When we moved into this house, there was no insulation. At all. One of the first things we did was tear out the walls in the oldest part of the house (our bedrooms, living room and library) and insulate it. The “newer” part of the house (1940s, as opposed to the 1890s part) isn’t insulated either and comprises of our bathroom, dining room and kitchen/laundry room.
We keep the thermostat at 18 degrees Celcius (64 Farenheit, my Americans!), which is an improvement on how we used to live. In the Big City, we couldn’t control our ancient radiator heating and the landlord never fixed it properly. We spent three winters at about 14 Celcius (57 Farenheit). When spring came and the apartment reached the legal minimum of 18, we wore Hawaiian shirts and drank tropical drinks in celebration.
Needless to say, even at 18 degrees, there are sweaters and slippers all around. Blankets are draped over every chair. The other day I had a casserole in the oven and I found the cat perched on the stovetop, his pitiful feet beneath him, warming himself.
I’m not sure how much we save by keeping the house this cold. After our last few hydro bills, I’m not going to press my luck by turning it up. I’m curious about other frugal families – how cold is your house? is there a certain pride on how low can you go?