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Posted: 7/20/2008 8:18:16 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/20/2008 8:19:27 AM EDT by Hokie]
Does that make sense? Are there detriments to that concept? Meaning can the constant cooling & reheating of a furnace damage the unit?

My furnace is oil fed and pushes hot water through the house. Consequently, the furnace kicks on a BUNCH of times during the day in order to maintain the preset temp.

I'm thinking of turning the furnace OFF after morning showers and turning it on again in the evening while the family does dishes, laundry, etc....then turning it off before bed. The time the furnace spends reheating the water MUST be more costly than heating a cold system from scratch, no?

At this point, I'm willing to try anything to curb oil consumption, unless it'll damage the furnace.

I'm also wondering if a hot water heater, propane or electric, would be prudent.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 8:23:38 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/20/2008 8:24:22 AM EDT by Baldmonk]

Originally Posted By Hokie:
Does that make sense? Are there detriments to that concept? Meaning can the constant cooling & reheating of a furnace damage the unit?

My furnace is oil fed and pushes hot water through the house. Consequently, the furnace kicks on a BUNCH of times during the day in order to maintain the preset temp.

I'm thinking of turning the furnace OFF after morning showers and turning it on again in the evening while the family does dishes, laundry, etc....then turning it off before bed. The time the furnace spends reheating the water MUST be more costly than heating a cold system from scratch, no?

At this point, I'm willing to try anything to curb oil consumption, unless it'll damage the furnace.

I'm also wondering if a hot water heater, propane or electric, would be prudent.


2 months ago changed out the furnace for electric Hot water and Heat pump. It will pay for itself in less than 2 years. In about a year if HO goes over $4. After that all savings.

Hard to believe you still use oil these days. Even in Maine I would get a artisian well HP rather than an air to air style.

Electrical prices are Govt controlled.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 8:26:34 AM EDT
So your furnace [boiler?] also heats your potable water? Ouch, install a small electric water heater [20 gallon or less] or a small under sink elec unit where you use hot water. It'll be FAR cheaper then using what you are using now. Even cutting your oil burner out of the potable water loop and installing an electric water heater would be cheaper and would pay for itself pretty quickly while saving wear and tear on your oil burner.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 10:12:01 AM EDT
I'm gonna have to do something, this winter will literally kill my finances
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 10:14:47 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Hokie:
I'm gonna have to do something, this winter will literally kill my finances


Look around for someone to do an energy audit.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 10:24:52 AM EDT
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 10:28:07 AM EDT
If we indeed move to NH, I think I'm going to go with the geothermal heat pump.

Anyone here actually have one? What d you have to say about them?
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 10:31:36 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Hokie:
I'm gonna have to do something, this winter will literally kill my finances


Have you checked into a tankless hot water heater? Or an off the boiler tank so your boiler doesn't run all the time? How about wood/pelet stoves for heat?
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 10:31:55 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/20/2008 10:37:49 AM EDT by Baldmonk]

Originally Posted By Hokie:
I'm gonna have to do something, this winter will literally kill my finances


I shoped around for 2 months before I changed out to a heat pump and electric water heater. Cost me $4500 total installed for a 13 SER Amanda from a guy partially retired not even in the phone book. The next cheapest was $6900 all the way up to 12K on some quotes. There is alot of mark-up in HVAC. I was told and SHOWN that there is over 300% markup on material alone from what they pay. That's how they can afford to all drive brand new 08 utility vans and print you a color print quote (with picture of the unit) on the spot from better laptops than most best buy stores sell.

Also my AC electrical bills been cut by around 1/4.
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 10:33:06 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/20/2008 10:34:35 AM EDT by ARMALITE-FAN]
I think he has hot water heat

Reread guess I'm wrong.



You use your furnace to heat your water in summer?
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 7:58:45 PM EDT
If you have a summer/winter hot water boiler you can lower the aquastat
from 180 to 160 and maybe 140.

Usually for winter the aquastat is set to fire on at 160 till the water reaches 180 degrees.

Many people lower the temperature for summer use.

20 degrees differential is needed and it's not good to have the boiler temp below 140.

With the price of oil now an electric water heater may save money as other have mentioned.

If you don't like using oil consider anthracite coal. I'll be installing an automatic coal fired boiler soon.

I think there are people in Maine that use anthracite.

www.keystoker.com/coaloilboilers.html

Anthracite Coal Forum
Link Posted: 7/20/2008 8:04:00 PM EDT
what's the temp in Maine? It was 90+ here
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 4:28:43 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/21/2008 4:29:03 AM EDT by Hokie]

Originally Posted By ARMALITE-FAN:
I think he has hot water heat

Reread guess I'm wrong.



