The time has arrived once again. I moaned and dragged my feet, but come last Monday I had to give in. It hit 17 degrees Celsius, and I turned on my heat. Fear not my automatic thermostat is set and my car port is stocked with wood. This coming winter's goal: use less electricity than last year.
I'm hoping to accomplish that via a number of steps I've taken in the recent past.
-I went conservative with my temperature setting, 20 when I'm home and awake, 18 otherwise.
-Heat with wood on weekends. This is completely uncharted territory for me but $280 bought me a cord of wood and we'll see how long it lasts and how efficient the stove is.
-I turned down my water heater.
-I got carpets and slippers so that I'll feel warmer on my wood floors.
-Sweaters are my friend.
My last utilities bill (water, sewage and electricity) was $98 which is a record low for me just prior to the cold season and the slow yet inevitable climb upwards in cost.
It was a bit of a debate before I could come to a decision on my wood stove. It takes more effort to run than my furnace and it costs me an extra $80 a month in insurance so I wasn't sure if it was worth it. I've decided to give it a go for a number of reasons.
-My central heat isn't very effective in the basement which makes half my house less useable in the winter
-I think the ambiance might be cool
-It might save me money (never know until you try)
-It is a sustainable source of heat
-It won't go out of commission unless I let it. (Unlike electricity)
I do have a fond memory of my mom reheating canned soup over our wood stove during a power outage as a kid. In a country that can experience temperamental weather having a backup source of heat is certainly a good safety measure.