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Heating Weekend Home

I have a weekend home that we heat at 52 degrees during the week, and raise to 68 from Friday night through Sunday. It takes about 12 hours to for the house to feel warm.

Is the temperature fluctuation hard on an old (1929, stone) house? Would it be better to set the temperature at 55 degrees? Is there a way to determine by what percentage the heating cost will rise, along with the temperature? We have oil heat, in a 1,400 square foot house.

Re: Heating Weekend Home

Must be so cold applying that amount of heat at home.

Re: Heating Weekend Home

Part of the problem is the heat capacity of the stone, it is very high. So, it holds heat energy well, but it also takes a lot of energy to warm it up.

Have you considered a programmable thermostat that starts warming up the house a few hours before you arrive on the weekends? I know there are models out there that, if you had WIFI in the house, could probably even be controlled remotely (so that you could leave it turned down on weekends you were not going to be there).

Good luck.


Re: Heating Weekend Home

Could you give us more info so we can provide a more accurate response?

I agree with the other posters in that remote control might be a good idea; I don't see the increased heat hurting the house; 12 hours to heat the house from 52 degrees is WAY TOO LONG and suggests that as Cougars says, the stone may be absorbing and wasting much of the heat if the stone is also facing the interior.

A house that size should have rapid response to a call for heat within no more than 30 minutes, & hold the heat at a comfortable temp for the occupants----it's very common these days to use a remote control function on your iPod, or whatever to remotely call for heat while you're traveling to the weekend house so it's warm when you get there.

You say oil heat, but is it forced hot air or forced hot water; does the interior, ceiling, cellar/crawl space have insulation (R19 in walls, crawl space, R40 in ceiling); are there adequate radiators/convectors/supply & return ducts/ for the FHW or FHA; is your location very cold in winter, mild winter; what is the BTU output of the furnace/boiler; should be roughly 60-70,000 BTU, depending on location & insulation factors; is the boiler/furnace over 15-20 years old---older heating plants lose a lot of their heating ability??????

Are there a lot of windows/sliding glass doors, double pane new/single pane old with no storms?????

Mea culpa, a lot of questions, but:

All of the above listed items can have a dramatic effect on poor heat responses; relatively low-cost measures can be taken, if needed to "insulate the house envelope" by blowing insulation into ceilings, walls & crawl space, if present; double pane vinyl windows can be installed---just these 2 measures can dramatically reduce fuel costs and provide a quicker response to a call for heat & keep the place toasty warm all winter.

It's often a good idea to have your HVAC person do a walk-thru the house so he/she can size up the heating system & other items mentioned & make some comments on his impressions of what needs change or modification to improve the heat response.

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