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How much do you pay to keep your house warm? Like to get some ideas on keeping cost down

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I haven't opened my bill yet, sort of scared to lol.  Every winter, I always try to see if others have suggestions on what they do to keep their electric/gas bills down.  To share what we have done to help lower our bills.  My winter Electric bill is usually around $100/mo.  (haven't checked my current one).  Sometimes, when I'm not home a lot, vacations etc.  it's lower.  My gas is usually around $75/mo. or so.  My applicances are gas.  So, I don't use my oven.  I don't use my dryer, I hang my clothes outside.  I can get away with it even in Winter. 

 I never use my central heat/air.  I use a oil-filled heater & bascially hang out in my bedroom.  (it's kinda small).  The rest of the house is very cold.  We have a fireplace though, that we also use a lot.  Before, winter comes we take our truck & go up to the local Mountains & get our wood.  Then, we also buy a cord of wood.  That usually last 2 Winters.   I have 2 rooms that get a lot sun through the windows, so I use the natural heat from the sun to warm those rooms.  It's my bedroom & a big bonus room.  Even right now, without turning on the portable heater, it's very warm :)  That's how I save on my utilities.  How does everyone else.?

by on Jan. 2, 2013 at 2:19 PM
Replies (191-200):
anxiousschk
by anxiouss on Jan. 4, 2013 at 12:23 PM

We tend to keep things in the 60's (right now it's 67-- I upped it from 64).  

I'd rather layer up than have the house warmer.  It's just comfortable to us this way.   

Medusa686
by on Jan. 4, 2013 at 12:37 PM

We have a 2 story condo.  During the day its kept at 60 until my son gets home from school and then he increases it to 70.  Unfortunately I like to be warm and toasty when I am home.  Our ceilings are very high close to 20 feet so hot air rises and its tough to stay warm so I also have a space heater on in the living room. At night I turn it down to 60.  Our bills in the winter are $300 per month because we have an older furnace. 

Emilytrademark
by Bronze Member on Jan. 4, 2013 at 12:43 PM

Anywhere from $175-$200 per month. Our summers are much worse than our winters. Everything in the house is electric.

 BabyFruit Ticker
Karen2313
by Member on Jan. 4, 2013 at 1:23 PM

We keep our heat at 65 at night and 72 during the day. We live in Colorado Springs. Our utility bill is pretty high during the winter months.

Naturewoman4
by Platinum Member on Jan. 4, 2013 at 6:05 PM

As a matter of fact, I found the opposite true.  We stopped using our central heat/air, because it was very expensive!  (we have propane).  We discovered these 'oil filled' room heaters.  You don't ever refilled them.  If we keep ourselves say in 1 room at a time, it's actually very inexpensive to run.  Because, it's only heating 1 room at a time.  We can keep the thermostat on whatever temp. we want to.  Say 70 during the days that are cool & turned it down to around 65 during the night.  But, it's the other areas of the house that's cold.  In the daytime I use our fireplace for about 5 hrs. or so.  Then, it keeps the house warm basically all day.  Then, into the rooms that we use our oil-filled heater.  Yes, those electrical heaters are very expensive to run. 

Quoting Sisteract:

Those electrical heaters [the plug in that you described] can be quite costly to run. Have you ever watched your meter spin around while that thing was in use? We found it more cost effective to run our gas, central heater over usning one of those electric, space heaters.

Are you on PG &E services? They charge the highest rates-

Quoting Naturewoman4:

Thanks great, perhaps you live in a warmer part of the Country?  I was thinking about that, living in a much smaller house.  It's just my husband & I.  That would probably bring our utilities down.  Our first place was a small Condo, then a smaller home 1,080 sq. ft.  Now, it's over 1700 sq. ft.  Perhaps, that's the difference.  I admit I love my house, my husband has his 'exercising' room, I have my craft room, then our large living room that has our fireplace.  We use it to just sit around & talk. 

Then, a huge bonus room, we use as a guest room & where we put our big screen.  We have a pretty nice size dining room & kitchen.  I hate it though because our master bedroom is quite small for a master bedroom.  2 bathrooms.  1 has a nice size laundry room.  So, I was thinking I probably can give up the living room or bonus room.  Smaller kitchen, small dining/nook area.  That might bring it down to around 1,200 sq. ft.  Cutting our utilities down.

Quoting The_Doodle:

Honestly we don't really do anything. We keep it at a cool temperature but that's just because I get overheated easily and have problems with hives (which get worse with heat). We live in a 950 square foot apartment with really crappily insulated doors and windows and we pay about 90-120 a month in gas and electric.

