An age old debate: having the heating on low all the time, or just turning it on when you need it?
Which is the more energy efficient?Those who argue for having their heating on all the time believe it takes additional energy to bring their home 'up to temperature' when the heating has been switched off. So, why bother spending a lot of time heating up your home only to let it cool down again?
However, if you leave your heating on 24/7, typically you will end up using more fuel. This is because some heat loss will always occur due to the difference between the temperature outside your house and the temperature your trying to maintain inside. So, if you have your heating on all the time, your heating system will be using energy on an ongoing basis to maintain the inside temperature. But, the greater the heat loss from your home, the more energy you will need to maintain the inside temperature, which means that the cost of leaving your heating on all the time will be expensive.
This all means that leaving your heating on all the time will use more energy but a lot more from inefficient homes, as the heating works harder to replace lost heat. That's why ensuring your home is well insulated and draft-proofed will minimise this heat loss.
Typically the most energy-efficient approach to heating your home is to programme your heating system so that it comes on when you need it most. With many of the more modern room thermostats you also have the ability to set different temperatures at different times on different days if so desired. When you use your boiler timer and room thermostat in conjunction with thermostatic radiator valves (TRV's) you really do have the most energy-efficient approach to heating your home.
Why not test it?
If you're not convinced - and if you have a well-insulated home - you can test whether putting on the heating 24/7 is cheaper than programming your system to come on at certain times of the day.
To get a good idea of the energy usage for each option, you can leave your heating on constantly for a week, followed by a week of programming your heating to come on twice a day.You will need to take a meter reading at the beginning and end of each week, and from the results you will be able to see - assuming the weather and temperature outdoors have been similar across the two weeks - which approach is the most energy-efficient for you.