating the master suite of a typical home.)  I have plans to grab a little space heater for the bathroom to avoid this and give me incentive to get to the wet works sooner. :-)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: wingarcher on October 24, 2014, 04:01:25 PM
70ish is nice.... some mornings we wake up to a house at 59.... usually the mornings are in the low 60s, at around midnight the front part of the house might be over 75. 

Yes, we heat with wood.  Small house that is well insulated.  We burn about 2 2/3 cords of wood per year, costs about $500 per year.  Only have to move it a few times, stack it for 1.5 years to dry, etc etc.  We also have oil fired hot air as backup (never used except when we're away), electric baseboard in the bedrooms just because we could (remodel)... we got options.

Wood heat is a lifestyle, we check the house temp regularly to see what's what and what direction it's heading in. Requires planning and practice, and there are temp swings.  it's much less sterile than setting a thermostat!

N
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: horsepoor on October 28, 2014, 09:29:10 PM
I wimped out yesterday - it was 57 inside when I got up - opened the blinds hoping for some solar gain, but it was only 58 when I got home last night, and I was already chilled from being under dressed outside, so got all fancy and heated the house to 62, but turned it off this morning, and ought to be able to keep it off until Saturday, when it will start dropping into the 30's at night.  I'm thinking of leaving the thermostat at 60 this winter - 62 actually felt pretty warm, and I'm not even acclimated to the cold yet!
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: paulkemp on October 30, 2014, 09:22:27 AM
I tried to make it to November, but yesterday I had to turn on the (methane gas) heater for the first time this season. Things were getting a little too chilly below 16c - 60 fahrenheit.
I have a gas-burning fireplace in the living room that supplies me with an efficient 2 kw of heat, but getting up the stairs felt similar to heading outside...

I'm hoping for just as a lousy winter as we had last year, when there was -no- temperature below zero. Saved a lot of heating costs.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Fodder on October 30, 2014, 11:27:06 AM
I've got my thermostet set to 17C now.  It was 18C, but I lowered it, and no one has complained.

Socks and a light sweater are a must, but it's generally quite comfortable.

I keep things at a constant temperature as we have a geothermal unit, and it does not deal well with abrupt change.  Electricity last year was quite expensive, so I'm hoping to be a bit more of a badass this year (the geothermal unit is powered with electricity, so I can't isolate heating costs, but I can definitely say that my hydro bills last winter were more than twice what they were during shoulder season, and way more than during cooling season).  My bills will always be high though, as I have a sump pump that runs year round, and I use a dehumidifier in my basement to keep the moisture level from going too high.  Plus I'm heating a large bungalow.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: thenextguy on October 30, 2014, 11:48:26 AM
Well, I've got the AC set at 78 degrees.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Mrs. Frugalwoods on November 02, 2014, 02:00:54 PM
Alright, ya'll, we had to turn on the thermostat yesterday. So happy we made it to November 1 before turning the heat on! Outside temps dipped into the 30's and it became a necessity. We're now feeling good at 62 daytime/58 nighttime.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: NaturallyHappier on November 02, 2014, 02:49:43 PM
We have geothermal heating and grid tied solar power.  The solar generates enough KW excess in the summer to more than pay for winter heating.  We keep the thermostat at 70F in the winter and rarely use air conditioning in the summer because we like to keep the windows open.  Electric costs me $0 each year, in fact I make about $10K each year selling the solar renewable energy credits (SRECs) back to the power companies.   Life is good.

Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: rocksinmyhead on November 03, 2014, 09:05:09 AM
Alright, ya'll, we had to turn on the thermostat yesterday. So happy we made it to November 1 before turning the heat on! Outside temps dipped into the 30's and it became a necessity. We're now feeling good at 62 daytime/58 nighttime.

We turned ours on this weekend for the first time too. We woke up and it was 54 degrees in the kitchen, so we decided it was time. I'm okay with it.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: FreeWheel on November 03, 2014, 12:33:41 PM
Alright, ya'll, we had to turn on the thermostat yesterday. So happy we made it to November 1 before turning the heat on! Outside temps dipped into the 30's and it became a necessity. We're now feeling good at 62 daytime/58 nighttime.

We turned ours on this weekend for the first time too. We woke up and it was 54 degrees in the kitchen, so we decided it was time. I'm okay with it.

I cleaned and fired up our furnace last Friday. After many mornings (and even a few afternoons) in the 50's, it's amazing how nice and warm 62 feels!
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: justajane on November 03, 2014, 04:40:51 PM
The last two days we have been suffering from a stomach virus that made us have the chills and feel really cold, so I bumped the heat up to 71 degrees. I ended up having to turn it back down to our usual 68, because it was drying me out so much. To me that is the worst part about putting your heat too high - you just get so dry. I can't breathe.

My husband's grandparents keep their thermostat between 75-78 in the winter, and not surprisingly they complain about getting headaches all the time. Forced heat at that magnitude gives me migraines, because it dries out my nasal passages. 
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: horsepoor on November 03, 2014, 07:03:03 PM
Alright, ya'll, we had to turn on the thermostat yesterday. So happy we made it to November 1 before turning the heat on! Outside temps dipped into the 30's and it became a necessity. We're now feeling good at 62 daytime/58 nighttime.

I think this is where we're going to end up, too.  I put it at 62 and left it there, and ended up too hot last night with the flannel sheets and comforter on the bed.  62 is pretty comfortable for lounging around in the evenings though.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Daisy on November 03, 2014, 07:12:25 PM
Finally - a frugal contest I can win. I may not be able to get my yearly expenses below $8k or even $15k. I may not be able to cycle every day to work with a 28 mile one-way commute. I may not be able to eat on less than $100/month.

But I sure think I can make it through the winter without even turning the heater on. Yeah! Bring it on!
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: TheThirstyStag on November 09, 2014, 10:01:18 AM
We have geothermal heating and grid tied solar power.  The solar generates enough KW excess in the summer to more than pay for winter heating.  We keep the thermostat at 70F in the winter and rarely use air conditioning in the summer because we like to keep the windows open.  Electric costs me $0 each year, in fact I make about $10K each year selling the solar renewable energy credits (SRECs) back to the power companies.   Life is good.

Wow.  I've never heard of someone making that much in selling SRECs.  That's friggin awesome.

How big is your solar setup? 
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Rezdent on November 09, 2014, 11:00:53 AM
Well, darn.
I can't vote on this one.
No Thermostat, no CACH.
Just a wood stove and propane space heaters.  We've used the space heaters a few times  already this year just to take over night chill out of the house.

However, before anyone gets the idea that we live like the Clampets..We aren't that badass.
I surprised DH with a Fancy Electric Heated Toilet Seat as a Christmas present two years ago.  Great purchase - heating the only part of the bathroom that needs it.  Plus I still remember the look on his face when he unwrapped it.  OMG, Priceless.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Milizard on November 09, 2014, 11:45:44 AM
We keep it at 70, which is down from the 72 we kept when the babies were tiny.  The lady that owned the house prior to us had the thermostat programmed at 74.  The lack of insulation in the walls makes it feel much colder.  DH did some research on it, and I guess that is because the warm air leaving the house disturbs the little aura of heat that you have around your body from your own body heat.

I say this huddled under a blanket.  The drafty feeling in the house really effects my productivity, as I don't want to do anything but stay under a blanket when it feels so cold.

We've already replaced most of the single pane windows, but it didn't help much.  I think we really need to get some insulation into the damn walls.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Longwaytogo on November 10, 2014, 06:58:58 AM
Finally wimped out an turned my heat on today, so made it to Nov 10 in Maryland.

I have an awful oil boiler/furnace combo thing so even with my foam insulated house and good quality windows I get killed on heating costs. I was averaging $2500 a year on oil; but since switching to a hybrid electric hot water heater i have got it around $1600-$1800. My goal this year is below $1500. Of course part of that will depend on temperature and price of oil per gallon. But for my part I am going to lower daytime to temp to 65 (66 last year) and night time temp to 62 (64 last year). May also try and chop some wood and turn heater off all together some weekends when we are all hanging out in living room area anyway.

When I get my debt emergency in line; a new heating system is first thing on my list.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Thegoblinchief on November 10, 2014, 10:42:16 AM
Keeping the house at 62 is holding up so far. If they know we won't be going outside, my kids will happily run around in summer clothes and no socks at this temperature. They are far crazier than I am :P

My wife complained a bit, but has resorted to wearing a hat indoors and seems fine for now. I don't know if the 62 will make it all the way to January with her though.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Chester Allen Arthur on November 10, 2014, 11:42:14 AM
I'm trying to keep the heat at 60 in the day, 55 at night.  My apartment is well insulated, so random waste heat from electronics helps keep the place warm.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Fodder on November 11, 2014, 05:01:07 PM
Keeping the house at 62 is holding up so far. If they know we won't be going outside, my kids will happily run around in summer clothes and no socks at this temperature. They are far crazier than I am :P

My wife complained a bit, but has resorted to wearing a hat indoors and seems fine for now. I don't know if the 62 will make it all the way to January with her though.

My kids too.  Their little feet will be super cold, but they will resist all attempts at socks/tight/slippers.

I get a bit chilly sometimes at 62, but I'll either make myself a cup of tea, put on a robe, or just move around a bit.  Computerizing freezes my hands at this temperature.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Prairie Gal on November 11, 2014, 06:31:02 PM
Vote for the closest option. Last winter we kept it at 64F. This year we're trying to acclimate to 62F.

That is badass! I have my house set at 20C (68) and it feels chilly if I am just sitting around. And that is with slippers and a sweater on and a lap blanket. I guess it is all what you are used to. I turn it down to 18C for sleeping.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: quant on November 12, 2014, 04:33:51 PM
Haven't turned heat on so far. However not all that badass, coz I live in Texas! :)

I have a question for you guys. As long as I put on enough clothes - I should probably be able to push through the whole winter without heat. BUT the bottleneck is in bathrooms. That's one place in the house - where one is without clothing. How do you deal with that? Just a small space heater in bathroom? Or any other elegant solution I might be missing?
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: tofuchampion on November 12, 2014, 04:44:11 PM
I have a question for you guys. As long as I put on enough clothes - I should probably be able to push through the whole winter without heat. BUT the bottleneck is in bathrooms. That's one place in the house - where one is without clothing. How do you deal with that? Just a small space heater in bathroom? Or any other elegant solution I might be missing?

