I spend about 100 a month on all utilities, 100 a month on heating oil, the house came with double pane windows, insulated foam aluminum doors, and 10 inches of blown in cellulose insulation. I run the heater in the morning and night and heep the house at 65 at night and 74 in the morning warm up, plus I use an electric blanket when nights get near zero. I humidify to 50-60 and use LED night lights throughout the house that amount to less than a watt.
My cousin used to have a house she heated with wood and would buy from area wood suplpiers and spend about 300 a year on wood, depending on the low temps she would burn 5 to 8 cords of wood a year.
For those of you wood heating burn those chimney clean logs once or twice a month, I have had 2 stack fires, luckily both of the chimneys were brick and shot out 4 feet of blue flame. Just this weekend a nearby house burned to the ground after wood heating with a steal chimney, it got so hot from a stack fire, it set the side of the house on fire. I used to burn junk mail, but the glossy high color adds really coat your chimney with soot, all my junk mail goes in the recycler.
The coldest I ever let my house get was 59, the next place I plan to get will be an old farm house, a couple of acre's, grow my own veggies, have goats around for milk, chickens for eggs, make cheese, stuff like that. I plan to install a solar water heater with a 100 foot deep ground loop to store heat for winter and cold for summer, solar cells, as much as is practical and affordable. Now the best part of a farm is the barn, that is where I plan to store my car collection and have a work shop.
I was born in Phoenix, and moved to Hawai'i when I was 29. Then I moved here.. Portland. I just happened to get here for the 3 worst winters they'd had in a long time, each colder than the last. Needless to say, I didn't mind putting money into not being cold, and angry. This year, I'm impressed that I barely use the heater at all. I was in the bathroom today, and I could see my breath. 4 years ago, I would have surely perished in such conditions!
I don't know how much washing heavy clothes offsets the heater $$ saved, but I'm sure the bill will be much less than last year. We only heat up about 400 sq. feet.
spend about 300 a year on wood, depending on the low temps she would burn 5 to 8 cords of wood a year.
When was that? Cost to produce that wood is more than $300 now, unless no machines (chainsaw, splitter, truck) are used and the labor is worthless.
For those of you wood heating burn those chimney clean logs once or twice a month, I have had 2 stack fires, luckily both of the chimneys were brick and shot out 4 feet of blue flame.
I saw a huge chimney fire the other day. Not blue, but billowing roiling yellow/black, from a large brick chimney.
Do the chimney logs work? I have a brush and I just brush mine when it starts to look sooty. It takes longer to seal up the fireplace so that soot doesn't get into my living room than anything else, then there's putting up the ladder and taking off the cap...it's only 5 minutes of actual brushing.
300 a year was from 99 to 2004 for 5 to 8 chords, it was bulk logs, you would have to do the splitting yourself. My cousin then sold that house and bought a dream house by the water, in 2005 they had a flood and the house melted under a 6 foot flood. Literally the walls blew out and the house listed and fell on the lower level, it took a week for it to happen, so everyone got out o.k. She got out of that one and now owns an old Depot house next to the train tracks, cool if you don't mind a frieght train every hour.
Chimney logs are supposed to break up the soot and let if fall back into hearth, we would have the chimney cleaned every year, but you forget once in a while, that's when the stack fire happened. The other fire occured at a rented cabin in a stone chimney, we lit a fire to keep warm and an hour later the sound of a jet engine at full song happened and the neighbors saw what was going on and took 3 hoses to drown the fire out.
I'll do a whole desciption of the eco farm house concept Julie and I plan to do.