What're your home thermostat settings?

gathermewool

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8,927
Location
New England
I found it curious that I was given such a hard time for my routine the last time a post like this came up. Well, I'm a glutton for punishment, so here goes! The main theme is temps, but feel free to share recent upgrades, suggestions, etc.

Heat: all electric baseboard, non downstairs (ranch style with semi-finished basement used only for storage, laundry, hot water heater)

Last month, December, we were home the entire month and spent at least eight hours out in the main, large and open space, with the heat set to somewhere between 65-70F. Our bill was around $420 (2250 kWh used). This is unusual for us. We usually maintain:

Master BR: 60-68F all day and all night (we use a space heater with a digital thermostat, since the wall thermostats are ancient and wildly inaccurate!
-----I hate to admit it, but the 5 and 2 year-old sleep in our bedroom with us.
Rest of House: Thermostat remains OFF all day, except ~55-60F when we want to watch a movie on the larger TV or do some chore
-----I'll toss a space heater in the basement during cold weather (negatives F), but mostly the areas that aren't heated stay above freezing all winter long.
-----We have two larger-than-average skylights facing directly south in the living room and one normally-sized sky light in the bedroom.

Right now, the daughter is napping in the warm room, but my wife, son and I are out in the living room @ 51.5F, 49% RH.
-----I've got a hoody, scarf, beanie, and normal socks on
-----My wife is on the treadmill with just a hoodie and sweats on
-----My son and daughter rarely care how cold it is; we have to make them put more clothes or slippers on. My son takes after me most. He asked earlier to go out to get the mail for us barefoot rather than go through the hassle of putting shoes on.

/

I've found that I can FEEL cold at 70F and, like now, completely comfortable at 51F, depending on the day. I don't make anyone suffer. If any one of us is feeling cold, we turn the heat up. By up, I mean 10F or so to 60F+ which is pretty darned warm to me. I hate it when I come inside after working outside and it's a balmy 65F. I don't usually say anything about it, because I know I'll cool down and might get a chill, but the back of my mind screams, "wasteful!"

The same goes for all of our resource usages. I turn the shower off while lathering and I'm trying to instill in my kids that showers don't need to take more than five minutes. I actually prefer giving them a bath. Our house came with a large spa/tub and we have a smaller china-special tub within it. My kids LOVE baths and it likely uses less water than having them hang out in the shower for more than five minutes.

Actually, the wife and I haven't used the spa/tub even once. Well, that mainly because every time I've tried to clean it, more brown suds and slime come out of the plumbing.

/

The next step is to get a home energy audit to see what they can do, and what coupons they offer for upgrades. Our hot water heater is likely 20+ years old, though the pipes are all wrapped and I have two covers on it. With basement temperatures in the 50's, I shoved a thermostat down to the tank and it read 20F+ higher, so that's good.

Besides that, I know we need more insulation in the attic, however, the attic is a crawl space, with access only through a tiny square in a small hallway closet. At 6' tall and 200# I was able to scramble my way up there, but it was a tight fit.
 
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541
Location
Canadia
Energy is relatively cheap here, so I don't worry about it much. A big percentage of the bills are structured as delivery fees, so a bit of extra natural gas isn't a big deal cost-wise. I'm most comfortable at around 20.5° C when up and about in the house, and around 17.5/18°C at night.
 

gathermewool

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8,927
Location
New England
Energy is relatively cheap here, so I don't worry about it much. A big percentage of the bills are structured as delivery fees, so a bit of extra natural gas isn't a big deal cost-wise. I'm most comfortable at around 20.5° C when up and about in the house, and around 17.5/18°C at night.

That's not too high.

I'm comfortable at much lower, but I do admit that I'm MOST comfortable at around where you say, 68-70F. In the summer that may be a little higher. I keep the window A/C units running just enough to maintain below 80F and low humidity.
 

gathermewool

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Location
New England
Depends on who's driving the thermostat. I turn it to 68f. The wife takes 'er up to 74f+ until I notice. If the mother-in-law is visiting, she cranks it all the way to the top thinking that will heat the house faster.

I turn my heat up to 70F+ when family is over and they still passive-aggressively let me know it's not warm enough by audibly shivering and such...I usually turn it up to 75F while they're here. Even still my MIL will want a small space heater to keep her extremities warm.