You're referring to showering, yes?  I mean, you don't get naked to use the toilet, I assume.  But for the shower, you're only without clothes for a few seconds before you're in the hot shower.  And when you get out, the room is somewhat heated from the hot water.  Yeah, you'll be cold when you first step out and your wet skin hits the air, but it only takes maybe 30-60 seconds to dry off.  Then you put clothes on and you're fine.  So maybe 2 minutes of being really uncomfortable, and I'd think it would motivate you to hurry up!

I also like to hang my towel close enough to the shower so that I can reach it without getting out, and dry off somewhat before I even open the shower curtain.  That keeps you in the warm space longer, and you don't freeze quite so badly when you step out.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Thegoblinchief on November 12, 2014, 04:49:53 PM
Have a tiny bathroom! Then the hot water is more than enough to heat the room up, even with a vent fan running.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: agent_clone on November 13, 2014, 12:50:50 AM
For the first half of winter (in my old place) I put the thermastat at 17C.  In my new place  that has much better insulation for the second half I put it at 19C as I want to see what the gas bill ends up being and it was a nice comfortable temperature for me.  It is also only on between when I get home from work, and when I go to sleep.  Or on weekends when I am home between when I get up and when I go to sleep.  I do not turn it on between getting up in the morning and going to work however.  I see no point in heating the place for the 15 minutes I'm not in the bathroom.

In previous towns I have lived in I have not used the heating at all and put on a Jacket instead.  But the temperatures there were typically 2C to 15C rather than -5C to 10C that is typical here.

In regards to heating in the bathroom I find that this sort of thing http://www.bunnings.com.au/ixl-tastic-original-3-in-1-bathroom-heater_p4442438 is sufficient for a nice space heater (I don't have precisely that but it is the first result of what I was looking for).  Standing right under it gives a nice warmth.  In the locations where I did not use the heater I lso did not have those.  When growing up there was not really a heater in the bathroom either (which is my current town location).
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: ScooterMac on November 14, 2014, 11:08:49 AM
We've had our thermostat set to 55, but it finally got cold enough yesterday/last night (what with the "surprise" foot+ of snow we got yesterday) that it kicked on.  We're doing 55 at night and when we're out during the day, and 60 when we're home to start with.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Zikoris on November 14, 2014, 11:20:36 AM
Our thermostat claims 25C, but there's no way it's that warm - we're wearing sweaters at home now. When it's 25C in the summer we're wearing shorts and tank tops comfortably.

Either way, it's included in our rent, so not a huge deal.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: horsepoor on November 15, 2014, 08:38:18 AM
Haven't turned heat on so far. However not all that badass, coz I live in Texas! :)

I have a question for you guys. As long as I put on enough clothes - I should probably be able to push through the whole winter without heat. BUT the bottleneck is in bathrooms. That's one place in the house - where one is without clothing. How do you deal with that? Just a small space heater in bathroom? Or any other elegant solution I might be missing?

Just get used to it?  I feel like maybe I should be more sensitive or something, but when the house is 57 in the morning, it feels that much better to get into the hot water.  I just make sure to have my clothes laid out so I can get dressed immediately after toweling off, then I dry my hair so I don't get chilled from wet hair.  Don't languish around in the nude and it's fine.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: dcunitedfan on November 15, 2014, 11:28:56 AM
63F daytime, 61F night.  I recently bought some 200Watt ceramic space heaters, for zonal heating (keeping the bedroom a bit warmer at night, under the computer desk while in use, etc)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: RetiredAt63 on November 20, 2014, 07:05:23 PM
For my cold bathroom, I have a decorative fixture (came with the house) that has 6 fat bulbs.  In summer they are CFLs, in winter they are incandescent.  They do warm the room just that little bit when I am there long enough for a shower.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Artemis67 on November 20, 2014, 07:41:13 PM
I keep it at 55F. I'm very cold tolerant, and don't find it uncomfortable at all. At night, I'd rather sleep under a pile of blankets in a cold room than sleep in a warm  room; the warm room will always feel overheated. I've been known to shut my bedroom door so I can sleep with a window open, and if I were ever to build a house I'd love to include a screened sleeping porch.

I will bump the thermostat up to 60F if the house feels damp (to keep mildew at bay), or during periods when the daytime highs are at or below freezing, but that's about it.

Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: frugalnacho on November 21, 2014, 12:00:03 PM
With the lower house temperatures, do you have issues with the bathrooms not drying?  I have been trying 65F and the master bathroom smells musty!  The towels and shower curtain aren't drying either.  We are also getting wicked condensate building up on the windows, requiring twice/day wiping. 

Any ideas to help this situation?  Run the temp higher for a few weeks to dry out the house, then switch back to 65F?

