When natural gas prices went through the roof I took a look at our heating system. We have a single central forced air system that supplies our entire house. This isn’t terribly unreasonable considering that we live in a single story ranch (no basement, no steps at all). But, even with a programmable electronic thermostat, I felt we could do much better energy-wise if I picked up some electric heaters and used them with timers in various rooms of the house.
I am looking at replacing the furnace / air conditioner now and will probably set up either two zones (with separate units) or set up a system that controls where the heat is being directed throughout the day so that we are not heating unused rooms unnecessarily.
I have this DeLonghi Safeheat radiator (rated for 1500W)in the master bedroom attached to an Intermatic Time-All (rated for 1750W). The timer will kick on an hour or so before we head to bed and it will turn off a couple of hours after we settle in. It again turns on an hour or so before we get up. The heater itself has its own thermostat so it won’t bother to turn on if the room is already warm enough. In this climate the morning temperature outdoors is just as likely to be 35 degrees as it is to be 50 degrees.
The DeLonghi has two switches, one supposedly rated for 600W, the other supposedly for 900W so you can have a low-med-high arrangement by using one, the other or both of them. Interestingly, when I had the unit hooked up to my Kill A Watt, I found that the 600 Watt switch was drawing about 700W and the 900W setting was drawing about 761W. So the tuning isn’t quite so fine as you might think. Also of note that both switches on consumed 1315W. Not really sure what that tells you.
Elapsed time: 1041 hrs (about 43 days)
Measured Minimum Consumption (Watts): 700
Measured Maximum Consumption (Watts): 1315
Actual (for duration of test): $13.14
Annual: $110.00 <– Take with a grain of salt. We only use the heater for about 5 months a year.