You use your furnace to heat your water in summer?


Yeah the furnace is always kicking on to maintain the home's water temp. We have baseboard heating. It's a good furnace and the house is built well. I built new in 2004.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 4:29:59 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Machinist:
If you have a summer/winter hot water boiler you can lower the aquastat
from 180 to 160 and maybe 140.

Usually for winter the aquastat is set to fire on at 160 till the water reaches 180 degrees.

Many people lower the temperature for summer use.

20 degrees differential is needed and it's not good to have the boiler temp below 140.

With the price of oil now an electric water heater may save money as other have mentioned.

If you don't like using oil consider anthracite coal. I'll be installing an automatic coal fired boiler soon.

I think there are people in Maine that use anthracite.

www.keystoker.com/coaloilboilers.html

Anthracite Coal Forum


Interesting stuff! Why is in not good to have the boiler below 140? So I take it you don't think shutting the boiler on & off is a sound practice?
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 4:32:26 AM EDT
I think the answer might be to install some sort of hot water heater and use some electric space heaters to offset the homes internal temp during the winter months....

I can't see swapping out that furnace just yet - it's practically new. I'm really looking to simply cut my oil consumption from 4 tanks a year to 2. Summer is fine, it's the winter that that pisses me off!
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 4:34:06 AM EDT

Originally Posted By fxntime:
So your furnace [boiler?] also heats your potable water? Ouch, install a small electric water heater [20 gallon or less] or a small under sink elec unit where you use hot water. It'll be FAR cheaper then using what you are using now. Even cutting your oil burner out of the potable water loop and installing an electric water heater would be cheaper and would pay for itself pretty quickly while saving wear and tear on your oil burner.


I think so...

Ideally, I'd like to run the furnace ONLY for the baseboard heaters....and leave the sink, shower, dishwasher, and washing machine aside for a hot water heater....

I think!
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 8:31:14 AM EDT
Based on what I have heard from friends who run space heaters, it isn't really that economical.

I like the electric hot water idea.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 8:48:53 AM EDT
go old school and use wood. just back your truck up to any old wood lot and just cut a truck load and drive off.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 8:58:12 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/21/2008 9:00:08 AM EDT by Baldmonk]

Originally Posted By Hokie:
I think the answer might be to install some sort of hot water heater and use some electric space heaters to offset the homes internal temp during the winter months....

I can't see swapping out that furnace just yet - it's practically new. I'm really looking to simply cut my oil consumption from 4 tanks a year to 2. Summer is fine, it's the winter that that pisses me off!


My furnace was only 3 yrs old when I changed it to Heat Pump. Had to be done. Worrying about already spent money was going to COST me a fortune with oil costs. Good luck with those space heaters. Efficency (BTU heat output) is ugly low on those things for KWHr spent.

If I were you I would go artisian well Heat Pump in Maine.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 10:23:47 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Milltown:
go old school and use wood. just back your truck up to any old wood lot and just cut a truck load and drive off.


I hope you are joking.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 11:35:47 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Hokie:
I'm gonna have to do something, this winter will literally kill my finances


That's what New England deserves for sending a bunch of environmentalists and liberals to Congress.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 11:45:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:

Originally Posted By Milltown:
go old school and use wood. just back your truck up to any old wood lot and just cut a truck load and drive off.


I hope you are joking.


Unfortunately is being done alot more than u think these days.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 12:16:52 PM EDT
If its a cast boiler it might leak a little water when it cools off.something about the seals
shrinking mine does when I shut it down when we go on vacation. my furnace is a 20 yr. old
EFM. I think I am going to coal next year though where as I only live 35 minutes from the coal breaker outside tamaqua PA
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 12:41:13 PM EDT
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 12:38:02 AM EDT
I believe the reason is that it somehow causes more rust in the boiler.
I don't fully understand it all, just been reading much in preparation of buying a new boiler.
I measured the amount of oil I use per day with a Hobbs meter.
I found that in the summer I use about 1 gallon per day.
I intend to use the coal boiler the same way, it will be interesting to see the comparison of oil per day to coal per day.
There must be some procedure to shut a boiler down for an extended period, but I've not seen one.
Link Posted: 7/22/2008 7:24:35 AM EDT
Then it would seem the smartest maneauver would be to reduce the amount of times my furnace is tasked to reheat or replenish it's hot water. To that end, even though the furnace feeds the baseboard heaters with hot water, having a reserve of hot water for appliances & bathrooms would be a smart move.

I'll look into electric. I have propane too, but given that fluctuating price - that's no safe bet either.

Great info everyone, thank you and keep it coming.
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