I usually leave the bathroom doors open during the winter to let the steam go out to other areas of the house (where it's desperately needed).  I also installed a bathroom fan timer, so I can just set it for 20, 30, or 60 minutes depending on how moist it is and then walk away and forget it.  We still perpetually have condensation on the bathroom windows in the winter, but it doesn't mold or smell musty.

We keep the HVAC fan on for most of the winter.  With the air circulating well we don't tend to get problems with mustiness or stuff not drying.  You do want to use the range fan when cooking and the bathroom fans when showering.  The furnace pulls a lot of moisture out of the air in a typical winter, even with house temps set to 18C.

Doesn't running the HVAC fan use a lot of electricity?
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Villanelle on November 21, 2014, 12:09:25 PM
If my outdoor thermometer, which I brought inside for a while, is accurate, I was at 49*F this morning.  Still no heat on.  We don't have central heat, just radiators, so I can't set a specific temp.  If we could, I imagine it would be about 50 during the day, and off completely at night, no matter what (our lows rarely get below the high 20s).

When it gets cold, the air gets extremely dry, so I have no issues with mustiness whatsoever.  When I shower, I crack the window in the bathroom (we don't have bathroom fans) and leave it that way for about 10 minutes after the shower, with the door into the rest of the house closed.  Because it is part of our lease, I'm actually required to open up the house for about 10 minutes a day, no matter the weather.  So I open the downstairs while I am upstairs doing my shower and dress routine, then open the upstairs (with the bathroom already have been opened) while I prepare breakfast or check email, then close the upstairs.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Spork on November 21, 2014, 02:25:23 PM
We keep the HVAC fan on for most of the winter.  With the air circulating well we don't tend to get problems with mustiness or stuff not drying.  You do want to use the range fan when cooking and the bathroom fans when showering.  The furnace pulls a lot of moisture out of the air in a typical winter, even with house temps set to 18C.

Doesn't running the HVAC fan use a lot of electricity?

I can't speak for GuitarStv's HVAC but I've measured mine.  With just the fan running it uses 365 watts.  I don't have mine on 24x7, but I do run it when it is cold outside and we're using the wood stove -- to try to push the heat to the edges of the house.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Cassie on November 21, 2014, 02:40:00 PM
Many of you guys are a lot tougher then me!  I will not wear a hat or gloves in the house.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: YK-Phil on November 21, 2014, 03:17:41 PM

60F when we're asleep/at work


60F when I am asleep at work
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: 1967mama on November 21, 2014, 03:29:48 PM
I run mine at 68 in the day (20C) and came down late this morning to find that someone who got up early today (and left) had cranked it to 70.7 (21.5C). Made my blood boil! grrrr! We will never acclimate to the lower temps (and save $$) if everyone keeps bumping up the programmable thermostat. I'm growing to loathe that "hold temp" button!
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Gmullz on November 28, 2014, 12:41:50 PM
62F/17C is what I run at under normal circumstances in rooms that are occupied (10C for pass-throughs, like the bottom floor). If I have friends over I'll prop it up to 68F/20C. They've giving me free heat in the form of disposed body heat, so why not! Remember to feed your friends when they come over - their metabolism will heat your house!

Last winter I found 17C pretty chilly (my frugal ways kept me honest, most of the time), but now that I'm biking, I don't mind it at all. I think this is for at least two reasons: I'm more used to the cold, and when I come home my body is all warmed up from the exercise...plus it feels hot because I have tons of layers before I get undressed.

Another positive to biking! They're endless.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: GuitarStv on November 28, 2014, 04:26:03 PM
We keep the HVAC fan on for most of the winter.  With the air circulating well we don't tend to get problems with mustiness or stuff not drying.  You do want to use the range fan when cooking and the bathroom fans when showering.  The furnace pulls a lot of moisture out of the air in a typical winter, even with house temps set to 18C.

Doesn't running the HVAC fan use a lot of electricity?

I can't speak for GuitarStv's HVAC but I've measured mine.  With just the fan running it uses 365 watts.  I don't have mine on 24x7, but I do run it when it is cold outside and we're using the wood stove -- to try to push the heat to the edges of the house.

When we installed our high efficiency furnace we made sure it had a low power low airflow mode for constant usage.  I don't have exact numbers on it, but running it constantly is significantly less power consumption than running a load or two in the dryer each week.

EDIT - This question has piqued my curiosity, I'll have to take a Kill-A-Watt out from the library and measure the power consumption.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Zarya on November 29, 2014, 07:15:49 AM
We have floor heat in the bathroom (luxury!) and that helps a lot with feeling chilled at shower time. We also have an ongoing problem with mildew on the walls due to excessive humidity (which condenses on the interior north wall), so this year we're actually leaving the (nice insulative PVC) windows cracked instead of closed in order to promote air flow (like the old drafty windows did automatically). That means the thermostat is set for 20 C during the day at 14 C at night, even though the air temp is actually a bit lower due to the draft. So far it's working out much better than last winter (when the mildew really got out of hand).

