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Nov/Dec gas bill - down from Oct, 10% of 2004.

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by saichele, Dec 23, 2005.

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  1. saichele

    saichele Minister of Fire

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    This year - 21 ccf, last year - 216. @$1.05/ccf (hike hasn't taken effect) $204.75 not handed over to the gas company. Almost 300 at the new rate.

    At that pace, about 3 yrs to pay off the insert/liner, which is ballpark of what we'd figured. Electric use is flat, same as the rest of the year.

    More disturbing, the Oct/Nov gas bill was 47 ccf (both actual). Major difference was wrapping the hot water heater (R13 foil faced fiberglass) - hadn't even turned the furnace on that month. That $20 investment paid off fast, because we definitely ran the furnace some in Dec (just cold mornings, but still).

    Moral of the story - wrap that water heater, even if it's relatively new.

    Back to insulating ducts...

    Steve

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  2. vgrund

    vgrund Feeling the Heat

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    Amherst, NH
    Steve,

    Now you've done it! You are feeding my energy conservation "hobby" / obsession with new ideas. I thought about wrapping our water heater but didn't think it would make much of a difference on a newer model. At a minimum this now deserves more research.

    Victor
  3. saichele

    saichele Minister of Fire

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    Like my grandfather said, "A penny saved is a penny kept."

    But I'm generally thrilled that the water heater wrap ($20 at menards) paid for itself in one month. That's probably the best return I'll see, even counting itching from the fiberglass. The duct wrap is already pushing $100, and if the total monthly bill is only $30, it's goign to take a while to see that come back.

    And, at least on-site, a 90% reduction in fossil fuel consumption year over year. That's saving money and the planet...

    Steve
  4. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    Steve good going don't for get the pipe insulation. What kind of duct insulation wrap did you get? Remember to cut it longer and staple the seam together
  5. joshuaviktor

    joshuaviktor New Member

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    Whats good for pipe insulation? Fiberglass, rubber foam? Which is best?
  6. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    again any insulation is an improvement on just hot water the poylstyrere works ok the thicker the better hightr R value
    On baseboard heat the polystyrese melt at 180 degrees when your boiler working hard hard, it is really cold, the water leaving can approach 200 or more degrees. Which means the Stryofoam based pipe insulation melts Aromor flex rubber base will withstand up to 210 degrees. That what's should be used, usually 3/8" R3.3 Again a huge improvement preventing heat loss. The premiss is to deliver as much heat to the living space as possible. Long runs of exposed pipes in you cool basement produces tremendous heat loss. While in the basement caulk, stuff fiberglass, or foam the perimeter sill contact to your foundation, another problematic drafty area
  7. saichele

    saichele Minister of Fire

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    I did pipe insulation last year because the longer runs weren't warm enough, and the short runs were too hot. So it all got some foil backed fiberglass spiral wrapped around the pipe. Don't know what the temp rating is, but it only needs to get to 130F or so. No baseboard heat, so that's not an issue.

    For the ducts it'sa mess because I have a couple generations of work down there. The newest is easiest - just round duct. I've used some foil enclosed bubble wrap, and cut thin strips of it every 2-3 ft to create an air pocket under it. The older stuff is all over the place - some of it's sometype of cloth, some of it's just board tacked across the joist bays. So that requires a little more creativity - combinations of the bubble wrap and various faced and unfaced fiberglass products.

    Steve
  8. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    I think you are describing Joist bay or Pan bay areas used to return air ducts between the joist. I would either sheet metal acrost it or caulk and plywood it and seal it. Consentrate insulating the supply side first. If you feel leaks at the seams use alumium HVAC duct tape and seal them. Yes we all can use some tighten up the ship ( sorry Johny tugs). Did you check the house foundation and sill area yet? I see someone reads my post about the buble wrap and strips to increase the r value.
  9. vgrund

    vgrund Feeling the Heat

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    I spent a lot of time in my basement doing such things. I got the big stuff but I'm still not done.

    I'll add one thing that is super easy to do and which offered an immediate improvement to my basement:

    Caulk the basement windows shut. Use a peelable caulk if you think you might need to open the windows again. If not, silicone is a great and more durable choice. Do not, however, impede access to any fire escapes.

    I have what I consider to be "builder's special" single-pane windows around the foundation of my unheated basement. They leaked like mad. After caulking my basement is noticably warmer throughout.

    Victor
  10. saichele

    saichele Minister of Fire

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    RE; basement windows

    Since we don't open them, I made little 1x2 frames covered in 1 mil plastic sheet (translucent but not transparent) and sealed them inthe openings with urethane foam.

    As an added bonus, I can;t see how dirty the windows are when I'm working in the basement...

    Steve
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