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Does a 15 degree thermostat setback put undue strain on heater

If I turn my heater( oil fueled water tank system that sends steam to my ancient radiators...I live in a hundred year old building)...if I turn my heater completely off at night and leave it off until late the next afternoon, the temperature usually drops in the apartment by 10 to 15 degrees. The heater man for the landlord says that when I do that and then turn the heater back on and it has the job of raising the temperature back up that 15 degrees the apartment has lost in the past 18 hours, that that put undue strain on the heating system....the seals, etc.....and that I should only maybe setback the thermostat by about 5 degrees at most. Is this baloney or is this heating guy correct....that I shouldn't be turning my heater all the way off for those 18 hours a day so that the temperature in my apartment drops by 10 to 15 degrees. It certainly saves on the oil.....but does this arrangement really put a lot of wear and tear on the heater?????


  • It's Baloney

    When ever your boiler is off you are saving money. As long as the building doesn't get so cold that you freeze pipes you are OK. And as long as you have enough radiators so the heat comes up in a reasonable amount of time, for comfort.

    Thanks, Bob Gagnon

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  • mark ransley
    mark ransley Member Posts: 155

    Is it a hot water system, what temp do you heat the water to. if under 180 and pressure is low it should be easier on it since cycling wears out components. This is just my uninformed guess. But I wonder how much you actualy save.
  • nicholas bonham-carter
    nicholas bonham-carter Member Posts: 8,576
    is setback saving ?

    here is a thread on the subject, and there are others-just use the search button on the orange banner above, leywords such as setback, or steam thermostat...

    are you the only occupant in the building, and how have you calculated your fuel savings? one way to save fuel money is to keep the pressure low, clean the burner,and maximise the air venting on the steam pipe returns. you may be wasting less fuel because of your setback, but waste is still waste!--nbc

  • steve_196
    steve_196 Member Posts: 33

    Years ago my HVAC professor calculated mathematically for us on the board how much would be saved by setting back t-stat. From that standpoint, you would be saving as long as it were 7-8 degrees. Beyond that, you are on the losing end of the equation.
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