-Z
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Jomar on December 01, 2014, 02:38:15 PM
We normally keep the thermostat at 19C (66F), but for two weeks in November my wife and son went to Mexico with my mother-in-law, so I had the house to myself. At first I turned the thermostat down to 16C (61F), but found I really wasn't uncomfortable at all, so turned it down to 14C (57F). Given a couple of more days of acclimating, I think 12 or 13C (54/55F) would have been doable. With the weather we've been having (getting down into the low -20s Celsius), walking into 14 felt fine, and 16 felt balmy! Family is home again, so thermostat is back at 19C- I've been baking at night.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: innkeeper77 on December 01, 2014, 02:43:29 PM
This is highly space dependent- in our apartment it is VERY drafty, with terrible windows- we set it to 68 and are still cold. Our new house (we bought a fixer upper- and have some overlap which is nice for doing the major work) feels the same when set to 64... and it is even drafty with bad windows! When we fix the windows and doors I bet we can get it down to 62.

We do turn it down at night and when we are at work though. (We have a cat, but she stays in the warmest area of the apartment most of the time anyway)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Bob W on December 01, 2014, 02:59:54 PM
I'm such a wuss now that the high is 20 outside!  Reading this makes me cold.  So I ran the math.  Our groundsource heat pump runs about $95 per month for 5 months in the winter.   It is pretty damn efficient for our 3100 sq ft Midwest mcmansion.   So heat cost us $475 at 68.  If I go to 60 it'll cost 355.  For me I'm paying that extra $125 per year.   I'll keep it in mind though and turn down at night, while at work or away from home.  So I might make $425 total for the winter.  For my sins I will not turn on the AC until July 4th!
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: ThermionicScott on December 01, 2014, 05:52:05 PM
65F when we're home (weeknights, weekend days)
60F when we're asleep/at work

I ain't no martyr.

This is really close to what we do -- 65F/18C when we're at home (including being asleep), 58-60F/15C when we're not home.  If freezing pipes weren't a concern, I'd let it get much colder.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: RetiredAt63 on December 06, 2014, 11:23:43 AM
I am at 19C during the day, 16C at night.  I notice a lot of condensation on the windows first thing in the morning, and if I leave the setting at 16C on a cloudy day the condensation never evaporates.  Not good for the house.  So I pop it to 19 and it does evaporate.  On a sunny day the furnace never comes on, the solar gain (sun low in sky) is enough.

Is anyone else in this situation?  I have wondered if just leaving the fan on all night would help.  Right now it is only on when the furnace is running.  Not sure I want to have to listen to it all night though.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: mochila on December 10, 2014, 08:00:04 PM
50F (10C). We have mild winters. The coldest it's gotten this year is the mid 20s, so the heat hasn't yet kicked in once. My trick isn't one, really: layering. I'm wearing a fleece hoodie over a t-shirt over a thermal top and yoga pantssame things I wore at work today. And no, at 100 lbs, my body isn't exorbitantly well padded.

My 500 sf apartment uses electric heat. My average power bill the past three years has been $15.32. The last time the heat came on, for maybe two nights, that amount leapt (comparatively) to $22.55.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Jomar on December 12, 2014, 12:48:38 PM
I am at 19C during the day, 16C at night.  I notice a lot of condensation on the windows first thing in the morning, and if I leave the setting at 16C on a cloudy day the condensation never evaporates.  Not good for the house.  So I pop it to 19 and it does evaporate.  On a sunny day the furnace never comes on, the solar gain (sun low in sky) is enough.

Is anyone else in this situation?  I have wondered if just leaving the fan on all night would help.  Right now it is only on when the furnace is running.  Not sure I want to have to listen to it all night though.

This is probably indicative of sub-optimal humidity control and/or ventilation in the house. Let me guess- your house was built in the 70s or 80s? That or you upgraded your insulation and sealed up an older home? The house might be too tightly sealed for the ventilation you have in place. Older homes normally didn't have mechanical ventilation (though they brought fresh air in through the furnace), and relied on the fact the house wasn't sealed all that well to allow humidity and dank air to escape. Even when they started building better sealed houses in the 70s and 80s, they didn't think about ventilation all that much. Newer homes will have mechanical ventilation systems in place to take care of this, which might be something (a little expensive) to consider. It would improve your indoor air quality. That is, if what I'm saying is true. I have no info to base this on, just a hunch! A dehumidifier would also take care of the humidity problem, but they are expensive to run. And if you have a mechanical ventilation system in place, it might just need some adjustment. Or if you're running a whole home humidifier, you may want to turn it down.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: josstache on December 13, 2014, 09:00:44 PM
My apartment is stupidly cold and heating costs are stupidly high.  This winter we've mostly been using a small electric heater and bundling up.  The apartment hovers between 12 and 15 C (54 to 59 F), but we will need to turn on the heat if it gets colder.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: RetiredAt63 on December 14, 2014, 10:21:42 AM
Hi Jomar

Thanks for the thoughtful reply.  The house was built in 2000, good insulation (I know because it cools slowly during power failures).

There is some sort of ventilation / heat exchange thingy that I never bothered to run because it was never an issue before, when I kept the house warmer and more winter days were sunnier (it's been very cloudy this year, depressing).  Not sure I even have the manual (installed before I bought the house).  It is time to go online and see how it works.  Do you have any general tips/suggestions about best practice?

