AARoads Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

The next forum trivia night will take place on OCTOBER 30, 2019 at 8:15 PM Eastern.

Poll

Well, has it gone on long enough?

Yes
- 13 (35.1%)
No
- 13 (35.1%)
Bring me the groundhog's head on a platter for predicting 6 more weeks of winter!
- 11 (29.7%)

Total Members Voted: 37


Author Topic: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough  (Read 23257 times)

Zeffy

  • Revved to Redline
  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 4388
  • Age: 25
  • Location: Doylestown, Pennsylvania
  • Last Login: July 12, 2019, 02:55:21 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #50 on: July 12, 2015, 06:24:44 PM »

Why do people think winter is miserable anyway?

I'll tell you what's really miserable: 95 degrees and dewpoints in the 70s.  That's miserable!  A little snow is just fun.

I would so much rather be "freezing" cold and have snow then have to deal with scorching temperatures with disgustingly high humidity. You can warm up much faster than you can cool off.
Logged
Life's too short to play it safe.

Exploring roads in my 2018 Honda Civic Type R. Hopefully those roads are free of potholes :D

Rothman

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5119
  • Last Login: November 17, 2019, 10:23:34 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #51 on: July 12, 2015, 06:53:52 PM »


I'll tell you what's really miserable: 95 degrees and dewpoints in the 70s.  That's miserable!  A little snow is just fun.

Crazytalk.
Logged
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position(s) of NYSDOT.

Rothman

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5119
  • Last Login: November 17, 2019, 10:23:34 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #52 on: July 12, 2015, 06:54:40 PM »

Why do people think winter is miserable anyway?

I'll tell you what's really miserable: 95 degrees and dewpoints in the 70s.  That's miserable!  A little snow is just fun.

I would so much rather be "freezing" cold and have snow then have to deal with scorching temperatures with disgustingly high humidity. You can warm up much faster than you can cool off.



Fun...fun...fun. :P
Logged
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position(s) of NYSDOT.

Brandon

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 10475
  • Mr. Accelerator is our friend; Mr. Brake is not.

  • Age: 42
  • Location: Joliet, IL
  • Last Login: November 18, 2019, 07:27:49 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #53 on: July 12, 2015, 09:38:21 PM »


I'll tell you what's really miserable: 95 degrees and dewpoints in the 70s.  That's miserable!  A little snow is just fun.

Crazytalk.

Let me remind you of that when I'm sweating buckets uncontrollably.  Sweating like that is no fun at all, IMHO.
Logged
"If you think this has a happy ending, you haven't been paying attention." - Ramsay Bolton

Illinois: America's own banana republic.

Free HK.  F the PRC.

jakeroot

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 10421
  • U/Wash - Urban Design

  • Age: 23
  • Location: Seattle and Tacoma, WA Vancouver, BC | Arlington, VA
  • Last Login: Today at 03:22:56 AM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #54 on: July 12, 2015, 11:35:51 PM »


I'll tell you what's really miserable: 95 degrees and dewpoints in the 70s.  That's miserable!  A little snow is just fun.

Crazytalk.

Let me remind you of that when I'm sweating buckets uncontrollably.  Sweating like that is no fun at all, IMHO.

I too hate sweating (and it's bad here in the Northwest because many places have no AC) but I prefer sweating to driving in the snow.
Logged

J N Winkler

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 6408
  • Location: Wichita, Kansas/Oxford, Great Britain
  • Last Login: Today at 12:07:05 AM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #55 on: July 13, 2015, 12:08:23 PM »

The entire country can't be fortunate enough to live in the relatively small areas of the country (essentially just a few areas in California, including the maritime parts of the Bay Area) where it rarely snows and never gets very hot in the summer.  In terms of power consumption, it is marginally more sensible to live in places that require A/C use in the summer because the national power burden of A/C is about one-quarter that of heating.

If I were choosing a place to live regardless of family ties and so on, I doubt I would live as far south as Wichita, but I would certainly have reservations about living far enough north that undercarriage rust on a daily driver would be a virtual inevitability.
Logged
"It is necessary to spend a hundred lire now to save a thousand lire later."--Piero Puricelli, explaining the need for a first-class road system to Benito Mussolini

Brandon

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 10475
  • Mr. Accelerator is our friend; Mr. Brake is not.

