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Help me prove my husband is wrong.

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Help me prove my husband is wrong.

Old 10-21-05, 06:46 PM
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Help me prove my husband is wrong.

My husband and I have been having a discussion about leaving the windows open and the heating bill. I think it's unhealthy to have the house closed up all the time and I like to leave some of the upstairs windows open just a touch. Also, both upstairs bathrooms have windows and no fans so during showers, I like to have the windows open so the bathrooms don't get all steamy and mildew faster.

My husband (who is totally wrong) thinks that having the windows open is going to drive our heating bill through the roof. Keep in mind that I always close the windows if it gets to be too cold outside. I also don't open them very much and there are curtains there too.

He thinks I'm being stubborn but I have to have fresh air! We have three cats and two kids and believe me, when this place gets shut tight for too long, there are not enough air fresheners in the state to make my place smell good. He says that if I want fresh air then to go outside!

So, slightly open windows....bad for the heating bill or good for the health?
Old 10-21-05, 06:53 PM
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The bathroom I can see.

But I would assume opening a window, especially upstairs will suck the heat out.

From the power compay website

Choose Energy Efficiency Windows
Windows are beautiful additions to your home, but they can waste energy by letting in drafts, drawing out heat in winter, and baking your home in summer. Choose windows with good insulation values, such as double and triple-paned windows. Some have an insulating gas (like argon) between the panes, which insulates better than air. There are also windows with special clear coatings, called "low-e" windows, which reflect heat. The frames and spacers between panes should also be considered. Wood, vinyl and fiberglass are better insulators than standard aluminum frames. New warm-edge spacers insulate better than normal wood, vinyl or fiberglass, which can conduct condensation around the edges of windows.

Last edited by kantonburg; 10-21-05 at 06:58 PM.
Old 10-21-05, 06:56 PM
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Oh man, I want to help, but you are so wrong....so very very wrong.

That sucks for you.
Old 10-21-05, 06:57 PM
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Here's some basic facts (which I'm sure she'll disagree with )

The house is two stories and roughly 1700 sq/ft. The two bathroom windows are upstairs. They're typically open about 1-4 inches. And usually left that way 24 hours a day. The bedroom window is also upstairs, opened about the same amount and also open about 24 hours a day.

When she says she shuts them when it get cold, I'd say it has to dip into the low 40's before she'll close them.

I have no problem cracking a window during a shower. That's a good thing. But not just leaving it open around the clock.

So those are the facts. Does leaving the windows open like this have a large effect on the heating bill or just raise it slightly?
Old 10-21-05, 06:58 PM
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Any opening in the house at all is going to drive up your heating costs somewhat. Properly insulating even tiny openings such as wall sockets can effect your heat loss.

Unfortunately your husband is correct. I assume you won't let him know
Edit: Nevermind, apparently he's going to know!
Old 10-21-05, 07:11 PM
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But the problem is with every window shut all the time the house gets very hot and stuffy, not to mention smelly.

I don't mind paying a few extra bucks a month to have some fresh air.
Old 10-21-05, 07:12 PM
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Uh, this is one of those arguments nobody will win. Will leaving the windows open a bit increase the heating bill? OF COURSE. Is some fresh air in the house better? OF COURSE (assuming it's not smoggy air).

But how much bigger will the heating bill be? How much benefit does the fresh air provide? The first one can be empirically determined, but at the moment is an unknown. The second can't even be empirically determined. So you'll never be able to weigh the true costs/benefits.

BUT, you could decide to keep all the windows closed this winter and compare the heating bill to last winter's, that at least will tell you something.
Old 10-21-05, 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
Oh man, I want to help, but you are so wrong....so very very wrong.

That sucks for you.
Fine. You can sleep in your car now for the otter meet.


Old 10-21-05, 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Kittydreamer
But the problem is with every window shut all the time the house gets very hot and stuffy, not to mention smelly.