Given our electricity prices (and dropping fuel oil prices), it may still be more cost effective to heat the house a bit more instead of running the air exchange.  Carbon footprint is probably about the same either way.

This is probably indicative of sub-optimal humidity control and/or ventilation in the house. Let me guess- your house was built in the 70s or 80s? That or you upgraded your insulation and sealed up an older home? The house might be too tightly sealed for the ventilation you have in place. Older homes normally didn't have mechanical ventilation (though they brought fresh air in through the furnace), and relied on the fact the house wasn't sealed all that well to allow humidity and dank air to escape. Even when they started building better sealed houses in the 70s and 80s, they didn't think about ventilation all that much. Newer homes will have mechanical ventilation systems in place to take care of this, which might be something (a little expensive) to consider. It would improve your indoor air quality. That is, if what I'm saying is true. I have no info to base this on, just a hunch! A dehumidifier would also take care of the humidity problem, but they are expensive to run. And if you have a mechanical ventilation system in place, it might just need some adjustment. Or if you're running a whole home humidifier, you may want to turn it down.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: dragoncar on December 15, 2014, 07:00:17 PM
I'm starting to get a little bit discouraged here. I got my latest power bill, and calculating the averages from this year to last year, it appears that there's ONLY around .30 cents per DAY difference setting the thermostat down as low as 59-60F. That's compared to keeping it around 64F. That .30 cents per day is only calculating the gas side of the bill, I didn't as of yet also correlate it with the extra electricity it might take at a higher temp setting, therefore possibly running the blower fan longer.

That's with a 2005 installed 95% efficient natural gas furnace, and 1992 1500sq ft modular ranch house, that's built very tight. The only other difference since last year to affect gas usage, is that I added 15" of blown in insulation to the attic on 11/04/2014. That was blown in on top of the R22~ fiberglass batts that was already there.

I'll know better after a full year of averaging the power bill with the new insulation addition, but .30 cents a day doesn't seem quite worth being obsessed in keeping it real low.

By FAR the ONE thing that made a serious difference in lowering the electricity side of my power bill this year, was changing ALL the light bulbs to Cree LED's from fluorescent. That includes the bulbs in the refrigerator, and the sensor controlled driveway spotlights. The electric side of the bill has gone down over 30%! Installing the led bulbs was the first thing I did after discovering MMM, and reading through the whole blog from beginning to end.

Wow, only a fraction of a Penny per day!
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MikeBear on December 15, 2014, 08:12:22 PM
I'm starting to get a little bit discouraged here. I got my latest power bill, and calculating the averages from this year to last year, it appears that there's ONLY around .30 cents per DAY difference setting the thermostat down as low as 59-60F. That's compared to keeping it around 64F. That .30 cents per day is only calculating the gas side of the bill, I didn't as of yet also correlate it with the extra electricity it might take at a higher temp setting, therefore possibly running the blower fan longer.

That's with a 2005 installed 95% efficient natural gas furnace, and 1992 1500sq ft modular ranch house, that's built very tight. The only other difference since last year to affect gas usage, is that I added 15" of blown in insulation to the attic on 11/04/2014. That was blown in on top of the R22~ fiberglass batts that was already there.

I'll know better after a full year of averaging the power bill with the new insulation addition, but .30 cents a day doesn't seem quite worth being obsessed in keeping it real low.

By FAR the ONE thing that made a serious difference in lowering the electricity side of my power bill this year, was changing ALL the light bulbs to Cree LED's from fluorescent. That includes the bulbs in the refrigerator, and the sensor controlled driveway spotlights. The electric side of the bill has gone down over 30%! Installing the led bulbs was the first thing I did after discovering MMM, and reading through the whole blog from beginning to end.

Wow, only a fraction of a Penny per day!

30 cents a day, is "only a fraction of a Penny per day"?

How do you figure that?
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: tofuchampion on December 15, 2014, 08:50:37 PM
I'm starting to get a little bit discouraged here. I got my latest power bill, and calculating the averages from this year to last year, it appears that there's ONLY around .30 cents per DAY difference setting the thermostat down as low as 59-60F. That's compared to keeping it around 64F. That .30 cents per day is only calculating the gas side of the bill, I didn't as of yet also correlate it with the extra electricity it might take at a higher temp setting, therefore possibly running the blower fan longer.

That's with a 2005 installed 95% efficient natural gas furnace, and 1992 1500sq ft modular ranch house, that's built very tight. The only other difference since last year to affect gas usage, is that I added 15" of blown in insulation to the attic on 11/04/2014. That was blown in on top of the R22~ fiberglass batts that was already there.

I'll know better after a full year of averaging the power bill with the new insulation addition, but .30 cents a day doesn't seem quite worth being obsessed in keeping it real low.

By FAR the ONE thing that made a serious difference in lowering the electricity side of my power bill this year, was changing ALL the light bulbs to Cree LED's from fluorescent. That includes the bulbs in the refrigerator, and the sensor controlled driveway spotlights. The electric side of the bill has gone down over 30%! Installing the led bulbs was the first thing I did after discovering MMM, and reading through the whole blog from beginning to end.

