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Old 01-22-2011, 09:14 PM   #1
JEDI
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Default Cheaper to heat one room w/electric heater than whole house w/gas?

lets say computer room is 12' x 12' and whole house is 1400 sq ft (not including basment).

the gas furnace is 80% efficient.
Walmart $10 electric heater.

cheaper to keep the electric heater on all day vs the gas furnace which turns on every 20min?

outside temp = 25F
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:17 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JEDI View Post
lets say computer room is 12' x 12' and whole house is 1400 sq ft (not including basment).

the gas furnace is 80% efficient.
Walmart $10 electric heater.

cheaper to keep the electric heater on all day vs the gas furnace which turns on every 20min?

outside temp = 25F
So are you turning the gas furnace off completely? The electric heater will only keep the room warm if you close it off but it would be cheaper than running the furnace if you turned it off completely.

Natural gas is very cheap (historically) right now.

Typical small heater at 1,500 wats = 1.5kWH x .10 (guess at average costs per kWH_ = $0.15 per hour x 24 * 30 (days) = $108 per month.

With a sealed off 12 x 12 room, the heater (at 1,500 watts) may not need to run 24 hours depending on the insulation of the house.
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:18 PM   #3
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Even though $10 doesn't tell us much about the heater, I'd say it's almost a sure thing that heating the one room will be cheaper. You're only heating 1/10th the space, and gas isn't cheap these days.

Edit: natural gas - yes, pretty cheap. I was thinking oil.
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:20 PM   #4
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oops *misreply*
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:20 PM   #5
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You need to heat the entire house to a somewhat reasonable level regardless just to keep pipes from bursting.
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:26 PM   #6
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Quote:
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So are you turning the gas furnace off completely? The electric heater will only keep the room warm if you close it off but it would be cheaper than running the furnace if you turned it off completely.

Natural gas is very cheap (historically) right now.

Typical small heater at 1,500 wats = 1.5kWH x .10 (guess at average costs per kWH_ = $0.15 per hour x 24 * 30 (days) = $108 per month.

With a sealed off 12 x 12 room, the heater (at 1,500 watts) may not need to run 24 hours depending on the insulation of the house.
not turning it off completely. setting it to like 60F. after all i still need to use the bathroom + kitchen.
(bedroom not a problem since i use electric blanket when i sleep.)
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:31 PM   #7
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I'm surprise that you can't figure it out for yourself.

Price of gas per therm vs. electric per KW
Room volume vs. house volume, and exterior walls
Temperature of outside, house, and room.

IMHO, it is definitely cheaper to run the space heater on electric to heat up a single room than the entire house even those NG price is extremely low at the moment (roughly 1/2 of electric for same amount of energy).
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:35 PM   #8
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gas isn't cheap these days.
Natural gas is dirt cheap these days

http://tonto.eia.doe.gov/dnav/ng/hist/n9190us3m.htm
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:39 PM   #9
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oil filled radiator?
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:39 PM   #10
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Rooms aren't insulated from each other nearly as well as the interior of the house is insulated from the outside. You just may end up paying to heat more than you bargained for.
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:41 PM   #11
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even better would be a kerosene space heater. Just don't burn your house down.
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:43 PM   #12
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even better would be a kerosene space heater. Just don't burn your house down.
Just get an electric blanket, turn the gas furnace down to 48...profit!
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:52 PM   #13
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Comfort > few dollar savings
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:53 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Rooms aren't insulated from each other nearly as well as the interior of the house is insulated from the outside. You just may end up paying to heat more than you bargained for.
Even if the R value between the inside wall is low (2 * 0.45 = 0.9 R) it is not going affect the change because of the low different in temperature between the walls.
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:54 PM   #15
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By the way, I used up to 3 of the small, electric heaters (set at 1,000 Watts) vs using my gas furnace (turned down to 62 or so) because my furnace was so inefficient (was 68% when new but was 20 years old). Just replaced it with a new 95% efficient furnace, turned the heat up and turned off the electric heaters. Will check bill next month so gauge the difference.
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:55 PM   #16
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Yes it is.

I and many people now have adjustable thermostats. So mine drops down at night and I have a small electric heater in my room that has a thermostat on it as well. My fuerance is a 93% model so even then its cheaper we have found.



Also keep the tnermostat at 50 or higher is usually enough to keep the pipes from freezing. That is in a insualted house and the pipes are in the heated part of the house. I also wrap all my pipes with the basic/cheap foam tubes from lowes/HD.
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Old 01-22-2011, 09:55 PM   #17
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Quote:
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Just get an electric blanket, turn the gas furnace down to 48...profit!
48....could lead to negative profit!

What is the out side temperature and humidity of your house?

It could be that you are increasing the dew point condition in the exterior walls if the humidity is high enough. Which, would cause condensation that leads to black mold.
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Old 01-22-2011, 10:05 PM   #18
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48....could lead to negative profit!

What is the out side temperature and humidity of your house?

It could be that you are increasing the dew point condition in the exterior walls if the humidity is high enough. Which, would cause condensation that leads to black mold.
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