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# Oil Heater - Saving Money

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Member Posts: 1
Is there any way to calculate the reduction of oil usage in relation to the degree of the house? For example - if we keep the house at 70 degrees and use 850 gallons per year, then if we dropped it to 68 how many gallons would be used? I know it is probably a little bit of guesswork, but looking for assistance.

• Member Posts: 139
edited July 2014
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Rule of thumb?

One percent per degree is what I heard for Long Island winters.  Too many factors to consider to make a blanket statement though.

Obviously, if it is 68 degrees out and the temperature inside is lowered from 70 to 68, it would be 100%.  But that is only if you have a furnace and an electric water heater............
• Member Posts: 69
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Saving money

﻿Oil Heater - Saving Money

Presently my electric rates are averaging \$0.14 and rising faster than I am able to insulate to keep the heat in.

Perhaps you are like me; I was curious to know what percentage in fuel expenses I could save by turning down my thermostat.  This lead to how does one compare one winter heating season to the previous one. [Al Gore is a dumkorff]  In Ottawa Canada my local weather office publishes daily figures on how many “degree days” accumulate every month.

What is a degree day?

The weather office records the highest and lowest temperature, from this they calculate the mean temperature for the day.  As a heating system that is set to maintain indoor temperature at 70 F normally activates when the outdoor temperature dips below 65 F,  we subtract the daily mean temperature from the basic 65 figure to arrive at the number of “degree days” ie   Hi -19, Low - 25, mean = -22, thus 65 minus -22 = 87 degree days; expressed as Dd. [This is our winter design temperature here in Ottawa]

Over an entire heating season I determined the total fuel consumed then divided by the

accumulated Dd in the interval.  Next year I turned down the thermostat by two degrees and repeated the calculations.  It takes patience to obtain the answer. It will suit your particular environment  precisely, no guesswork  Are you savvy using a spreadsheet and how to download data into one?

http://climate.weather.gc.ca/climateData/dailydata_e.html?timeframe=2&Prov=ONT&StationID=49568&hlyRange=2011-12-14|2012-05-27&cmdB1=Go&Month=2&Year=2013&Day=1

In this fashion I have been able to track my insulation expenses vs the fuel savings to learn that one is further ahead to insulate rather than convert the heating plant design.  The payoff is much superior.

Keep your pecker up mate!