If my wife found out I did this she would get mad.
Did you know that heating and cooling accounts for more than half of the energy use in a typical U.S. home, making it the largest energy expense for most homes? – energy.gov
Well yes I did! As a saver I am always aware of expenses big and small, and keeping your home comfortable comes as a cost.
It’s winter in Texas, although based on the current weather over the past couple of weeks you wouldn’t think so. It’s been between 60 and 80 degrees which has been great for my wallet as we haven’t had to use the heating. Plus, looking at my previous energy bills keeping our house warm costs a lot more than keeping it cool, so overall I’m very happy with our unseasonably warm winter.
Although we have had a few days where it has gotten close to freezing, let me tell you about those days.
After a long day my wife and I love to relax in a similar way when it comes to apparel, loose fitting, light comfortable clothes. While this is great during the summer months, it can give you quite a chill in winter. Now, being a saver my solution to this is to put on extra clothes such as socks, a sweater, perhaps a dressing gown, anything so I don’t have to turn up the heat. The only drawback to this is that I’m not as comfortable as I once was, occasionally I will get hot and have to remove something, only to put it back on 10 minutes later because I am cold again. Don’t even get me started on trying to lie down on couch wearing a dressing gown, I always seem to be laying on it to the point where I can’t change positions easily without it stretching and pulling on me. My wife on the other hand doesn’t like those types of clothing compromises. She’s still very comfortable wearing her night gown and her response to the odd chill is “can you turn up the heat please babe?”. As the ever doting husband I happily oblige, even though it goes against my saving principals. I’ll casually ask her throughout the night if she wants her dressing gown or a blanket, to which her response is “thanks babe, but I’m OK”. When its time for bed I head over to the thermostat to relieve the stress on my wallet. “Babe what are you doing? leave the temperature where it is so its nice and warm when we get up” she say’s. “OK babe” I reply.
Once we lay down in bed my stealth saver mode kicks in. “I’m just getting a glass of water, do you want one?” I ask. “No thanks babe” she replies, and off I go towards the kitchen, I turn on the kitchen faucet and then creep over to the thermostat where I unleash the power of saving and jab that down button furiously 3 – 4 degrees. A massive sense of financial relief washes over me, I fill up my glass and head back to bed. “Goodnight babe” I say.
But as a stealth saver I’m not done, if she wakes up before me she’ll realize that its cold in the living room and my cunning plan would have been foiled… this is where sacrifices must be made. I set my alarm 30 minutes earlier than hers so I can get up and put the thermostat back to where we had it when we both went to bed. The heating kicks on and by the time she’s awake she’ll be none the wiser. I’m happy, she’s happy. Mission accomplished!
Fellow stealth savers you have the potential to save up to 3% on your heating bill for every degree you turn the thermostat down. I’ve come up with this catchy slogan to help you remember this story when you find yourself in a similar situation. “When she’s not around, turn it down”…
Just remember to turn it back up before she finds out 🙂