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OMG... My heating bill is huge

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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby HydePark on Tue Mar 01, 2011 1:01 pm

Even though I grew up in an old 1885 house with radiators, I never knew about bleeding them. I wondered why mine were working so poorly. My basement was nice and cozy, but the house was frigid even though the furnace ran all the time. The tops of the radiators never got hot or even warm to the touch, so my wet snow shoveling gloves took forever to dry.

So I made the extravagant $2 purchase of a radiator key. When I bled them, the air escaped for literally about a minute before the water got to the valves. The whole upper half of the radiators must have been water! Now they get nice and hot, my basement is freezing cold, and my cat has taken to sleeping on top of my living room radiator. Looking forward to not paying $600 a month for heating oil to keep my house at 58 degrees. :roll:
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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby Don M on Tue Mar 01, 2011 2:06 pm

HydePark wrote: When I bled them, the air escaped for literally about a minute before the water got to the valves. The whole upper half of the radiators must have been water! :roll:


Actually the whole upper half of your radiators were filled with air! :) Don
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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby HydePark on Tue Mar 01, 2011 5:46 pm

That's what I meant! :oops: haha
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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby shizzy on Sat Mar 05, 2011 1:42 am

this is our first winter in our house. I was quite worried and had budgeted $500 for each month of the heating season.

We added insulation to the attic in December and our worst heating bill was for Feb at $390. that's for about 4000 sq ft worth of 80 year old house.

I'm fine with that. so much for "needing energy efficient new windows"..... :roll:
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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby S Melissa on Sat Mar 05, 2011 8:16 pm

So far - my two big bills - Jan and Feb - $500 each which includes about $100 or so for electric. I have natural gas boiler/hot water radiators. The house is comfortable but not toasty. It's been a brutal winter - but Shizzy - shizamm - that's great numbers for MN winter!!
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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby Accolay on Mon Mar 21, 2011 12:43 am

All the high heating numbers scare me. Right now I pay $33 to $45 a month for the natural gas budget plan all year long. I hope the bill isn't much higher when I finally get into that new house.
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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby KirstenN on Fri Sep 23, 2011 1:47 pm

We bought a 1913 concrete house that's supposed to be heated by a woodstove, but since we weren't there last winter, the baseboard heaters (a later addition by a PO) were on at a minimal temperature to keep the water pump from freezing (a local farmer shares our well, and the pump is in our basement). We were not happy to find that we were paying almost $400/month for electricity just to keep a 1000-sq.ft. house from freezing, not even keeping it livable!

When we're there this winter we plan to heat with wood, which runs $80/cord on the island, but we have really no idea how much wood it will take per season. Fortunately with all that mass of concrete, we noticed the one weekend in February that we were there, that once the house is warmed up it tends to stay warm!
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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby triguy128 on Fri Sep 23, 2011 2:06 pm

KirstenN wrote:We bought a 1913 concrete house that's supposed to be heated by a woodstove, but since we weren't there last winter, the baseboard heaters (a later addition by a PO) were on at a minimal temperature to keep the water pump from freezing (a local farmer shares our well, and the pump is in our basement). We were not happy to find that we were paying almost $400/month for electricity just to keep a 1000-sq.ft. house from freezing, not even keeping it livable!

When we're there this winter we plan to heat with wood, which runs $80/cord on the island, but we have really no idea how much wood it will take per season. Fortunately with all that mass of concrete, we noticed the one weekend in February that we were there, that once the house is warmed up it tends to stay warm!


Might have been worth building a plywood box around the pump or insulating and heat tracing the pipes. You could have heated it for $10/month that way with a relatively small expense.

Plus basements rarely get below freezing since the surround ground is at 45-55 degrees.

Electric resistance heat is super expensive. About 3-4X what natural gas costs and 2X what a heat pump costs to operate. I'd remove the baseboard heaters. If anything, get a minisplit heat pump. They you get AC for the 1 month where you might want it where you are.
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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby Danno on Fri Sep 23, 2011 2:07 pm

KirstenN wrote:We bought a 1913 concrete house that's supposed to be heated by a woodstove, but since we weren't there last winter, the baseboard heaters (a later addition by a PO) were on at a minimal temperature to keep the water pump from freezing (a local farmer shares our well, and the pump is in our basement). We were not happy to find that we were paying almost $400/month for electricity just to keep a 1000-sq.ft. house from freezing, not even keeping it livable!

When we're there this winter we plan to heat with wood, which runs $80/cord on the island, but we have really no idea how much wood it will take per season. Fortunately with all that mass of concrete, we noticed the one weekend in February that we were there, that once the house is warmed up it tends to stay warm!

ASAP go visit hearth.com ... You should have all of this seasons wood drying and ready to burn. What wood stove do you have?
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Re: OMG... My heating bill is huge

Postby Don M on Fri Sep 23, 2011 2:22 pm

We use to keep our barn pump from freezing by keeping a 100 watt bulb on inside the wooden box surrounding the pump. It would get down to 35 degrees below freezing out side!
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