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  • The cost of heat

    Do you track your power bills? I would really love to hear what it would cost you to heat your garage/shop day and night to 15 or 20 degrees for a solid month.

    Anyone who could provide that information to the forum would certainly be appreciated. We always talk about heat or no heat and rust on surfaces but I don't think anyone has ever supplied the heating cost per month. I heat 24/7 but never look at the bill so I can't tell what it costs other than to say it isn't very much. Obviously insulation would be a huge factor and I don't think I would want to ask someone for cost if they have no insulation.
    "Do it Right!"
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  • #2

    Re: The cost of heat

    I tracked mine a couple of years ago as I had just installed the electric heat. I use a programmable tstat that tracks how long it is on and then I figured out how much it costs.
    My shop is 22X32 insulated with 4" of sprayed foam single pane windows. The cost was $301.00 for the season.
    Jerome
    Canada's South Coast

    Port Colborne On.
    Every loaf of bread is a tragic tale of grains that could've become beer.......but didn't....

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    • #3

      Re: The cost of heat

      How long was the season Jerome. Maybe we could narrow it down to a per month cost. That's helpful info for sure and I think your shop is 2 floors isn't it? Electric heat versus gas or oil is something to consider as well as space. Wood burning is another option but you would have to know how many cords you used in a month.

      I use radiant tube gas heat in a 575 square foot space and a longer tube in a 1080 sq. ft. space. Both spaces are fully insulated.
      "Do it Right!"

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      • #4

        Re: The cost of heat

        I have a geothermal heat pump that heats my two detached garages all winter, 7C when not in use, 15C when in use. One shop is 2000 sq ft (1000’ downstairs, 1000’ upstairs) the other is 625 sq ft. I also heat a 2300 sq ft century home with a second heat pump and cool it in the summer. My electric bill averages $300 per month. Because I have only the one meter I cannot say what the individual building cost is for heat. Never a concern with rust on cast iron surfaces.
        Erik

        Canada's Island Paradise - Prince Edward Island

        Proud member of the Wadkin Blockhead Club

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        • #5

          Re: The cost of heat

          Originally posted by ErikM View Post
          I have a geothermal heat pump that heats my two detached garages all winter, 7C when not in use, 15C when in use. One shop is 2000 sq ft (1000’ downstairs, 1000’ upstairs) the other is 625 sq ft. I also heat a 2300 sq ft century home with a second heat pump and cool it in the summer. My electric bill averages $300 per month. Because I have only the one meter I cannot say what the individual building cost is for heat. Never a concern with rust on cast iron surfaces.
          That would be real good info if you could separate it Erik. Not sure Geo thermal would be efficient everywhere in Canada but too bad you can't separate it.
          "Do it Right!"

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          • #6

            Re: The cost of heat

            I have a 32' by 32' garage with ceilings sloping from 10' to 16' on one side and 16' to 20' on the other (4' knee wall with clerestory windows back to front in the middle); key point here is a very large cubic volume in the building. R22 in the walls, R40 in the ceiling, generous windows are double pane standard. 3 R16 garage doors; I have yet to do the work to seal the various openings along the garage doors. I have radiant heat in the floors heated by a whole house tankless water heater that has 2 60amp 220 circuits. I pay around $.12/kw for electricity and set the thermostat at 5C, use a wood stove to raise the internal temperature when I work in the winter.

            The December through April period costs me about $500, monthly bills vary depending on outside temperature.

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            • #7

              Re: The cost of heat

              Originally posted by Rusty View Post
              I heat 24/7 but never look at the bill so I can't tell what it costs other than to say it isn't very much.
              You should be able to get back bills from your gas supplier if you don't file them.

              So many variables it's hard to compare with others.

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              • #8

                Re: The cost of heat

                Originally posted by Rusty View Post

                That would be real good info if you could separate it Erik. Not sure Geo thermal would be efficient everywhere in Canada but too bad you can't separate it.
                Geo thermal should have the same efficiency anywhere except on permafrost! I have worked on buildings in the arctic with refrigerated floors to keep from melting the permafrost.
                Rob

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                • #9

                  Re: The cost of heat

                  Originally posted by TedBrown View Post
                  I. I pay around $.12/kw for electricity and set the thermostat at 5C, use a wood stove to raise the internal temperature when I work in the winter.

                  The December through April period costs me about $500, monthly bills vary depending on outside temperature.
                  12 cents/kwh seems very high for Quebec? I pay 4.6 down to -12C then 28 cents below that temp, plus tax.
                  Rob

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                  • #10

                    Re: The cost of heat

                    That's true Jim. I just thought it might be interesting to see how expensive or inexpensive it is to run 24/7 at a temperature you could easily work in. I'm not in favour of up and down with the thermostat.

