Oil filled electric heater?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Brian N.E Ohio, Oct 26, 2005.

  1. Brian        N.E Ohio

    Brian N.E Ohio Well-Known Member

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    Is there anybody using an oil filled electric heater like these at http://www.lakewoodeng.com/html/list_oilfilled.html to suplement the furnace in your house? I notice on the box that they recommend a distance of 3 feet to any combustable surfaces. Does that mean that they need to be on a heat resistant pad or can they be used on a wood or carpeted floor? I tried the contact link on their websight to ask this question but recieved an error message. I am looking for ways to cut my natural gas bill this year and I am looking for an energy efficent alternative.
    Any comments pro or con will be appreciated.

    I have used kerosene heaters in the past but found them to be dirty and difficult to regulate the temperature in the room they are in. I think they would also be unsuitable around small children.
     
  2. ace admirer

    ace admirer Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Ok, here's what i know. the oilfilled heaters take a few minutes to heat up the bulk of the oil, then they use convection to heat up air going up through the tubing... not for quick spot heat... for instance the bathroom....i need quick heat for the short period of time anyone in my family is in there...when there's noone in there,,,,the little electric heater is cut off. so the oil filled is no good for that situtation. i use the red hot electric elements that give off lots of infrared heat and also have a fan to use up some of the convection heat the metal has.

    long term heating of a small room....probably safer for that situtation than what i use. my guess is that you will not like what its going to do to your electric bill....but i don't think any of use are going to be happy with any fuel bills now or in the future. they do get hot enough to burn skin....and to be on the safe side i'd say the 3 feet is very saft...the heat is mostly going up so i would guess that floors are ok...just dont impead air flow at the bottom of the coils.
     

  3. teresab

    teresab Well-Known Member

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    I used one when I live in my other house because the furnace was so old it wouldn't push much heat to the back of the house. I thought it worked great. My electric bill didn't skyrocket that I can remember..it really made a difference in that end of the house..like ace said it isn't an instant heat. It does take a bit to start warming..I would say 1/2 an hour to make a room feel comfy. It sat on the carpet and we never had a problem with it. I had kerosene heaters too and hated them... my nice white ceilings needed painted after a season of using them. I felt much safer with the oil filled heater with young children around...they are hot to the touch but wouldn't burn kids like a kerosene heater would when touched. Hope this is helpful to you.
     
  4. Hovey Hollow

    Hovey Hollow formerly hovey1716

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    We had one but I was overwhelmed/outraged/dumbfounded when I saw the electric bill. I don't remember exactly how much over it was but I'm wanting to say it was over $100 a month more than what it should have been, considering it was a mild winter and comparing it to previous winter's bills, etc.
    We were just using it to take the chill off and suppliment the heat in a converted garage that we had our home office in. We were not impressed!
    I don't recommend it.
     
  5. Countrybumpkin

    Countrybumpkin Well-Known Member

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    My inlaws use one of them to heat their upstairs, and they say that they barely notice it on their electric bills...once the oil gets hot, it gives off its heat for quite some time before the heating element kicks back in...they have to keep it on low, because they say that the high mode cooks them right out of the house!
     
  6. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    You still get more heating bang for the buck from gas thanfrom electric.

    It can lower your whole heating bill if you keep the house much cooler with the gas furnace, & only use the electric heater to keep one room more livable. Tho you may be able to do that with the gas furnace alone, playing with the vents & such to increase heat in one room, decrease it in others?

    On a BTU cost basis, you are using a more expensive heat source (electric) to replace a cheaper one (gas). In order to use the electric heat a little, you will need to decrease the gas use a lot.

    --->Paul
     
  7. Jim-mi

    Jim-mi Well-Known Member

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    I use one now and again when I need to dump excess energy from my wind turbines. Not overly efficient for the energy used...........but clean.

    The 3 feet thing is a "cover yer a@@" thing for the makers...hopeing the idiots out there will not put their heaters into stupid locations and causing dangerous overheating situations .
    If you use them as a primary heat source 24/7, yes your utility bill will jump up a bunch.
     
  8. FrankTheTank

    FrankTheTank Well-Known Member

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    Ive used one last year all winter and this year. Heres my take. I live in a cold climate (-27F) was the lowest temp last year with numerous nights below 0F. I think mine is the Lakewhatever. I ALWAYS have kept it on 600watts with the other dial somwhere in the middle (it cycles on and off from time to time). My billz for a month avg i'm thinking ( i can't find them!) at most another 25bucks a month (maybe more, maybe less). At this point i havent even turned the gas on yet, and won't for atleast another week or more (looking at the current forecast). NG is terribly expensive right now (roughly 2x what it was last year @ this time). I know how inefficient electric heating is, but when using it to heat a bedroom/bathroom (not the whole house!) it makes more sense (and doesn't give off poisonous vapors/fumes). For 30bucks, you really can't go wrong, and if its cost to much, take the thing back!
     
