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Old 12-22-2009, 06:43 AM   #31
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Nope. It's the idea that getting by w/ less makes me a stronger individual/more efficient. Its reassuring to know I put myself in this situation and don't complain about it. It's a personal challenge.

It's also the fact that it's a no brainer, for each degree I raise the thermostat, that's more money out of my pocket. There's no arguing that.

$250-300 may not be accurate, but that's my fear. Like mentioned, I'm a single guy, might as well tough it out and save for something more important than comfort. IF I had a family, or a wife or even a live-in girlfriend, I'd raise the heat.

Before buying my house I figured the budget out and decided I still wanted to be able to contribute "XXX" to my savings each month. By not using excessive amounts of heat, water, additional cable programming, and fuel, I'm currently contributing double my goal. So now that I've established that as the "norm" kind of, I don't want to sacrifice it.

I have a heat pump also. If I had gas heat I'd probably do what I did in my townhouse a few times.... come home from work, crank the heat for 30 minutes and it would quickly warm the place to 70*F. I'd then turn it off and by the time I went to bed it was still 65*F in there. If I bump my current thermostat by 2 degrees or more the auxillary coils kick in and I've checked the thermostat wiring, I don't have enough wires to engage the coils in stages (you need 7 wires, I only have 5) so if I bump it up to warm the house, it's pulling a lot of juice, all 3 coils glow red hot. Rewiring the thermostat (running new wire) might not be too bad of an idea... maybe if i'm still in this house when I have a family.

Speaking of saving water -

I have a nice shower routine. I wash my hair first, turn the water off and lather up with soap, then turn the water back on to rinse. I bet I've cut my water consumption by 2/3 by doing this. The shame is, in my area the water district charges customers a "base fee" and you pay any additional amount of the given base gallons. I've never paid over the base fee, so I'm not saving any money on water, but I guess the water heater doesn't work as hard so I'm saving there.
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Old 01-02-2010, 07:26 PM   #32
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how many square feet? I am thinking about getting those energy efficiant windows, i currently have the old school ones. I wonder if my electricity bill would go down any. thoughts?
we just put those in half the 1st floor of my moms house. it has 80 year old windows (all of them are). we decided to start with the living room since it has 6 fairly large windows. it was usually several degrees cooler than the kitchen/dining room, now it's several warmer. next year is the kitchen/dining room, after that the upstairs.

Quantitatively I couldn't say how much of a difference it makes since I put in a new ventless gas fireplace burner the week before Christmas (though we found you need the ceiling fan on and the doors open or it becomes an oven long before the CO/smoke alarm goes off)
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Old 01-02-2010, 10:25 PM   #33
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I keep my house at 45 degrees and wear ski pants, a jacket, a hat, and fingerless gloves inside the house in the winter. As long as my hands don't hurt, I'm good.

Electric blanket (on a timer to preheat the bed) and a ton of blankets for sleeping. Using the bathroom is the only real downside.
I wonder if he still had a wife or g/f?

I once lived in an apartment which had other apartments on each side, and one above. My gas bill was about $4.00/month even in the winter. Of course, I used my water bed heater to keep me warm at night...
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Old 01-09-2010, 05:28 PM   #34
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Okay... not gonna lie. This being cold stuff is getting very old.

Screw winter.
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Old 01-13-2010, 06:51 PM   #35
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You know, I tried for a while to use just cold water for things like washing my hands and washing dishes. It got old. I started using warm water. I did not notice a difference in my bill.
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Old 01-13-2010, 09:59 PM   #36
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I think the largest consumers of hot water are bathing and top-load washers anyway. With our front-load washer, the temperature of the water we use makes scant difference in our bill. We'd save more money by shutting off the hot tub than washing with cold, and that doesn't amount to enough for us to worry about.
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Old 01-14-2010, 04:13 AM   #37
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I have a single oil-fired boiler that provides on-demand domestic hot water and my forced hot water heat. For more than half of the year my oil tank's gauge doesn't budge, while it's only serving domestic hot water. Only when I use heat does the oil get used up. I take long showers and wash a lot of my laundry in hot water.

I've considered adjusting my habits, but considering the oil usage, there's really no reason to.
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Old 01-15-2010, 04:20 AM   #38
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There's always a reason to adjust. I'm going to sound like a tree-hugging hippy, but what about the environment?

Ex: My local water supplier bills me for a minimum of 3,000 gallons which is like $15.50 each month. I found this out because I called and inquired about my useage an they said I hadn't ever gone over their lowest useage fee, thats why my bill was the same each month.

I still try to bathe in my same old manners though, because saving water is saving water.

I wash my head, get a loofa wet, turn the shower off, scrub down, turn the shower back on and rinse. I figure I'm saving at least 1/2 of the water I use when I don't do this. When you lather up, you are generally moving out of the flow of water anyway, might as well shut it off. If I'm in a hurry I just rush through it w/o shutting it off.
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Old 01-15-2010, 04:30 AM   #39
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That's a worthy goal if it motivates you, but it doesn't work for me. For me, pragmatism, comfort, and convenience usually beat environmentalism.

Anyway, the environmental impact is less for me. I have a private well and private septic. My aquifer is very well provisioned. I have no reason to save water. So, it's still only about energy for me...electricity to pump the water and oil to heat it, both of which are immeasurably small at my house.
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Old 01-15-2010, 09:50 PM   #40
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Our water supply is 100% river fed. Whatever we don't use ends up in the ocean anyway. Nevermind the issue of standing totally out of the heated spray of the shower to soap up in what is usually not very warm air in my house. I just don't want to feel that chilly in the morning!
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