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Using timeswitch or thermostat?

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As a family we have always controlled our heating in the winter with the thermostat, turning up and down when going out or overnight, therefore always maintaining a minimum temp. On the principle that not heating up from scratch everytime is cheaper but am wondering if this is wrong and we should be using the timeswitch so having it on at set times. Anybody have any thoughts on this??

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  • Eydon
    Eydon Posts: 599 Forumite
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    MWT_luton wrote: »
    As a family we have always controlled our heating in the winter with the thermostat, turning up and down when going out or overnight, therefore always maintaining a minimum temp. On the principle that not heating up from scratch everytime is cheaper but am wondering if this is wrong and we should be using the timeswitch so having it on at set times. Anybody have any thoughts on this??

    Why not install a thermostatic timeswitch - this enables you to program different minimum termparatures at different times of the day - best of both worlds.
  • Cardew
    Cardew Posts: 29,042 Forumite
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    MWT_luton wrote: »
    As a family we have always controlled our heating in the winter with the thermostat, turning up and down when going out or overnight, therefore always maintaining a minimum temp. On the principle that not heating up from scratch everytime is cheaper but am wondering if this is wrong and we should be using the timeswitch so having it on at set times. Anybody have any thoughts on this??

    There have been countless threads on this subject.

    You principle is flawed; indeed totally wrong.

    The two 'classic' examples are:

    1. Would you leave a kettle simmering all day as it is cheaper than heating it up from cold?

    2. If you were going away for a year would you leave your heating on rather than let the house get cold and having to heat it from scratch?

    How about a month? a week? a day? an hour? all exactly the same principle. Anytime the heating is off you are saving money.

    That said if you turn the temperature on the thermostat low enough so it doesn't demand heat, your boiler will not fire up much as there will be no circulation of water.

    However as the water in the boiler cools it will still fire up intermttently, so it is cheaper to use the timer.
  • MWT_luton
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    Many thanks for your detailed response. Sorry if there have previously been many threads on this I was unaware of this and as this is the first time I have ever used a forum of any kind don't know how to get to them. Your advice is very helpful even if you have left me feeling slightly chastised.
  • Magentasue
    Magentasue Posts: 4,229 Forumite
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    MWTluton, I can see why you feel chastised! I know when I found this forum, I found the search facility confusing. If you haven't found it, go on to a board (i.e. not on a thread like this but one the main Gas and Elec board, for example) and use 'Search this thread' which is just underneath all the page numbers on the right hand side.

    We always used the timer but now have one of the programmers described in post #2 so that it is always on but is set to come on when the temp drops low (set at 15deg now) when we're out.
  • Cardew
    Cardew Posts: 29,042 Forumite
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    MWT_luton wrote: »
    Many thanks for your detailed response. Sorry if there have previously been many threads on this I was unaware of this and as this is the first time I have ever used a forum of any kind don't know how to get to them. Your advice is very helpful even if you have left me feeling slightly chastised.

    It wasn't in any way an attempt to chastise.

    This is one of a number of 'Urban myths' that keep getting repeated, and to be fair the principle you outlined might appear initially to have some merit to the layman.

    Don't be deterred, and keep posting!!
  • JohalaReewi
    JohalaReewi Posts: 2,614 Forumite
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    Eydon wrote: »
    Why not install a thermostatic timeswitch - this enables you to program different minimum termparatures at different times of the day - best of both worlds.

    I second that. The one I got was a digistat and replaced the manual thermostat on the wall. I was then able to program different temperatures for different times of the day. The savings on gas were huge.
  • Ken68
    Ken68 Posts: 6,825 Forumite
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    Hi Luton, welcome to the board..not too sure how 'heat going to cold' fits in, makes a mockery of zone heating so perhaps also time heating.
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