I don't mind paying a few extra bucks a month to have some fresh air.
Stuffy and smelly, I can buy. But hot? Isn't that a function of the thermostat? If it gets hot, turn the thermostat down!
Old 10-21-05, 07:14 PM
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The thermostat is down. It gets hot here during the day time while my husband is at work. I think I should be able to open the windows during the day time, especially when it's bright and sunny out. Like right now, it's 71 outside and almost 75 in my house. It's hot and stuffy. So I opened the windows to let some fresh air in but will close them tonight.
Old 10-21-05, 07:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Kittydreamer
The thermostat is down. It gets hot here during the day time while my husband is at work. I think I should be able to open the windows during the day time, especially when it's bright and sunny out. Like right now, it's 71 outside and almost 75 in my house. It's hot and stuffy. So I opened the windows to let some fresh air in but will close them tonight.
Ummm, if the thermostat is down, ie the heat is off, opening windows will have no effect on the heating bill, right?
Old 10-21-05, 07:17 PM
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If the heater is off, open the windows. If the heater is on, close the windows. Is it that difficult? If you get chilly, put on a sweater.
Old 10-21-05, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by renaldow
If the heater is off, open the windows. If the heater is on, close the windows. Is it that difficult? If you get chilly, put on a sweater.
I think the problem is that I like the windows open at night, too, at least in our bedroom.
Old 10-21-05, 07:19 PM
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I love opening the windows. In the winter I open them for a shorter period of time, not all day but maybe an hour or two, just to let a breeze pass through. A house grows so much mold and crap that you can't see or smell and gets all dusty and bugs literally grow in your mattress and pillows. I feel it's unsanitary to never let fresh air in.
Old 10-21-05, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by LurkerDan
Ummm, if the thermostat is down, ie the heat is off, opening windows will have no effect on the heating bill, right?
That's what I've been trying to tell him! Right now our thermostat is set very low, like 65 I think. It has to get pretty cold at night before our heat will come on. Our house is fairly new (92) and is PGE certified energy efficient.
Old 10-21-05, 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Kittydreamer
Like right now, it's 71 outside and almost 75 in my house.


If it's warm outside, I don't mind the windows being open. I thought we were talking about when it's like 50 degrees outside. Otherwise wouldn't the question be "Does opening the windows when it's warm outside and the furnace is off have any effect on our heating bill?" A slightly less interesting question to be sure.
Old 10-21-05, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Kittydreamer
That's what I've been trying to tell him! Right now our thermostat is set very low, like 65 I think. It has to get pretty cold at night before our heat will come on. Our house is fairly new (92) and is PGE certified energy efficient.

Well if you said that in the first place

If he can't figure out that the heat doesn't come on till it gets to the selected temperature you need to find a new husband.
Old 10-21-05, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Kittydreamer
I think the problem is that I like the windows open at night and make his sorry ass sleep nearest the open window, too, at least in our bedroom.
Fixed.
Old 10-21-05, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by kantonburg
Well if you said that in the first place

If he can't figure out that the heat doesn't come on till it gets to the selected temperature you need to find a new husband.
I know the heating bill isn't effected when the furnace isn't running. Don't let her derail this thread with half-truths and gorilla dust. Is there any effect when it's 50 degrees out and the furnace is running?
Old 10-21-05, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Kittydreamer
I think the problem is that I like the windows open at night and make his sorry ass sleep on the couch downstairs.
Originally Posted by MEJHarrison
Fixed.
You're damn right it's fixed.




Old 10-21-05, 07:29 PM
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Just popping in to say I agree with Kitty!

No, seriously, I'd rather pay a little extra and have it NOT be stuffy. I leave my window at home (upstairs) cracked open during the day, even when it's freezing out, because I need the fresh air. Warm air that's all stuffy isn't worth it.
Old 10-21-05, 07:29 PM
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Where can I get some of that gorilla dust?
Old 10-21-05, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by shoppingbear
Just popping in to say I agree with Kitty!

No, seriously, I'd rather pay a little extra and have it NOT be stuffy.
So the real question is are you paying a little extra or a lot extra? I'd gladly pay a little extra to <s>shut her up</s> put an end to this argument. I'm just concerned that it's more than a little.
Old 10-21-05, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by shoppingbear
Just popping in to say I agree with Kitty!

No, seriously, I'd rather pay a little extra and have it NOT be stuffy. I leave my window at home (upstairs) cracked open during the day, even when it's freezing out, because I need the fresh air. Warm air that's all stuffy isn't worth it.
See? This is what I mean. If you keep a place closed up 24/7/365 then it's going to be all stuffy and nasty smelling. I like my air fresh.
Old 10-21-05, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by MEJHarrison
So the real question is are you paying a little extra or a lot extra? I'd gladly pay a little extra to <s>shut her up</s> put an end to this argument. I'm just concerned that it's more than a little.
I'd gladly pay extra for a cot to put in the computer room for you to sleep on since it's always hot in that room.

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