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adiós central heating?

November 29, 2012
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Although at first I was thrilled about finally having central heating and air-conditioning in the new casa az, after one and a half winters here I’m not sure I can afford such luxury. And although I’m not actually sure if this new method will prove any more economical, it’s worth a go. To wit… I have opted to try using a wall-mounted electric space heater and an oil-filled electric radiator in my livingroom (which is really the only room that needs heating during the day) to see if that makes a difference. I used both of these in the old casa az, but there I was able to close off the living room, though I didn’t have double-glazed windows. As you can see, Luna is very keen to show her appreciation for anything that gives off heat.

It’s weird because back in Canada, and even when I lived in England, it was just a given that you had to pay crazy amounts of money to stay warm in winter. I think because here an extra sweater or scarf can actually make a real difference – even in mid-January – it’s often preferable to do that than pay more. Gone are those -30º days when I would walk around my carpeted Canadian home barefoot and in short sleeves. And good thing too, because that was just stupid (come to think of it). It’s not so much the extra sweaters I mind, it’s that first getting out of bed moment, that from now until February will just get more and more painful.

How do you stay warm in winter without cranking up the heat?

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11 Comments leave one →
  1. November 29, 2012 6:48 pm

    I have a lap cat! (And oil central heating, which is about half the cost of electricity per KWh and hot water is ‘free’).

  2. November 29, 2012 7:21 pm

    Living on our mountain in Spain, it’s hard to keep warm in the winter! We have the usual array of fireplace and portable gas fire, but it’s still…cold. I usually wear thermals in the winter, topped with warm socks, slippers, fleeces etc. Then cover with a blanket on the couch.

    So how do I stay warm in winter? I don’t! :-(

  3. November 29, 2012 7:55 pm

    I have gas central heating and use it. I shower in the evening rather than the morning so I don’t waste money heating the house when I’m going out all day in a hour’s time, so that keeps it down a bit. Also I pay on the budget plan whereby I pay a set amount every month all year, paying over the odds in summer and building up a pot for the winter. That seems to work ok. Also my cavity walls & loft have been filled with insulation.

    It’s still a pricy business, and I seem to be feeling it more this year – probably down to the fact I have 21 pounds less fat keeping me warm due to a so far sucessful diet!

  4. November 29, 2012 11:26 pm

    Well, I have to keep the place warm, because I work on massage clients here. But for the cold corner (which is alas the business side of my office) those oil filled radiators work a treat. The small one I use in here has a timer set so I never forget and leave it operating. And when I was forced to replace my central heat system two years ago — after twenty years the bearings made a noise like a carburetor in a clothes dryer — I got a programmable thermostat so I don’t use the central when I don’t need it either. I feel quite spoiled that the house is warm when I get up, cools off while I’m at the gym, warms up for customers and cools down to nudge me into bed, all through the miracle of electronics.

  5. November 30, 2012 3:26 am

    Our house has one room, over the garage, that doesn’t get well heated by our furnace. We have a woodstove in there and in the evenings we enjoy wood fires.

  6. December 1, 2012 6:22 pm

    So much for the “space heating” idea. When it’s 15º in the apartment the space heaters take about 2 hours to get the living room up to – maybe! – 18º. So today I finally put on the central heating and within an hour the apartment was a comfy 20º. Though I shudder at what this is going to cost…

  7. December 4, 2012 3:14 pm

    Plan B seems to be working! I turn on the central heating in the morning to get the apartment up to about 20º, then switch it off, close the doors surrounding the living room and then put on the radiator and wall-mounted space heater… and that seems to keep things at about 19º. Not quite as warm as I’d like (21º would be good) but I think it’s do-able. Of course whether this is saving me money still remains to be seen. The open stairway up to the second floor is a real heat sucker upper…

  8. January 16, 2013 6:54 am

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