How should you programme your heating to help you save?

Virtually half of the energy we use in our homes is for heating. This is the only argument we need to use to convince you of the obvious: you need to improve its efficiency.

According to data from the Institute for Energy Diversification (IDAE), a household's most significant energy consumption is on heating. On average, a Spanish household dedicates 47% of its energy to meeting this important seasonal need.

It is essential to pay the utmost attention to improving its efficiency, and to do this, being able to schedule its use is a vital factor.

 

Two situations in which you are wasting energy

It is not easy to maintain the ideal temperature in the rooms we live in during the winter. Our lifestyle habits have changed dramatically in recent decades: today we spend many hours away from home. We must avoid falling into one of these two energy waste situations, both of which are very common and frequent:

  • Having the heating set to a "normal" temperature when you are not at home: this is obviously nonsense. No one is benefiting from that heat, which really adds to your bill.
  • Returning home when the heating has been off for hours: in addition to the discomfort of feeling cold until the house warms up, wanting to quickly reach a comfortable temperature is an inefficient and ill advised way to treat your heating system.

The solution to this two-edged discomfort is obviously to program your heating so that it behaves in a rational and, of course, efficient manner.

"You need a stable temperature, but your house does not. Turn down the heat when you're not at home."

Temperature at home

It is impossible to talk about heating without dealing with the perennial question: what temperature does your house need to be at?

As with all important questions, there is no single answer that is valid for everyone and everyone's particular circumstances must be taken into account. But, as a general rule, both the IDAE and other specialist agencies consider that we can spend a pleasant winter with the following figures:

  • Comfortable temperature: the one to use when you are at home and not sleeping. At 21ºC you should be able to spend the winter comfortably; you don't need a higher temperature. If you feel cold, you should try wrapping up more warmly.
  • Night-time Temperature: you should sleep covered up and therefore lower the room temperature at night. Between 18°C and 20°C is good.
  • Temperature for babies: if there are young children in the house, the comfortable temperature can be raised to between 22ºC and at most 24ºC.
  • Absent temperature: the one you need to choose if you are going to be away from home for more than two hours. If you go to work or have other tasks that keep you away from home for between two and twelve hours, it is advisable to choose about 17ºC or 18ºCIf you travel, you must turn off the power to your house and keep the heating turned off or at a minimum temperature to prevent freezing and the deterioration of furniture or utensils. About 7°C should suffice.

The key to all this is to be able to anticipate the times when you need the different temperatures. You need to ensure that when you open the door the house is already at a comfortable temperature and that when you go to bed it is already reaching the night-time temperature. To do this, you have to give the orders to your heating sufficiently in advance, this will vary depending on the size of your home and your heating system. As a general rule, for flats in the city measuring less than 150 square metres with a natural gas boiler the following settings should be sufficient:

  • To have a comfortable temperature when you return from work: an hour and a half before getting home.
  • To reach the night-time temperature: two hours before going to bed.
  • To have a comfortable temperature when returning from a long trip: about eight hours before arriving home.

To stay ahead of your needs in this way, you need to program your heating using a thermostat.

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"Your house does not need to be warmer than 21 degrees during the winter. And in bedrooms, you can leave it at 18 degrees."

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Analogue thermostats and smart homes

The thermostat controls the operation of the heating system. The simplest and oldest thermostats only had one function: to regulate the temperature. When a certain temperature is selected, it acts by turning on the heating when the temperature is lower than that level, and turning it off when this temperature is reached or exceeded. Without a doubt, the thermostat was a great invention, but only having this function leaves you with the inconvenience of having to manually start the thermostat and means you are unable to plan ahead.

The great evolution in terms of thermostats came when they managed to incorporate a clock. Now we could program the times at which we wanted the thermostat to change to one temperature or another. So we could plan ahead.

Although this system is much more efficient than a manual thermostat, it still has some drawbacks. For example, it is normal for our lives not to be so regular, and we often get home after the scheduled time, thereby wasting energy.

To avoid this problem, the latest thermostats have a wireless Internet connection. With them, you can control everything from your mobile, remotely, and warn the heating that you are going to be late... or that you will be home earlier than expected.

In fact, with smart home technology it is even possible to select different temperatures for each room in your house.

 

From smart homes to smart rates

When talking about heating, there is one phrase that is more important than any other: peace of mind. What you want is not to have to worry, to know that whenever you need heat you will have it and that you will pay the lowest possible price.

You can have this by combining the One Gas rate, Endesa's best online price, with OK Gas, which ensures that urgent breakdowns are repaired in less than 3 hours, at any time of the day and any day of the year:

And if you want to always pay the same amount: Única

Única by Endesa is our star rate for those who seek the peace of mind of always paying the same amount, however much they consume.

We calculate your personalised instalment and that's it: no surprises, no changes, you will always pay the same amount... or less!

If you overcome the energy efficiency challenges that we set you, you will not only always pay the same, you will also get discounts on your instalments.

In other words, the more efficient you are, the less you pay.

It is a win-win situation for you and for the planet.

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