  • Age: 42
  • Location: Joliet, IL
  • Last Login: November 18, 2019, 07:27:49 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #56 on: July 13, 2015, 02:35:54 PM »

In terms of power consumption, it is marginally more sensible to live in places that require A/C use in the summer because the national power burden of A/C is about one-quarter that of heating.

I'm going to throw some cold water on that.  The power burden of heating is mostly borne by natural gas, not electricity.  Natural gas for heating is tremendously cheaper than electrical power for A/C.
Logged
"If you think this has a happy ending, you haven't been paying attention." - Ramsay Bolton

Illinois: America's own banana republic.

Free HK.  F the PRC.

J N Winkler

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 6408
  • Location: Wichita, Kansas/Oxford, Great Britain
  • Last Login: Today at 12:07:05 AM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #57 on: July 13, 2015, 03:08:15 PM »

I'm going to throw some cold water on that.  The power burden of heating is mostly borne by natural gas, not electricity.  Natural gas for heating is tremendously cheaper than electrical power for A/C.

The four-to-one split is based on energy usage.  Besides the disparity in price, I suspect electricity is more carbon-intensive per energy unit in the US since we still generate 46% of our electricity from coal.  (We are doing better than China and Australia, where these percentages are 77% and 70% respectively, but not as good as the UK or Canada, where they are 30% and 12% respectively.)

But it is also arguable that we spend far too much energy on home heating.  The nation's oldest and hardest-to-upgrade housing stock is in parts of the country where winters are especially severe; new houses built to Passivhaus standards cut the use of energy for interior space heating almost to nothing, except at latitudes not encountered in the US outside Alaska.  The marginal carbon burden of A/C has the potential to be almost nothing in Sunbelt states where the necessary electricity can be supplied by wind, hydro, or solar (I say "marginal" because industrial production of the necessary plant demands a reliable supply of electricity, which typically implies either coal or nuclear in parts of the country that don't have access to hydro power).
Logged
"It is necessary to spend a hundred lire now to save a thousand lire later."--Piero Puricelli, explaining the need for a first-class road system to Benito Mussolini

realjd

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 2111
  • Age: 35
  • Location: Palm Bay, FL
  • Last Login: June 08, 2019, 09:27:55 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #58 on: July 13, 2015, 03:36:45 PM »

I'm going to throw some cold water on that.  The power burden of heating is mostly borne by natural gas, not electricity.  Natural gas for heating is tremendously cheaper than electrical power for A/C.

That depends on region. From what I understand, most of the NE US uses something called heating oil in the winter instead of natural gas, propane, or electricity.
Logged

NJRoadfan

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1371
  • Location: New Jersey
  • Last Login: November 18, 2019, 11:15:51 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #59 on: July 13, 2015, 04:01:35 PM »

Heating oil puts you at the whim of the diesel fuel pricing market. While it makes sense for remote areas, many of the houses around here with oil heat have access to natural gas lines in the street. Heck, I've been in houses with oil heat that have natural gas powered hot water heater and ranges! That was likely a case of someone being too cheap to replace a dinosaur boiler, even though it would quickly pay itself off in increased efficiency and lower fuel costs.
Logged

J N Winkler

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 6408
  • Location: Wichita, Kansas/Oxford, Great Britain
  • Last Login: Today at 12:07:05 AM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #60 on: July 13, 2015, 04:11:26 PM »

In my area, builders were still installing single-pane glass with storm windows (a not-very-effective "double glazing" solution) well into the seventies.  My parents built a house in 1979 that had real double-glazing, and also paid extra to have additional insulation and a more efficient HVAC system put in than the builder's defaults.  When they had to have the HVAC replaced about 27 years later, an even more efficient system was put in that entailed installing additional lagging in the basement, and the HVAC repairmen told them that the old system had probably saved them many thousands of dollars over its life.

Meanwhile, standards for new construction have moved on, and if you do not specify triple-glazing when building new, people think you are chucking money out the window.  My parents had to have a large picture window replaced about five years ago due to frame rot and the replacement is triple-glazed because that was all that was readily available in that size.

