What if you’re using the wrong furnace, air conditioner, or hot water heater?
According to a new study, there’s no clear way to fix it.
In the study, researchers from the University of Washington, Stanford University, and the University at Buffalo looked at data from a number of different sources and looked at the types of thermostats people use and their use of different kinds of heaters and air conditioners.
They looked at temperature and humidity levels, and whether they were using a natural gas or electric heating system.
The researchers found that people who use a natural heat source use the same thermostatic systems as those using gas and electric heaters, which is good news for those who use natural gas.
But they also found that using natural gas is less efficient than electric heat, and that electric heat systems use less electricity than natural gas heaters.
So what should you do?
“What we did here was to look at different thermostatically-controlled heating systems and see whether they use the exact same energy efficiency, whether they have different energy efficiency in different locations, whether their efficiency depends on the temperature and how they operate,” said co-author Kevin Koo, a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.
“This paper is really the first to look for that kind of information in the data,” Koo told The Huffington View.
“We’re not talking about the thermodynamics here.
We’re looking at a thermostable system in terms of its energy efficiency.”
The researchers analyzed data from the National Energy Board’s 2009 National Energy Inventory, which includes the temperature, efficiency, and efficiency of energy systems across the United States.
“If you have an efficient thermostation system, you should be able to maintain the same temperature at the same intensity, because the system is efficient at its task,” Koon said.
“If you don’t have an efficiency, you’ll have to adjust your temperature and your heating rate.”
What the researchers found is that people using electric heat are significantly more efficient than people using natural heat.
They were also significantly more economical.
“We found that the average electric heat system uses approximately 60 percent less electricity, so it would cost about $10 per month to run the same amount of electricity using natural heating, and it’s comparable in price to other heat systems,” Kueo said.
He added that the findings of this study show that “it’s not only electric heat that is more efficient at keeping the temperature at a reasonable level.”
Electric heat systems were also found to be more efficient when the room was warmer than the surrounding air temperature.
“This suggests that there is a relationship between temperature and efficiency,” KOO said.
Koo said he hopes this research will be used to increase efficiency and reduce the amount of energy required to heat homes.
“I think it would be useful to develop a thermic energy storage system for home and commercial buildings, and I think it’s important to keep the efficiency of your energy storage systems in mind,” he said.
Koo hopes to expand on the findings with future research.
“The next step is to explore the impact of thermic efficiency in terms a different thermo-physical model, which will allow us to do a better job at understanding the efficiency and cost of different energy storage options,” Koos said.
The study was published in the Journal of the American Society for Mechanical Engineering.