Wow, only a fraction of a Penny per day!

30 cents a day, is "only a fraction of a Penny per day"?

How do you figure that?

You didn't say 30 cents per day, you said ".30 cents," which is point-three cents, aka 3/10 of a cent, etc.  ;)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: frugalnacho on December 16, 2014, 08:01:00 AM
You didn't say 30 cents per day, you said ".30 cents," which is point-three cents, aka 3/10 of a cent, etc.  ;)

Maybe he works at verizon?

http://verizonmath.blogspot.com/

For those of you who don't know, verizon told this guy the data charge was 0.02 cents/MB, then charged him 0.02 dollars/MB, and when he called to argue it he got stone walled by idiots that couldn't understand the difference.  It was quite humorous, but also very sad.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MrSal on January 29, 2015, 06:07:09 PM
here in the house we keep it at 65 when at home and then 50 when asleep out of the house...

weve seen a big difference... usually -50% savings when compared to last year when we ran the thermostat around the clock

we live in central PA...

we've gone from using 150 therms last january to about 70 therms this year...
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: dragoncar on January 29, 2015, 08:16:24 PM
Spring has sprung in CA!  Who has turned off their heat for the spring? :-p
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Dexterous on January 30, 2015, 05:17:48 AM
I think at less than 60F I could move to the 2nd floor of a 3 floor apartment and be kept in that range for no heating cost... assuming the windows are effecient.  :P
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Guesl982374 on January 31, 2015, 01:30:11 PM
60-62 F
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: PencilThinMust on January 31, 2015, 01:36:39 PM
I have 3 yr old twins, if not, I would be able to compete.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Longwaytogo on February 02, 2015, 09:55:46 AM
I have 3 yr old twins, if not, I would be able to compete.

I have a 2 and 4 year old and watch my 1 year old niece 5 days a week. We keep the house at 65F daytime, 60F at night. They are adjusted now, usually they refuse to even wear socks.

Its been a pretty big savings since our old 70 day 68 night clown ness.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MrSal on February 02, 2015, 11:59:18 AM
I was still working abroad last year while my wife was at our houseb here in the US. Comparing to this year her bills were astronomical.

She kept it at 69/70 24/7 during winter falling into the fallacy that "it costs more to reheat than keep at same temperature".

This winter we've been keeping it at 65 when we're home and 51 when asleep or out of the house.

If it were up to me I'd keep it at 50 most time. The other day she went away for a few days and I didn't fell uncomfortable all the way until 48 F ... If I kept still like watching TV for a long time only my hands would fell a little cold and only if exposed... Other than that it was fine.

Our bills went down about 60-70% because of the change ... And if it weren't for my wife when getting out of bed in the morning wanting the house heated all the way to 65 again just to take a shower and dress up ... we'd cut another 25% of our current bill.

I think it's wasteful to heat the whole house back up (which takes about 45 min) when you only spend 25 min to shower and dress up and be out the door for the day...

But hey it was already a big victory convincing her of the new tempos ... She still doesn't appreciate it much but when I see her in shorts bare feet and at shirt I tell her she doesn't get to complain under that dress code :D ... At the end of the year she will appreciate the fact our savings total almost 700 bucks which is a flight ticket to Europe
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: TheThirstyStag on February 02, 2015, 03:44:42 PM
She kept it at 69/70 24/7 during winter falling into the fallacy that "it costs more to reheat than keep at same temperature".

I, too, face a lot of push back on that. 

Is there any good article that explains why it's good to drop the temperature for a certain time, and why they generally recommend at least 8 hours of "down time" to make the drop economical?
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MrSal on February 02, 2015, 07:39:18 PM
Several.

I think energy.gov even has a few articles.

You can expect 1% savings per degree per each 8 hours period.

Of course our 50+% savings comes mostly from the 16 hours set back at the low 50s - we pay now about 75$ per month in January temperatures. This is northeast US and we only have about 6-8 inches of fiberglass insulation in the attic - which has a big stairwell to the main living area where it's not that well weatherized (wood door only with no stripping etc etc) ... I need to address that in the spring. Will try to raise it to R-50 at least and insulate the stairwell as well changing the basement windows. I bet a lot of cold air gets sucked in from those single pane 50 year old windows
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: TheThirstyStag on February 17, 2015, 07:14:18 AM
Several.

I think energy.gov even has a few articles.

You can expect 1% savings per degree per each 8 hours period.

Of course our 50+% savings comes mostly from the 16 hours set back at the low 50s - we pay now about 75$ per month in January temperatures. This is northeast US and we only have about 6-8 inches of fiberglass insulation in the attic - which has a big stairwell to the main living area where it's not that well weatherized (wood door only with no stripping etc etc) ... I need to address that in the spring. Will try to raise it to R-50 at least and insulate the stairwell as well changing the basement windows. I bet a lot of cold air gets sucked in from those single pane 50 year old windows


What I'm still trying to figure out is if the 8 hour period is absolute.  Does the % savings per degree drop off exponentially if the period is less than 8 hours?

I ask, because I bought a programmable thermostat on clearance and although even the default program has an 8 hour temp drop overnight, it has a "recovery mode" where it kicks in early so it heats up to the desired temp before you wake up.

For example, the thermostat's default program was set for 70 degrees at 10pm, then 62 overnight until 6am when it sets at 70 again.  This is an 8 hour period, but with the default "recovery mode", it actually kicks the heat on over an hour before 6am, so the heat is off for a net of 6-7 hours. 

In my situation, I have it set for 67 until 11pm, then 60 until 8 am.  Recovery mode kicks the heat on at 6am because it takes 2 hours for my house to warm back up to 67.  Heat is only off for 7 hours, despite the 9 hour program gap. 

Essentially, I'm trying to figure out if I'm accomplishing anything by having my heat off for 7 hours. 
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: BlueMR2 on February 17, 2015, 10:40:11 AM
Now running 70F in the house.  We hit -12F the other night and have a couple of -14F in the forecast.  Combine that with plumbing that is run through the exterior walls, and we have to turn the heat up at these temperatures to keep our pipes from freezing.  :-(
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: mochila on February 20, 2015, 04:15:21 AM
It's -4 F outside. My thermostat is still at 50 F, but the heat has been coming on periodically ever since I returned from a work trip Monday. I imagine it had been going while I was gone.

My January power bill registered my usage at 42 kWh ($12.48). February's will be considerably more.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: lizzzi on February 20, 2015, 06:55:40 AM
I've managed to get the thermostat down to 60 degrees F. except for around 20 hours per week when little children are here, and I crank it up to 65 degrees Fahrenheit. What annoys me is the service charges that are levied before the actual usage even appears on the bill. For the gas bill, there is a $25.00 basic service charge, and for the electric bill (furnace fan uses a lot of electricity), there is a $42.00 service charge. So there is no way to escape those, no matter how low I keep the thermostat.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: netskyblue on February 20, 2015, 08:44:00 AM
I'm a wimp compared to you guys.  I just DID turn my thermo down a couple degrees, it's now 73 in the morning while I'm getting ready for work, 65 during the day when I'm gone, 74 when I'm home in the evenings, and 65 from 10:00 to 5 am.  10:00 has the effect of making me go to bed sooner (and thus turn off the computer & lights) because I can't stand 65 degrees awake.

80 is my "comfy" temp.  So I'm basically BURIED in blankets, teeth chattering at 73-74. 

76-77 I'm ok if I'm wearing a lot of layers.  80 is t-shirt & jeans.  I miss summer.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: lizzzi on February 20, 2015, 11:04:10 AM
There's a lot to be said for quality of life, netskyblue. You can only do what you can do. Hey, we're all here to support each otherso do what you need to do, and save money in other ways.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Colgate_Toothpaste on April 23, 2015, 01:07:36 PM
I posted in this back in October. 

Since then, I installed an Ecobee3 thermostat (January).  Our utilities bill has been down a consistent $150 each month since I installed it.  I'm very happy with the unit and highly recommend it.

I also offset the central heat with propane during January/February.  That helped a LOT.  I didn't even go through half a tank.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: zephyr911 on April 23, 2015, 01:33:57 PM
65 occupied/awake, 60 away/nights. Pretty proud of my subtropical wife for tolerating that with me. When she's away, I go to about 55.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Longwaytogo on April 23, 2015, 08:11:40 PM
By dropping from 67 day 65 night to 65 day and 62 night combined with cheapppp oil (paid $2.89 for my biggest delivery; last year averaged $4.25) this was my lowest cost heating year in the 11 years I have had house despite MD's relativity cold winter.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: MrSal on April 23, 2015, 10:17:05 PM
We saved about 400 dollars this winter alone on heat.

About 50% compared to last year :)
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: hoosier on April 24, 2015, 06:19:27 AM
It was 70-74 in my house all winter.  Heating bill was $50 for the year for the coldest winter I can remember in a long time.  Gotta love wood stoves.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: WranglerBowman on April 24, 2015, 07:26:45 AM
I hear that hoosier!  We went through about 60 gallons of oil this year, about 50% more than average to heat our 2,600 SF house.  House stayed around 68 all winter, thanks to a well fed woodstove.  We burn about 3 cords a year with a pretty efficient woodstove (~68%), just gotta find the free wood to feed it, which is never a problem in the DC area.
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Penny Lane on April 24, 2015, 09:36:41 AM
Tired of the cold-- still chilly in northern NE, 30's at night.  We run about 62 in the day and 58-60 at night with double down comforters.  Oil heat, ugh. 
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: Sibley on April 24, 2015, 10:25:07 AM
68 when home - though I'd put it at 65 but my roommate objects.

65 when not home/overnight. 2 cats in the house, and roomie really objects to anything below 65. She's so completely not a mustachian, and is not aware of MMM. I've tried! and failed :(
Title: Re: Poll: winter thermostat badassity
Post by: pbiddy35 on May 11, 2015, 09:40:02 PM
No heat all winter but we had only the rare bout with the 40s......   Now to pay for it throughout the summer....  Already in the high 90s