Opinions - What's a good set back?


Old 03-17-13, 06:26 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 985
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Opinions - What's a good set back?

Oil fired 2 zone hot water baseboard. I have a set back schedule as follows:
Typical M-F 6AM 66' - 4:30PM 68' - 10PM 62'
Upstairs bedrooms stay at 62 all day until 9PM - 66' then down to 62' till 6AM - 66' for 2 hrs.

The 4' recovery downstairs on cold mornings takes a while. I bump up the set back a degree in Jan, Feb to compensate.

I often wonder if the energy used to recover in the cold mornings off sets the set back night time savings? Where's the sweet spot? I'm trying to factor in comfort too. I try to step it up in increments, 4' in the AM then another 2' when we come home from work in the evening. It's the cold morning recovery that takes 2 hrs or more when it's really cold that makes me question this.

Opinions, comments, suggestions are all welcome.

Tom in NJ
Sponsored Links
Old 03-17-13, 07:07 AM
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: USA
Posts: 4,947
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
A lot depends on the size of your boiler and the water temps you run. I installed a smaller boiler with ODR so recovering from a setback took a long time. I gave up all my set backs. The house feels far warmer in the morning at 70F with no set back compared to 70F after recovering from a set back. That's because the walls and furniture are also 70F. You may want to try running 66F all day long and see how that feels.
Old 03-17-13, 07:13 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 985
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Water temp is 180 max with an Intellicon HW+ on the system. Boiler runs great with nice long cycle times. I agree the house is more comfy with a more steady temp, but where are the savings?
Old 03-17-13, 07:25 AM
NJT's Avatar
NJT is offline
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 23,539
Received 3 Votes on 2 Posts
where are the savings?
I've never been convinced myself that there really ARE any savings with short term setbacks. Longer term, yes, of course there are. That 'sweet spot', the point of diminishing returns, can only really be found by extensive experimentation and laborious data collection, and will change with the outdoor conditions.

I only setback 2 at night for sleeping comfort only.
Old 03-17-13, 07:47 AM
lawrosa's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Galivants Ferry SC USA
Posts: 18,145
Received 60 Votes on 52 Posts
I only setback 2 at night for sleeping comfort only.
same here.... any lower then 68f and the admiral will make me walk the plank......
Old 03-17-13, 07:57 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 985
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
I guess I'm lucky there, we both like it cold at night.
My cooling bill is another issue to be discussed shortly...
Old 03-19-13, 05:58 AM
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: NJ
Posts: 198
Received 2 Votes on 2 Posts
2-3 is a good number, unless of course the heat is radiant or perhaps with outdoor reset. If the boiler is sized correctly for the heat loss there may not be enough output for quick recovery on cold days and you can start a yoyo effect. The temp no sooner reaches a setpoint than it's time for a setback.

We've left out t'stats alone for years. With proper zoning and good insulation our fuel consumption is still affordable. We did add a small electric stove, one with the pretty flame effect, for our kitchen area that we use a lot. Minimal additional on the bill and it has a psychological effect that makes you feel warmer.
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: