Thermostat Tip of the Day

Here's a post-script to Kris' tip on the programmable thermostat! I've recently discovered that these gadgets are ideal for those with gas heat, but not so much for those with electric heat (particularly Rheem units), unless your set-back and at-home temperatures are less than four degrees apart. Even then, the heating and air conditioning guys (or at least mine) don't recommend it for electric heat, especially when it's very chilly. Apparently, when an electrically run furnace tries to return to your at-home temperature after you've been gone for the day, or after it's dropped to your during-sleep temperature, it has to kick in the resistant heat, which is much more expensive to run. They say keeping these particular heating/cooling systems constant (and at the lowest temperature you can comfortably live in) is the most cost-efficient way to run these systems.

Bonus tip: Some heating and A/C systems just don't play nice with programmable thermostats, either. If you notice the temperature in the house isn't climbing over 65 degrees, that there's ice forming on the surface of your furnace, on the line to the heat pump, and there's a stalagtite on your interior wall opposite the heat pump, call your neighborhood heating and cooling guy, and/or just put your old thermostat back on. :-)

Again, you folks with gas heat, you're all set...install those babies and enjoy the savings!


JCo said…
Thanks Steph. Since Santa brought me one of those programmable gagets I am glad you are in the know and if I have any questions I know who to turn to!
Jay said…
Yes, I substantiate this tip. Resistant, or emergency, heat is NOT cost-effective to use. But when temperatures get low, the heat pump is useless and emer. heat is necessary. And, we also enjoyed thawing out our unit when it froze over too.

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