75F Yuck! I'm down to shorts and a t-shirt at that temp!
 
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2,552
Location
Deep in the heart of Jersey
When we had oil heat, 68-69f during the day. Down to 60-62 at night. We have steam heat, so the temp still goes up a few degrees after the boiler would shut off. We replaced the oil boiler 4 years ago and we have since raised the thermostat a few degrees, because gas is almost free compared to oil. I couldn't believe how cheap our gas bills are compared to oil.,,,
 
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17,308
Location
Silicon Valley
I manually turn them on when I feel too cold, usually around 57F or lower, and set my stat at 63F because it is too dry above that much of a temperature change. If a lot of people just took showers in the house and with sufficient moisture in the air, I would set it higher, to around 65.
 

JC1

Messages
6,044
Location
Oshawa, Ontario Canada
My temps are around 70-72 in the day. I have the nest thermostat. House is 2600 sq ft and heated by forced air natural gas. For the basement when I renovated I put 2 inch rigid styrofoam on the exterior walls and then insulated with Roxul insulation. Attic has been insulated to R60 blown in fiberglass pink. I have ridge vents on most of the roof so summer ventilation is much better.

This year I decided to get Aeroseal done to the duct work to help with air flow to the second floor. What a huge difference it made to the upstairs temp year round. Upper floor to main floor is only 1-1.5 celcius difference.


No need to wear extra clothes here To keep warm. Gas bill in winter is around $130 Canadian a month. Hydro use is only around 600 kwh. In the summer AC usage was around 1100 kwh for July and August which are usually warm months.

I also sealed the rim joist in the basement with spray foam and years ago discovered the builder that installed the windows only put fiberglass pink to insulate around each window casing. I ripped all that out and used low expansion spray foam in all windows and that made a big difference as well.

My nest report and hyrdo bills say I'm in the top 15 percent of lowest consumption in my area.
 
Messages
1,431
Location
Missouri
We have radiant heat with a thermostat in each room main except the bathrooms which have baseboard heaters. Living room and dining room are set at 65 all the others 60. That may vary if someone is cold in bed or hot while we are up and around. I always kick the heat up in the bathroom until it comes on before showering on a cold morning too.
 
Messages
251
I turn down to 68 any night when we go to bed, turn up to 70 for most of the daylight hours, and 72 when just sitting watching tv in the evening. I used to be more frugal, but am no longer hard up for money, so I figure should be comfy for my last years. Kids will inherit less, but they are quite well off themselves.
 
Messages
26
Location
VA
Winter= The gates of hell according to some family members when they visit prior to coronavirus. (this equates to 68-72)

I lived in a house years ago that had the heat in the floor. It was 99% carpeted but the floors in the kitchen and bathroom would make you rethink your steps. The gas bill was horrible.
 
Messages
666
Location
Southern MN & Omaha NE
I'm used to (winter) 68 when home, 62-64 when at school/work/while sleeping, and (summer) 72 when home or sleeping, 74 when at school/work.
My preference is basically 70-72 year-round, with a night setback in the winter but no warmer at night in the summer (I can't sleep well when warm).

We have a 3-stage modulating gas furnace, which is often running on low stage (40 percent of capacity, I think). This greatly improves comfort and helps to eliminate cold spots in the house; I'd guess this probably makes it feel a degree or two warmer than a normal furnace's setpoint as it doesn't have the "swing" associated with gas furnaces.

If I had to economize on the bill, I'd much rather set it down in the winter than up in the summer. But with how cheap natural gas is there isn't a ton of money to be saved by super-low thermostat settings IMHO (we have ~$100 winter gas bills for a ~3000sf 1980 home in MN, with a gas water heater and gas fireplace; I don't think we could get this much below $80 a month even with 60-degree settings). Folks on propane/oil/resistance heat are obviously different cases and there's likely significant cash to be saved there.

My grandparents had ~$500 winter electric bills (plus water and sewer) in a slightly warmer Midwest climate. For some reason, they had a fairly big all-electric house, and heated the whole thing with heat strips in the air handler. No heat pump, just the strips, and they set the heat to 75 in the winter. :rolleyes:
 
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1,863
Believe it or not, I don’t know what my thermostat is set at. It somehow broke years ago and I can’t see the set temperature or the ambient temperature. So I just set it to what feels comfortable.
 
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