                    I must admit Ted's cost at $100.00 a month for a plus 5 temp is high in my opinion but I have no clue how much hydro costs in Quebec or in fact if a tankless system is all that effective. So there is a perfect example of variables to consider.
                    "Do it Right!"

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                    • #11

                      Re: The cost of heat

                      Comparison is difficult because I use my garage mostly for mechanical (small engine) work, but only as a part time income as I am mostly retired. Most of my woodworking happens during the summer months. I probably use my garage one or two days a week in the winter.
                      Also, our weather is not really consistent. The last two winters started late, were warmer than normal and ended relatively early as far as snow melt was concerned. This year we have rarely got above -20'C during the day for most of January and most nights have been between -30'c and -40-'c.
                      My shop is 20' x 25' (roughly) with 4" stud walls insulated by pink fibreglass. The outside siding is 1" diagonal boards covered by steel sheets. The inside is 3/4" painted particle board. The ceiling has about 14" of cellulose blown in. I heat with a 50kbtu Mr Heater propane hanging unit. I have one window about three feet square on the sunny south side and a 7' x 9' insulated garage door with an insulated steel man door (both of these facing the west wind) . I have an unheated garage built onto the east side and my neighbour's garage shelters me from the north wind.

                      I keep my garage at 10'c all the time and warm it to about 20'c when I work in it.

                      The previous two years my propane bill is probably about $500 - $700 (I don't really look at the bills too hard). This year I am already there and we have Feb and Mar to go..... as I said ... hard to compare .. but that's what I got.

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                      • #12

                        Re: The cost of heat

                        Originally posted by Rusty View Post

                        That would be real good info if you could separate it Erik. Not sure Geo thermal would be efficient everywhere in Canada but too bad you can't separate it.
                        Each building is on its own zone Rusty, so I set them as I want them. It is very nice to have a warm concrete floor in the shop when it is -20 outside. I use water out of one well and put it back into another, and groundwater temps here vary less than 0.1 C from summer to winter so very efficient no matter how cold it gets outside. I have a wood furnace that can heat the house also as a backup in case of extended hydro outage, and kerosene heaters to keep the shop above freezing if required. Very reliable electrical power fortunately.
                        Erik

                        Canada's Island Paradise - Prince Edward Island

                        Proud member of the Wadkin Blockhead Club

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                        • #13

                          Re: The cost of heat

                          Rusty, you have to do calculations that include you local temperatures and what insulating values you have. It will give you a btu value which can be priced for different heat generator types.

                          Heat pumps utilizing ground heat will work well in cold temperatures. Air to air heat pumps are limited by colder temperatures.
                          Egon
                          from
                          The South Shore, Nova Scotia

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                          • #14

                            Re: The cost of heat

                            Originally posted by iamtooler View Post

                            12 cents/kwh seems very high for Quebec? I pay 4.6 down to -12C then 28 cents below that temp, plus tax.
                            Rob
                            Rob's comment made me check, this is taken from a HQ publication effective from April 2018. It is lower than I thought but the excess rate is $.912 plus tax which is what would be applicable for heat to the garage in the winter. Note it is based on kw used not temperature, Rob must be on a different rate structure; Quebec is the lowest cost in Canada for electricity.


                            Structure of Rate D 2.7

                            The structure of Rate D for a weekly contract is as follows:

                            40.64¢ fixed charge for each day in the consumption period plus

                            5.91¢ per kilowatt hour for energy consumed, up to the product of 36 kilowatthours and the number of days in the consumption period, and
                            9.12¢ per kilowatt hour for the remaining consumption If applicable.


                            I had understood that tankless is among the most efficient method of heating liquids but have wondered at my costs. I recently purchased a small (7 gallon) conventional tank and will install it come Spring in an effort to lower costs.
                            Last edited by TedBrown; 02-03-2019, 04:12 PM.

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                            • #15

                              Re: The cost of heat

                              Originally posted by Egon View Post
                              Rusty, you have to do calculations that include you local temperatures and what insulating values you have. It will give you a btu value which can be priced for different heat generator types.

                              Heat pumps utilizing ground heat will work well in cold temperatures. Air to air heat pumps are limited by colder temperatures.
                              Hey Egon, I’m located near Ottawa. I heat my 1800 sq ft shop with two Fujitsu air source mini splits to 21C all winter without any backup heat. The only exception is when the outdoor temperature hits -30C, then my indoor temperature may drop a couple of degrees.

                              Jim


                              Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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