High Electrical bill - Appears to be heatpump problem.
Tenant complains that electrical bill jumped 3 times as much as month before, even thou noone was . 2 level Townhouse - All Electric property- Central Heat and Air system. Has heatpump with zoned programmable thermostats (2 thermos, 1 up, 1 down). The tenant state they turned the upstairs thermostat off, and had the lower floor thermostat to 71 degrees. They say that the outside unit runs constantly, the only way to get it to stop is to turn off the downstairs thermostat. The townhouse was built in 2003, but the outside unit was replaced in 2008.
Could this be because they turned off the upstairs thermostat? Should I try to replace the downstairs thermostat?
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This past week I changed out an old hot air furnace in a rental unit that made me question why the tenant did not go to the owner and offer to pay more rent in exchange for getting the furnace changed out sooner. If you are a renter that is paying the gas bill, then you need to think about this.
The hot air furnace was at least 60 years old. It had been coal fired furnace that was converted to gas many decades ago. The pilot light of this beast was more of a torch than a pilot light. When the thermostat called for heat the flame roared for 15 minutes before the exterior blower unit that was added when the furnace was converted to gas, started up to move air through the furnace and into the house.
As I was starting up the new unit, which took up less than 1/3 of the space of the old beast, the renter came and sat down on the basement steps looking on in amazement. How would that little thing make enough heat for the house? A few minutes later those questions were put to rest very quickly.
After starting the new furnace and burning off the oil that always smokes up the house a bit on a new startup the new little unit had the house warm as toast and was shutting down. Wow, that took less time than the old beast took to just warm up!
The renter related to me how that the old furnace cost over one hundred dollars a month just to run the pilot over the summer months. The wintertime heating bills were many times higher than that. The difference between the bills of the old unit and the bills that will be coming now will be unbelievable. A savings of 40-50% is not at all out of the question.
Now, if you are renting and are paying the bill to feed an old monster of a heating system, I suggest that you make a proposal to your landlord. Offer to pay a bit more rent in exchange for a new heating system. Not only will you decrease your gas bills enough to pay some extra rent and still come out ahead, but you will have the peace of mind that you have a safer heating system under the roof that you also live under.
As far as the cord being warm that is pretty normal as is the power consumption depending on the temp. setting. However I think that much of a increase is excessive so I think if it was me I would return it to walmart and try to get a replacement. It has been my experience with walmart that they generally are quite good at in store replacement within 90 days.That way you could have a basis for comparison. Thank you.
These electric resistance heaters will use allot of electricity. My suggestion is to get rid of it. It uses more electricity than a regular heater. Too often people believe that these are more effecient, but the fact is they are not. That would be a good reason the electric bill went up. It costs about 100 a month on average to use on of these so if you have 2 then it costs 200 a month.
If you're talking about the outside fan, look where the wire goes into the outside unit. The capacitor will be somewhere near the circuit board and will be round or oval and metal or plastic. If you're talking about the inside unit it will be with the electrical control in the air handler. Write down where the wires go. The terminals on the capacitor will be marked and for the outside unit you will either have 1 that runs both the fan and compressor or a seperate one for each. If you have 1 that runs both the wires must be reconnected to the right terminals. They will be marked COM, FAN, HERM(stands for compressor). Take the old one with you to get a new one. Let me know what you find.
Looks like an older system. Tighten all of your electrical connections. Inspect all of the low voltage wiring for any insulation cracks or other damage. The problem you describe sounds like something is either "shorting" or breaking down electrically. Unless the technician can catch it while he/she is there, it will be difficult to determine exactly what is happening. You might get lucky and resolve it yourself by tightening all electrical connections and reinsulating (use electrical tape) any damaged low voltage wire connections. If you continue to experience problems, get the tech. Hopefully the last company you used will be willing to work with you on the bill considering they were unable to "catch" it during the last visit.
Without being there with toolbox in hand, I hope you find this information very helpful moving forward. :-)
yes go into electric heat for awhile. sometimes a heatpump will run constantlly when temps outside are not high enough./em heat mode untill temps rise or unit recovers.your unit should of gone into hot-gas defrost this maybe what your hearing. but remember electric heat is expensive to operate go back to your heatpump mode after system has a chance to recover.
The Empire DV units have been in production for over 25 years with very few problems and no class action suites. Although the heaters do get hot, so don't wood stoves, kitchen ranges, etc... I suppose they could put a sticker on the cover stating not to put anything on the heater, but I suppose it would burn off eventually. I would not worry about a statement of a faulty furnace because he/she would be fighting with a very large company with plenty of lawyers on the payroll. It should be expected that a heater will produce heat. If the tenant is concerned, remove the heater, install electric heat and let them pay the electric bill. I am sorry but your tenant needs to start using some common sense! There are no safeties built into this unit to detect when someone puts something flammable on it and I know of no heater that does. Remember, you did not make the heater, you did not spend thousands of dollars getting it tested and approval from UL, you may have purchased the heater and had it installed to provide a low cost alternative to other heating equipment but it is not you that is responsible for what has happened. If I were you I would hand deliver a note to each tenant who has this type of heater alerting them of the risk of damage if they left gloves, hats, buckets, etc.. on the heater and have them sign that they read it. The furnace is designed to be safe, burn clean and heat. Good luck.
The biggest wasters of electrical energy are Heat and A/c, water heaters,dryers and ranges. The more you insulate the less you have to cool or heat. If you live in a warm climate, consider installing an attic fan that runs on a thermostat or timer. During the summer allow it to run, during winter turn it off. Ceiling fans in rooms that are occupied create the illusion of being cooler, allowing the thermostat to be turned up.I'm not sure of the exact numbers but any thermostat setting on your a/c below 78 is more inefficient so try kicking the a/c up and the heat down. I'm a Florida boy so I can't tell you much about baseboard heaters. I know that anything that heats things up cost a lot in energy.
Consider installing a hot water heater timer. Commonly called a "Little Grey Box". Whenever your water heater is not actually being used it is still heating the water. A big waster. Once installed set the timer to cycle the water heater off during times when you commonly don't use it. Overnight,when your at work etc....
Somewhat antiquated, but a clothesline always uses 100% less energy than a clothes dryer. :) Short of this, try to fill the dryer all the way and make sure your dryer vent and lint trap are clear.
Microwaves draw 1/3 the energy of a range and run for 1/10 of the time. Microwave as many things as you can. In our house we have started microwaving canned veggies and boxed side dishes and such.
These are the big ones I've done at my house. A lot of the other things seemed to be more work than they are worth. Some actually end up costing you more if you don't own the house for decades.
There are many sites you can visit such as your local power company and possibly your local government pages.
Good luck. I'm in the same boat with the high power bill.