  9. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

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    We use a Delonghi oil heater to keep the cold from a window falling on our backs when we are at the loom. Of course curtains help, but with that little heater back there cooking away it really makes it cozy. Since it is only run maybe four hours a day and because the oil releases the heat slowly it is hardly noticeable on the electric bill. When it gets really cold we move it into the dining room since the woodstove heat does not circulate back there. I'm planning on saving a bundle this year by using just the woodstove and oil heater rather than the propane furnace. Propane was rediculous last year, I don't even want to guess what it will be this year.
     
  10. ace admirer

    ace admirer Well-Known Member Supporter

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    All Right!, now we're talking numbers and i don't have to worry about spelling!

    look at your last electric bill, it will have a $ per kilowatt/hour figure somewhere on it. last month mine was $0.11 per kilowatt/hour (its sure to go up as fuel cost goes up).

    on max, most electric heaters run 1500 watts (divide by 1000 and you get kilowatts) so 1.5kw multiply by hours per day you think it runs multiply by days per month it runs multiply by your electric companies rate (the 11 cent per kilowatt hour). so if the heater did run max (1500 watt not the lower setting of 600 watts) it would be:

    1500 watts / 1000 watts/kilowatt times 24 hours times 30 days times $0.11 for an end of the month bill of ,,,(hang on to your nickers) ,,,,$118.00

    of course lets hope for less than 24 hours a day and lets hope for some days per month it does not run....

    remind me to tell you what a leaking hot water pipe will do to your monthly electric bill some day.
     
  11. Janon

    Janon 993cc Geo Metro

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    Small electric heat sources have the advantage of being convenient, portable and comparatively inexpensive to purchase - although like any type of heat created by electricity, its expensive to operate - especially for high use.

    I have an oil filled heater which works great - I use it on occasion whenever the need arises. Very handy to have.

    cheers,
     
  12. starjj

    starjj Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Love ours. We do have electric heat in the ceiling but it is broken in the master bedroom so we use one of those heaters and we have to keep it pretty low because it would melt us down to nothing lol. We have had it for about 3 years now and it replaced one of those old types electric heaters which I don't consider very safe. As with anything you have to use common sense. We keep ours away from any fabric but we do put it on the rug and I have never noticed any smell and heat from the rug. Like I said we keep ours on low and use more blankets we just don't freeze when we get up and we can always up the heat (I did that this morning) so by the time showers are through the bedroom is pretty warm.
     
  13. Brian        N.E Ohio

    Brian N.E Ohio Well-Known Member

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    I am trying to raise the tempurature of the main living area in my house approx. 12x20 or 240 sq.ft. 5-6 degrees so I can turn the thermostat down a little bit further than the 66 degrees its at now. The house is about 40 yrs. old and seems to be insulated.

    Heres what I found.
    Using the numbers from this web sight http://www.exothink.com/Pages/btu.html I came up with this, assuming 100 percent efficency.

    electricity
    3,413 btus/kWh

    natural gas
    1,075 btus/1 cu.ft. 1,075,000 btus/mcf

    1 mcf=314.97kWh

    current gas price from Domion East Ohio Gas web sight at http://www.puco.ohio.gov/Puco/ApplesToApples/NaturalGas.cfm?doc_id=601 $16.21 mcf or $16.21/1,075,000 btus and expected to rise!


    current electricity cost 5.1/kWh (taken from my current bill)
    or $16.06/1,075,000 btus


    I think I see a small savings here depending on how much further gas prices rise. I may pick one up and play with it a little bit just to see how it works out.
     
  14. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    they say not to get them close to stuff, but I dont see where they get that hot... you can put your hand on them for about 5 sec before it gets painful.

    its a slow radiant heat, very much like you would get from a water radiator.
     
  15. Ramblin Wreck

    Ramblin Wreck Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I use one (DeLonghi) that has a simple 10 setting thermostat and controls that allow you to turn one side off and leave the other on. In the winter I use it next to the lounger on the lowest setting with just one side engaged. At that setting it is very warm to the touch, but not hot enough to burn your hand. I then place a blanket over both the heater and my feet. It gets very toasty very quickly. The electric bill doesn't seem to indicate that it's an energy hog on this setting.
     
  16. Jim-mi

    Jim-mi Well-Known Member

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    That blanket over the heater idea might not be such a good idea..............thats one of the reasons for the "3 feet" warning.
    Brian, its just a matter of time before the electric rates will be up there with everything else.
     
  17. Beststash

    Beststash Well-Known Member

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    Has anyone ever used a combo AC/Heater window unit - do they work OK?? Expensive??
     
  18. papaw

    papaw Well-Known Member

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    I've used one of the heaters in the original post for years on my back porch and it's worked great.