When Is It Time to Turn on the Heat

Like a lot of people we turn the thermostat way down when the weather gets warm. The house pretty much warms up naturally and in fact often gets hot enough for air conditioning. You hardly wants to see the air conditioning and heater fighting for dominance during the summer so the best thing is to turn the thermostat way down and out of the way. Our furnace is responsible for hot water or we’d probably turn it off completely.
Some time in the fall, as the weather gets cool, people start turning their furnaces back on or their thermostat back up. This can get complicated at times. How cold do you let the house get before you turn the heat up/on? How long do you just get dressed sooner or warmer? How long do you wait for nature to warm up the house? How concerned are you about saving money on the heating bill? This last question is really important as heating oil is 2-3 times as expensive as it was a few short years ago.

This used to be easy for me. We ran the heat so that the house never got below 69/70 degrees. Why? Well my mother in law lived with us and her health was poor and she just could not handle being cold. Anything much below 70 degrees would not be tolerable for her. In fact at times we supplemented the heat in her room with a space heater and warmed it up more. She passed away about a year and a half ago and that excuse is gone.

What a lot of people do is to turn the heat down during the night and during the day when people are out of the house. They just warm it up for the late afternoon and evening. Not an option for me as I work at home all day. If I get too cold my productivity suffers. The last few days the house have been between 62 and 64 degrees in the morning. For me that is cold. I get dressed right away and have been wearing long sleeve shirts and stuff. But I’d rather avoid jackets or sweatshirts if I can. The house warms up on its own to about 70 by the end of the work day and the evening which Mrs. T is home is comfortable. I’m not sure how long that will last.

There are several things keeping me from turning up the heat. One is cost of course. But perhaps the biggest thing is ego. Do I really want to admit that I am “weak” and that the chill is too much for me? And what about the environment? Shouldn’t I avoid burning oil as long as possible?

At some point I will give up. I have a chill in me today and my office, the warmest room in the house, is only 67 degrees. Well maybe I’ll just run the space heater in here. What would you do?

One Response to “When Is It Time to Turn on the Heat”

  1. cmvp says:

    We had no heat or hot water as a child growing up on a farm in Warsaw, NY. The living room was the only room with heat and the kitchen when baking was being done and larger meals. Anyway long story short. At night we slept upstairs my brother and I in a cold bed with flannel pj’s and you know what I don’t even remember being cold at night.

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