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View Poll Results: Thermostat Setting (if it was free and up to you):
Less than 60 degrees 1 4.17%
60-63 2 8.33%
64-66 2 8.33%
66-68 6 25.00%
68-70 7 29.17%
70-72 2 8.33%
72-74 3 12.50%
More than 74 degrees 1 4.17%
Voters: 24. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-31-2010, 05:55 PM
 
Location: Abu Al-Qurq
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Default Set the thermostat..

With NM's dry air getting drier with a typical gas-fired furnace, different people have different ideas of what's appropriate. Aside from cost concerns and consideration of others in the household, what would you set your thermostat to if you could? (Poll attached).
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Old 12-31-2010, 07:26 PM
 
Location: New Mexico USA
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At night the programmable thermostat sets the heat to 64 degrees and comes up to 68 in the morning. We have a humidifier which helps.

But today, I set the heat to 72 degrees for a few hours after our "dog walk"....
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Old 01-01-2011, 10:18 AM
 
Location: Abu Al-Qurq
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It's interesting to see the poll has a pretty wide distribution thus far; we have people I'll call "warm-blooded" (<70 on the thermostat; they make their own heat), and "cold-blooded" (>70 on the thermostat; they need heat from their surroundings to function).

Anyone got any theories on why this separation exists? Also, what's a household with members of both groups to do to fix the problem other than "put on a coat!/go outside!/drink some hot tea!/drink some ice water!/I can't feel my toes!/I'm not wearing any clothes and I'm still burning up!" sorts of bickering?
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Old 01-01-2011, 11:04 AM
 
Location: Alto/Ruidoso
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoidberg View Post
Anyone got any theories on why this separation exists?
Primitive people tolerated cold much better than we do because they were in tune with their environments and their bodies. The natives of Tasmania never wore clothes even though the high temperatures in winter were ~50 degrees. There are many examples of Native Americans going nearly naked in cool weather. You may have also noticed that children seem to care less, even though their high surface area to volume ratio should make them more susceptible to the cold.

The body is capable of increasing metabolism and bloodflow to maintain body heat and function within reason. Negative thoughts and attitudes about the temperature, can become self-fulfilling prophecies though. If the response to the feeling of a slight chill is negative, then it tends to cascade into being unbearable.
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Old 01-01-2011, 04:36 PM
 
Location: Sacramento Mtns of NM
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I strongly suspect that this survey will be skewed by the fact that some people live alone, while others have to consider the needs of large families. Additionally, some live in small quarters easily heated while others live in wasteful air spaces that are harder to heat equitably.

As for me, I enjoy overheating when I burn my wood stove, which I can do little to control the heat from. On days when I don't burn the wood stove, I rely more heavily on a thermostat setting.

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Old 01-02-2011, 12:06 PM
 
Location: Albuquerque
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I think it is largely down to two things:

What you are used to -ever wonder why 60 degrees feels cold in September and warm in February?

Metabolism -I know a girl who is always cold; she subsists on about 1000 calories a day and thus has no spare calories to burn.

I guarantee that if you spend a couple of hours a day outside in winter that 60 degrees will keep you just fine. Most people start their furnace going when the indoor temps drop below 70 and spend their entire winter going from 70 degree house to 70 degree car to 70 degree office. Of course 60 degrees is going to seem cold.

This is why people of a given body type and genetic background from southern California will think Santa Fe is a cold city while their identical physical counterpart from Minneapolis will consider a Santa Fe winter to be mild.

On the other hand, my parent seem to like to keep their house at 59 (!) You get used to it.
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Old 01-02-2011, 05:35 PM
 
Location: Sacramento Mtns of NM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABQConvict View Post
On the other hand, my parent seem to like to keep their house at 59 (!) You get used to it.
I'm betting your parents don't dress in short sleeves and lightweight clothing either! I have friends who are always in light clothing, and I know their house is going to be much too warm for me to wear a sweater when I visit.

As for my house, kept at 60F year around, in winter I just add another layer - or two - and in summer I wear very little. Keeps my bills reasonable and I don't suffer at all. In fact I have given most of my sweaters away since I so seldom am comfortable in them. Several lighter layers are my preference. I'll turn the heat up a bit when I expect company and dress accordingly while they visit.

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Old 01-02-2011, 08:11 PM
 
Location: Alto/Ruidoso
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I saw a study somewhere where they took people from all over the world (including natives) and put them in a temperature controlled room and asked them what temperature was "ideal". There was not much variation around ~72F and no correlation with the environment that the person was accustomed to. This isn't surprising when you consider that we all have a ~98.6 core temperature regardless.
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Old 01-03-2011, 08:02 AM
 
Location: Abu Al-Qurq
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I'm surprised how many people are unsympathetic towards others' temperature concerns, and I'm having trouble reconciling the 72F number (it has always been espoused that 72 was room temperature anywhere I've read it) with the poll numbers.

Being on the 72-is-comfortable end and sharing with a 64-is-comfortable makes for a heavy compromise requirement. It'd be interesting to add another poll that sees if the 64-is-comfortable crowd opts for 76-degree swamp cooling or 64-degree refrigerated air in summer.

Now that we've gotten a bevy of theories on why, anyone got a suggestion on how to create household harmony with this disconnect?
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:44 AM
 
Location: Albuquerque
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rruff View Post
There was not much variation around ~72F and no correlation with the environment that the person was accustomed to. This isn't surprising when you consider that we all have a ~98.6 core temperature regardless.
Umm, that would make sense if humans were cold blooded creatures...

Actually that sounds like Fanger's study which was used as the foundation for the ASHRAE which determined the ideal operating temperature for American office buildings. If I recall it was something like 70 in Winter and 74 in summer. Of course, office buildings are filled with people who remain largely immobile for extended periods, often several hours at a stretch, and was skewed upward to accommodate the fact that women in the office environment are expected to wear non-insulating clothing (skirts, thin material, no socks, etc.) year round.

Also the ASHRAE standard is not a measure of thermal comfort per se, but measures operating efficiency in office environments, thus it says that at the given temp. range people who are uncomfortable will continue to work without complaint. In other words people who are slightly too warm (mostly men in the study) did not suffer productivity loss, while people who were slightly too cold, did. My guess (entirely my hypothesis) would be that warm people could not actively change the situation short of removing clothing, while cold people would get up and walk around to stoke their metabolism taking themselves away from their desks resulting in less work.

Fanger's study did not (that I know of) study people from different climatological backgrounds but there have been studies that focused on adaptive issues such as looking at the thermal comfort range of Malaysians in Malaysia versus Malaysians in London where it was shown that Malaysians in London were more comfortable at a slightly lower temperature. These studies were predicated on Fanger's

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoidberg View Post
Now that we've gotten a bevy of theories on why, anyone got a suggestion on how to create household harmony with this disconnect?
Hang out in the garage. ;-)

Last edited by ABQConvict; 01-03-2011 at 12:36 PM..
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