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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    205

    A 173.00 electric bill

    for a 1650 ft2 house. Household trying to save energy. This sucks.

    Help.....Insulation? Time for a change out? I freakin' frustrated w/this crap.

  2. #2

    Confused

    Quote Originally Posted by RomulanSpy View Post
    for a 1650 ft2 house. Household trying to save energy. This sucks.

    Help.....Insulation? Time for a change out? I freakin' frustrated w/this crap.

    I see ppl paying a lot more than that in summer time.
    what's wrong with it?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    205

    Local utility only charges .08325/kwhr

    Quote Originally Posted by yunrowlett View Post
    I see ppl paying a lot more than that in summer time.
    what's wrong with it?
    and the bad thing is this isn't even the hottest part of the summer

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    26
    We would need a bit more information--

    How old is your unit
    How much insulation R-19. R-30, none
    How about windows
    Where do you live
    What do you set you T-stat to
    How old is your house
    Is your duct work sealed

    There are a ton of variables you have to look at when it comes to energy cost/savings.

    BTW- Here where I live that is not a bad bill.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    68,758
    Dude, that bites.

    Mine is no where close to that. I got 1650 sq ft. I set back to 76 on milder temp days during the day, usually keep it at 72 all other times. Including the heat wave we had 3 weeks ago.

    112 bucks.
    Contractor locator map

    How-to-apply-for-Professional

    How many times must one fix something before it is fixed?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    205

    Live near Tupelo MS

    Quote Originally Posted by Shark207 View Post
    We would need a bit more information--

    How old is your unit
    How much insulation R-19. R-30, none
    How about windows
    Where do you live
    What do you set you T-stat to
    How old is your house
    Is your duct work sealed

    There are a ton of variables you have to look at when it comes to energy cost/savings.

    BTW- Here where I live that is not a bad bill.
    T-stat set back to about 80 during day. Run it down to 70 at night.

    Rarely runs during the day, cycles on/off alot at night

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    63
    Hello again RS,
    Jax1 here.

    Been there, done that 2 yrs ago. I've some good experience in reducing electric bills for my friends and neighbors. Our rate jumps 5 cents per kwh a yr, currently at 20 cents. I'm living in a 35 yr old house that was built when electricity was cheaper than insulation. Give some details on your situation and certainly we can get your bill lower or double your money back

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Round Rock
    Posts
    3,650
    If you only have insulation to the top of the joists, that is only 4-6 inches. That is your problem. I'm not very familiar with insulation and the R values associated with it, but most homes have at least 18" or so of insulation.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    205

    I do believe you're right.

    Quote Originally Posted by bmathews View Post
    If you only have insulation to the top of the joists, that is only 4-6 inches. That is your problem. I'm not very familiar with insulation and the R values associated with it, but most homes have at least 18" or so of insulation.
    I think we are woefully short on insulation. That will be remedied this week or next.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    DC Metro Area (MD)
    Posts
    3,371
    It seems like "dude" is the new key word around here, so:

    Dude! I wish I could get a bill that low! Though for your size home, it may be normal to have bills in that range. I'm lucky to get under $300, and winter bills tend to be higher. I'm sure I could lower my bill if I was smarter with my electric usage. Computers running all day, lights left on, TV, A/C at 74 all day, you name it... My house is bigger, though (around 3500 sq. ft. in total). Electric is more expensive here, too.

    I think more insulation would help you, as would a new, high-efficiency system. You could also see where you could cut down on electric usage throughout the house, like lights, electronics, etc. Is your A/C oversized and short cycling?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    63
    Quote Originally Posted by RomulanSpy View Post
    I think we are woefully short on insulation. That will be remedied this week or next.
    8 cents/kwh and $175. Over 2100 kwh! Good golly Miss Molly! I used half of that last month comfortably in a 1750 sq ft 35 yr old house with same age AC in hot humid Houston. Unless your climate is much worse, improvements can be made.

    Before, Before, Before adding insulation, check and fix other problems. Since I read a book on this, I'm an expert, of course. If outside temp is less than 100 and your attic is more than 10 degrees above outside, go to your local library and get a book on weatherization and insulation. Here are some brief tips the book will explain in more detail:

    For a hot climate, the 3 most important things are attic related.
    Ventilate, Seal, then and only then Insulate.

    Ventilate.
    Hot climates need 1 sq in ventilation per sq foot of attic, equally balanced between soffits and peak(preferably ridge vents there). That's UNOBSTRUCTED NET ventilation area. Deduct screens, louvers and other obstructions. Check the attic to see if those vents are not blocked. I've seen soffit vents that lead nowhere or were covered in insulation. Avoid attic ventilation fans, if at all possible.

    Seal.
    Without sealing ALL attic leaks, extra insulation only filters the cold air going into the attic and insulates very little. Move the existing insulation and check plumbing and electrical drops, around the chimney, ceiling light fixtures, dropped ceilings over cabinets in kitchens and baths, sheetrock separation from the framing that leaves tiny running gaps that add up to a big leak. Attic doors, knee walls, cathedral ceilings are big losers. Check for duct leaks while up there. Feel for cold air around all ducts and registers with the AC running. Checking at night with house lights on makes small gaps easily visible.

    Insulate.
    Add rafter baffles to keep your soffit vents clear of the added insulation (obvious, but often overlooked even in new construction).
    Build dams around things that shouldn't have insulation on them.
    Radiant barriers have much good written about them.
    Cellulose is cheap and safe for DIY. With a little help from your friends, it's not too difficult. It takes 3 people.

    1 in the attic spraying the insulation,

    1 to load the blower. The hopper empties quickly, very quickly. The 3rd person can assist the loader by keeping a supply of insulation bales nearby. Keep a shut off switch near the loader if the loader can't keep up. An empty nozzle makes a big mess in the attic. That blast of empty air turns a neat layer of insulation into a snow storm that lasts all day.

    1 for communication if the blower doesn't come with shut off controls at the nozzle. The attic person will need to shut off the blower when moving to another location. We tried walkie-talkies. The blower is too loud for the loader to hear.

    Big box stores lend insulation blowers FREE! with purchase of insulation. It's messy, but easy to do in a couple of hours. This over 60 geezer did it in July, in Houston!


    Other benefits:
    While checking for air leaks, I discovered a rusted water pipe about to burst, cracked framing, loose vent, broken bug screen, and wiring problems. All problems that were soon to become major expensive problems.

    All expenses were $500. Saved it back in 1 cooling season. Maybe saved more in the heating season, but I blinked and it was over.

    Enough things to get you started.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Skokie , IL near chicago
    Posts
    1,139

    high bills

    Quote Originally Posted by bmathews View Post
    If you only have insulation to the top of the joists, that is only 4-6 inches. That is your problem. I'm not very familiar with insulation and the R values associated with it, but most homes have at least 18" or so of insulation.
    definitely more insulation . Are u using an attic exhaust fan , that'll help vent that high temp pressing through that little insulation........Jack

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    205

    Jack I've considered it

    Quote Originally Posted by rojacman View Post
    definitely more insulation . Are u using an attic exhaust fan , that'll help vent that high temp pressing through that little insulation........Jack
    and I'm gonna talk w/my insulator when he comes for the job.

    I may install an attic fan next summer along w/that shiny new VS heat pump.

    For now, gotta get some insulation up there.

    Thanxs for the heads up on the fan. I had forgotten about that part of my plan

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