If your kitchen is the central gathering place (as many are) and you are trying to keep your heat bill down (as most of us are), then schedule your "hot" cleaning for the colder times of the evening.
My oven was in need of cleaning, and when I run the clean cycle, it puts out heat. So, I waited until tonight after the sun went down and the temperature started to drop and ran the oven through the cleaning cycle. This was also while we were in the kitchen/dining room eating, so we enjoyed the heat.
We also let today's dishes sit until this evening. (we just rinsed them off earlier). Normally, I wash them or load the dishwasher ASAP after a meal. However, we have 20 inches of snow on the ground, and our propane truck can't get down our drive to refill our tank. So, instead of running the dishwasher, which would kick on the propane powered hot water heater, I heated water on my electric stove. I used that warm water to fill the kitchen sinks, and my daughters and I warmed up again while doing the dishes by hand.
We are keeping our thermostat at 60 during the day and layering up, and 57 at night and when we are not home. So far, we have been stretching this tank out as far as possible until the snow is gone and the tank can be refilled.
We normally also burn firewood in the fireplace, but we quit doing that in effort to save the wood so we will have it when the propane runs out.
By mom-from-missouri from NW, MO
Excellent advice, and not just to stretch your propane. Although we use natural gas, I turn our thermostat down when hubby isn't around. I also do dishes by hand, not just sometimes, but always. Cleaning not only warms you, but it also burns calories. Just food for thought to the weight-conscious!
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