And all of this is in an area that experienced its major population growth spurt after World War II.  The problems with excess durability of thermally inefficient building materials are almost unimaginably worse in Northeastern cities whose populations have stayed essentially flat since 1945.
Logged
"It is necessary to spend a hundred lire now to save a thousand lire later."--Piero Puricelli, explaining the need for a first-class road system to Benito Mussolini

Pete from Boston

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5282
  • Location: Massachusetts, and all the roads radiating out of it
  • Last Login: October 26, 2019, 12:02:51 PM
Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #61 on: July 13, 2015, 04:46:39 PM »

There is a relatively little incentive for owners of rental property to upgrade oil systems to gas, even in places already served by gas like you mentioned.  The conversion rate is a little better in owner-occupied units, but gasfitters do not work cheap, and a modern efficient system can cost more than a few thousands to buy and install.

As for triple pane windows, they are still not all that common to install, again because of significant added cost.  We're talking easily $500 apiece for a nice double-hung, with plenty of opportunity to spend more.

However, energy codes are getting tougher, and I think you will see more of them. Cities and towns in Massachusetts are all moving toward something called "stretch code," which doubles a lot of the energy efficiency standards.
Logged

Pete from Boston

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5282
  • Location: Massachusetts, and all the roads radiating out of it
  • Last Login: October 26, 2019, 12:02:51 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #62 on: July 13, 2015, 04:54:10 PM »

As for hot versus cold, it seems to me that one should either live where one is content with the weather, or not complain.  As I have gotten older it has become apparent to me that complaining about the weather is one of the more arrogant activities one can engage in.  It implies that one is entitled to nature accommodating one's needs.  Moreover, it's a lousy use of energy that could be used on solvable problems, of which the weather is not one.
Logged

Rothman

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5119
  • Last Login: November 17, 2019, 10:23:34 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #63 on: July 13, 2015, 05:47:51 PM »

Heating oil is still very common in the Northeast.  In fact, it was a popular conversion from electric heat up until at least the early 1990s.
Logged
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position(s) of NYSDOT.

realjd

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 2111
  • Age: 35
  • Location: Palm Bay, FL
  • Last Login: June 08, 2019, 09:27:55 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #64 on: July 13, 2015, 07:51:44 PM »

Heating oil puts you at the whim of the diesel fuel pricing market. While it makes sense for remote areas, many of the houses around here with oil heat have access to natural gas lines in the street. Heck, I've been in houses with oil heat that have natural gas powered hot water heater and ranges! That was likely a case of someone being too cheap to replace a dinosaur boiler, even though it would quickly pay itself off in increased efficiency and lower fuel costs.

People seriously have personal boilers and steam heat in their house?
Logged

Rothman

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5119
  • Last Login: November 17, 2019, 10:23:34 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #65 on: July 13, 2015, 07:59:45 PM »

Heating oil puts you at the whim of the diesel fuel pricing market. While it makes sense for remote areas, many of the houses around here with oil heat have access to natural gas lines in the street. Heck, I've been in houses with oil heat that have natural gas powered hot water heater and ranges! That was likely a case of someone being too cheap to replace a dinosaur boiler, even though it would quickly pay itself off in increased efficiency and lower fuel costs.

People seriously have personal boilers and steam heat in their house?

I do.  Natural gas-fueled.  Water heater = gas-fueled.  Range = electric.

And I do mean steam heat.  Not hot water.  Steam.
Logged
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position(s) of NYSDOT.

GaryV

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 989
  • Location: Southeast Michigan
  • Last Login: November 18, 2019, 07:45:31 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #66 on: July 13, 2015, 08:05:10 PM »


People seriously have personal boilers and steam heat in their house?
Not steam, but hot water.  Richard Trethewey of This Old House prefers it to forced air, because it's more constant.  (Of course he's from New England too, and boilers work well with fuel oil.)  Forced air has that brief time when the fan turns on and it blows cooled air out of the ducts until the warm air starts coming out.

And regarding extremes of cold vs hot - you can put on more clothes and wrap up for the cold.  You can only take off so much when it is hot.
Logged

Rothman

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5119
  • Last Login: November 17, 2019, 10:23:34 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #67 on: July 13, 2015, 08:06:50 PM »


People seriously have personal boilers and steam heat in their house?
Not steam, but hot water. 