 



Naturewoman4
by Platinum Member on Jan. 4, 2013 at 6:10 PM
1 mom liked this

That's pretty good!  I just opened ours & for the month of (I believe it's part of Nov?) anyway, it was $120.  We had guests so I kept it warmer for them, so that's not too bad.  But, thing is I think it wasn't as cold then.  So, next bill should be quite high I would think.  My summers are really great!  I can keep it as cool as I want, & our bills is usually around $50 or so.  Again we stay in the rooms that have our window air. cond. 

Quoting mmtosam06:

My electric bill is 72.95 but my 20.00 from last month rolled over so its 92.95 which isnt bad seeing as how I dont run my heat/air alot im more of a "hippie" lol


Naturewoman4
by Platinum Member on Jan. 4, 2013 at 6:14 PM

That's what I was thinking, how great it is for those that work.  Because, then they are not home as much.  I don't work, so I basically have to try & stay in 1 room.  OR I make a fire in our livingroom.  It's kinda hard though to do it everyday.  My husband has to chop wood for our kindling.  I go out & bring it in the house.  Have to clean the fireplace every day or two.  But, in the winter it's nice to have a fire.  It's warm the house really well. 

Quoting mamabirch88:

We keep our heat on about 65 honestly. We have a fire place heater in our bedroom and we are in there more times than not (we work 10 hour shifts and don't get home til after midnight) so we don't really need the rest of the house to stay too warm. Our electic is about $100 and our house is about 1800 sq feet.


sakpoints
by on Jan. 5, 2013 at 1:14 AM

Keep our thermostat low and have a couple space heaters we can use to heat the room we are in when it is really cold outside.  Plastic over the windows.  The foam insulators behind all the electric outlets and light switches.  Had someone fill all the holes in the attic where the wires were run down the walls with expandable foam.  Make sure shower curtain and all closets stay closed (no need to heat unnecessary areas), caulk around all windows inside and outside. 

Ziva65
by Gold Member on Jan. 5, 2013 at 1:22 AM


Quoting Sisteract:

Our bills were also that high when we lived in the near 6,000 foot home + pool and watering systems/drip irrigation for 2 full acres.

PG&E services are wicked high-

Quoting Ziva65:

We pay alot- easy 700+/ mo. year round. Summer it'[s heating the pool; winter is the house heater. I like the house at about 70 in the winter. We have a few great rooms, and I think they just steal the heat- they are surrounded by windows, which doesn't help.

We've completely remodeled everything a few years ago- new windows, double pane, fully insulated, new appliances- we had plumbers and electricians here to review eveyrthing as our bills were REALLY high (something was wrong).

We occassionally build a fire, even though its a new fireplace but the least bit of smoke causes us to have allergy problems so we rarely use it- it has some special fan which does put out nice heat though. We were able to get our bill down to what it is now after the major remodel. Guess I'm just not really willing to do much more than that. It does go down during the day when everyone goes back to school and to our offices. But, even then, we keep it a bit warm for our pets. We have a special cover for our macaw with his own heater or he gets sinus infections, so at least the whole house heater can be turned down. Hubby is talking ot someone to have a second heater put in for the back part of the house, near the bedrooms and away from the great rooms, that might help...

We also put solar in for our pool heat, that might help by next summer... we'll see. Still looking at going with more solar, but the bids have been the cost of someones house- not worth it, yet.

It will occassionally get down to the high 20's here, no snow. We are in the San Francisco Bay Area. We've lived in other places, and never paid this much. Our neighbors are all about the same- lower for those who keep thier houses colder... I just don't want to do that. I wear a sweater all the time anyway, and lots of down comforters at night. I HATE to be cold.


Ours isn't quite that big, but it is close to two acres. We are careful about the outside lights and things- but not as careful as I could be. Sad though-- I realize in a few short years, all the little culprits for leaving lights on and heat high will be in college :(

I do think PGE has a corner (monopoly) on the market- it's ridiculous.

Lizard_Lina
by Silver Member on Jan. 5, 2013 at 4:58 PM
Lol no no not plastic bags. They make window cover kits.


Quoting ErikaEliza:

I like that idea of the plastic bags.. thanks for sharing! !:)




Quoting Lizard_Lina:

We put plastic on all the Windows, it makes a huge difference. We also put a blanket over the attic door and the crawl space door. Also when we use the oven we leave it cracked when were done which heats that whole kitchen area nicely. Unplug anything we don't use regularly like the toaster oven or stereo.


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