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Heating Facts and Costly Fiction

Posted on November 12, 2015 by Chris Lancaster

heating-facts-imageThe Lancaster Brothers have heard it all over the years. There are lots of ideas about how and why to heat your home during the winter months. If you don’t have a background in heating, some of these misconceptions actually make a lot of sense! So, we decided to do a little myth-busting and explain away some of the heating myths that are costing you money.

Set Your Thermostat Way Higher to Warm Up a Cold Room Fast

When you walk inside and it’s freezing, the first thing most of us want to do is crank the thermostat up to 80°. Unfortunately, your heater is only on or off, there’s no in-between, and you’re just going to make yourself uncomfortably warm. Imagine your heater works like an oven, instead of a stovetop. When you’re boiling a pot of water, you turn the heat up all the way to heat the water quickly. However, when you’re baking, you set the oven temperature exactly where it needs to be. The oven will take the same amount of time to reach 300° if you set it to 300° or 400°. If you set your oven, or your thermostat, higher than it needs to be you’ll reach your desired temperature in the same amount of time, then keep rising.

Warmer Temperatures Keep You Healthy

Not quite. While you obviously want to keep your home above freezing, giving your heater a break has its benefits for your body. Bacteria thrive in warm places, and when it’s cold outside, everyone spends time together inside, in much closer proximity. This added exposure to others and their germs is the real reason more people get sick in the colder months. Sadly, the temperature of the room won’t keep a cold away. If you’re worried about those extra holiday calories, turning the heat down might actually help you! Studies have shown that lower, but still comfortable, temperatures help your body burn calories. Sleeping in a bedroom set to 66° for a month made study participants better able to process sugar.

Looking for more ways to keep your house healthy? Consider an Air Purification System.

Leaving Your Home at a Constant Temperature Will Save You Money

The idea here is that by leaving your thermostat set to the same temperature, even while you’re away at work or asleep during the night, you’re preventing your system from working harder right when you get home. However, as we discussed with the first myth, your heater is either on or off. You’re not making it work harder when you come home and set the temperature back to a more comfortable level, you’re saving it the work of running all day while you’re not home. If your heater seems to be working too hard anyway, it might be time to replace it. Remember, saving your heater work, means saving yourself some cash.

Spices Make You Hot

This one’s true – among other health benefits, ginger is known to heat up internal body temperatures. If you’ve got a love for spicy food, cooler weather is a great time to enjoy it. This tip may not change how you heat your house, but it’s a good excuse to whip up some gingerbread cookies!

As we said, the Lancaster Brothers have heard it all. If you’ve got any other questions about your heating and cooling system, call (913) 837-2000. We’ve been serving the Kansas City area for years, and we’re real pros at helping you understand, and repair, tricky heating problems.


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