Archive for January, 2009

gas bill

Saturday, January 17th, 2009

I noticed my gas bill is about $300 month lately, and tried to understand it.  I have 2 zones in the house, and on weekdays run the downstairs from 7pm through 10pm  at 64 degrees, and the upstairs at 62 degrees from 10pm through 7 am.  The rest of the time the thermostats are set to 53 degrees.  Might sound very cold, but with the upstairs zone, I have 2 vents in my bedroom, and if the door is closed 62 degrees in the hallway is at least 67 in the room.  the gas bill seems high.  I had bought these probes over the summer, and meant to do something with them at the beach house, to make sure things didn’t freeze, and maybe try to understand how tenants used the air conditioning. in any case here’s a 24 hour snapshot of temperatures.  the first chart is the outside temperature, and you can see it’s been a cold day.
outside temperature
The interesting thing with the vent temperature is that it’s going on 3 hours before the setting.  The setting was 64 at 7pm and the system is trying to make sure the temperature gets there at 7pm, so the heat is on at 4pm.
vent temperature
This is the den temperature, which is probably the coldest room in the house.
temperature inside the den
I was thinking the thermostat was more like the old style clock type, where you could put a peg in the clock to switch from one temperature, to another at a fixed time, instead this system is too smart and I thinking running longer than I need it.

snow

Saturday, January 17th, 2009

Haven’t posted anything in a while,  and that’s probably a good thing.  The number of embarrassing incidents are slowing down.  Did sign up for facebook around the holidays and it is interesting.  I’m communicating with people I haven’t thought about or talked to since high school.  The “wall” concept where everything you say is available for many to see, reminds me allot of the CB radios many years ago. you’d have a conversation, but anybody could hear it, if they wanted. we got a couple inches of snow last week, and it was the first test of my tractor and plow.  Bought a used simplicity tractor from a friends cousin.  It’s build in the 70’s but still runs very well.  did the flat part of the driveway without a problem and started plowing the 130 foot section that is on a hill and ends at route 206 (highway).  going down the driveway worked as I hoped.  tried to back up and the wheels just spun.    my only option to to get out and push, while the tractor was in reverse.  worked ok, until the tractor got some footing and started to take off.  luckily it only went about 5 feet and got stuck in the snow.   for a second, I thought I’d be chasing it all they way up the driveway and trying to catch it before it hit the glass door of the garage….