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Thread: House heating options

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    House heating options

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    The house we just moved into has 3 heating options-wood burning stove, propane fireplace, and baseboards. The propane fireplace is in the family room which is on one side of the house on the first floor. The landlord said the last time she filled the tank, approximately 3 years ago, it cost about $420 and lasted the whole winter. The wood stove is in the living room on the other side of the house, also on the first floor. There is no duct work or blower for the stove to push the heat out to other areas. And then every room has a baseboard heater. The house is 2 stories and 2500sqft. Also, we're in WA so, from what I'm told, it doesn't get really cold (but this past winter was unusually cold). Because DH and I brand new to baseboard heating and it costs we have been experimenting with it to see how well it heats the house and what the cost would be just using them. A few days we let them run all day cause it was pretty chilly (at least for us anyways) but most days we would turn them on at 8-9pm and turn them off around 7am. We switch them off at the breaker so they were for sure off. I must add we also have a hot tub pulling from the energy as well when we turn it on-use the breaker for this as well. I just got our first energy bill (the only utility bill we have since there isn't any gas and we don't have a water and sewer bill either). The average temp for the billing cycle, 28 days, was 49 and the bill was $406.

    So, I'm trying to figure out what others would do/have done that would be best. I'm a bit worried about the bills in Nov-Feb if our bill in April was over $400. Do you think we could run the propane and burn wood in the stove downstairs during the day and then turn on the baseboards in the bedrooms at night? Like do you think that would keep them warm enough? Or should we keep the baseboards on low during the day and maybe higher at night, if need be? Or would the propane take care of the whole house? We live on 8.5 acres and our landlord has given us permission to use any wood that is laying around or trees that are falling/have fallen so we may not need to find/buy much wood. I'm totally new to propane fireplaces and a wood stove without duct work and a blower so not sure what I'm dealing with here. My dad has a wood burner with duct work and blower and it heats the entire house no problem. This one seems to warm the living room and kinda take the chill off downstairs but doesn't touch the bedrooms. The only one it sort of keeps warm is the master and it is right above the living room. Our landlord keeps things much cooler than we like so she isn't much help trying to figure this out.
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    Let's address the hot tub. Is it 110or 220 volt. 220 much more efficient. However...it may be less expensive to leave it on, but lower the temp a few degrees then to let the water get to outside temp then reheat it from scratch each time. Depends on how often you will be using it.

    As for wood stove, yummmm. But the heat can be dry.
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    Not sure. How do I tell?
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLBnJVB3 View Post
    Not sure. How do I tell?
    Is the breaker on switch or is it two but connected. Or look for a metal plate near the heater unit.
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    The breaker is 2 that are connected....so are all the ones controlling the baseboards.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BLBnJVB3 View Post
    The breaker is 2 that are connected....so are all the ones controlling the baseboards.
    220 likely then. But I suspect turning the heater off then having to reheat the whole thing is what is expensive.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleMsSunshine View Post
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    Ok. We'll try that for the hut tub. I'll have to experiment with the baseboards cause it gets too hot in here with them running during the day and they don't have a thermostat with a specific temp. They just keep running. And I need to figure out why they don't seem to come on unless they are set at certain spot. They are like those old thermostats with the dial.
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    Doing some googling and it looks like the room may not be cold enough for it to register that it needs to come on. And that low is usually to keep it at 50-60. We won't let it get that cold in here. Maybe we should try just turning them down a little bit and seeing when they come on, if that keeps it warm enough, and what our bill is then.
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    Usually, propane is less expensive in the summer than the winter. You might want to keep track of the prices over the next few months and have the tank filled when the prices are lowest.
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    Well, you'll need to "pick your poison." It sounds like the house you're living in has a good amount of property since you must have your own well and septic system. I'd say wood stove or propane will be the most efficient in winter, but you'll probably want to get a fan to help push the heat through other parts of the house. You'll probably need to weigh your options for buying wood vs. buying propane. Do you have any trees or wood on your property that you can use for burning? I'd say the baseboard heaters should only be used in the evenings if the bedrooms are super cold.

    I stayed in my grandmas house for 4 months and her house is TINY - 900 sq ft total. The heating options there were baseboard or wood stove, and since I had a newly walking toddler waddling around, we opted to use the baseboards. The house was constantly FREEZING and the heating bill was like $260 in january to keep the house at 65. It was awful. I'm so glad that the house we bought has forced air (gas). I can heat my entire 2500 sq ft house for $160 in the winter and be much more comfortable.

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