No. I've got steam heat and the Burnham boiler and radiators to prove it.
Logged
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position(s) of NYSDOT.

J N Winkler

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 6408
  • Location: Wichita, Kansas/Oxford, Great Britain
  • Last Login: Today at 12:07:05 AM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #68 on: July 13, 2015, 08:18:01 PM »

People seriously have personal boilers and steam heat in their house?

Yup.  It is the norm in New England and in much of western Europe.

As for hot versus cold, it seems to me that one should either live where one is content with the weather, or not complain.  As I have gotten older it has become apparent to me that complaining about the weather is one of the more arrogant activities one can engage in.  It implies that one is entitled to nature accommodating one's needs.  Moreover, it's a lousy use of energy that could be used on solvable problems, of which the weather is not one.

I do not usually see complaints about the weather by themselves as proof of an entitled attitude.  The weather isn't a badly cooked dish one can send back to the kitchen for rectification, and this is generally recognized.  In my experience, complaints about the weather are either infrequent cris de coeur or part of a pattern of complaining about anything and everything that is indicative of social maladjustment.

Shopping for a good climate can entail compromising employment, housing, and leisure opportunities, and at best it is only playing the odds.  Everyplace on Earth has really bad weather every once in a while.  The best one can do is to arrange shelter to accommodate the plausible extremes for the climate zone one is in, and support provision of some form of emergency cover where it is required, such as basements for schools in Tornado Alley, or cooling centers for the homeless in cities like Chicago.

As for triple pane windows, they are still not all that common to install, again because of significant added cost.  We're talking easily $500 apiece for a nice double-hung, with plenty of opportunity to spend more.

In this area I don't think triple-glazing would ordinarily be considered except as part of new construction.  The house I grew up in was built for something like $100,000 and I have been told that complete reglazing, with triple-pane windows in 19 openings, would cost at least $20,000.  It is really quite astonishing how expensive windows are.

In Britain, where historic buildings with single-paned windows often have listed status, a common approach to retrofitting for energy efficiency is to install fairly discreet storm windows on one side or the other of the original glazing.

I also don't think the cost of a sheet of glass increases linearly with surface area beyond a certain fairly narrow size range.  I have relatives who had to have a patio door replaced after burglars damaged it by using as a point of entry to clean out the house over several days.  (It was the off-season.)  The patio door was the standard two-pane arrangement and the thieves did damage not just to the frame but also to parts of the wall just outside the opening.  Repairs ultimately cost well over $10,000.
Logged
"It is necessary to spend a hundred lire now to save a thousand lire later."--Piero Puricelli, explaining the need for a first-class road system to Benito Mussolini

Pete from Boston

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5282
  • Location: Massachusetts, and all the roads radiating out of it
  • Last Login: October 26, 2019, 12:02:51 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #69 on: July 13, 2015, 08:47:55 PM »



People seriously have personal boilers and steam heat in their house?
Not steam, but hot water. 

No. I've got steam heat and the Burnham boiler and radiators to prove it.

Steam here, too.  And it's not just old cast iron, either—there is even at least one company around here selling sleek, modern new steam radiator designs. 
Logged

Rothman

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5119
  • Last Login: November 17, 2019, 10:23:34 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #70 on: July 13, 2015, 09:03:42 PM »



People seriously have personal boilers and steam heat in their house?
Not steam, but hot water. 

No. I've got steam heat and the Burnham boiler and radiators to prove it.

Steam here, too.  And it's not just old cast iron, either—there is even at least one company around here selling sleek, modern new steam radiator designs. 

Heh.  I've got some cast iron piping in here.
Logged
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position(s) of NYSDOT.

kkt

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 4525
  • Location: Seattle, Washington
  • Last Login: Today at 01:11:18 AM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #71 on: July 13, 2015, 09:38:39 PM »

Seattle is mixed.  Natural gas pipes only come to about 1/2 the houses, so those half mostly have gas forced air furnaces.  Of those without natural gas, it's about 3/4 oil, supplied by truck, and 1/4 electric.
Logged

Pete from Boston

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5282
  • Location: Massachusetts, and all the roads radiating out of it
  • Last Login: October 26, 2019, 12:02:51 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #72 on: July 13, 2015, 10:53:09 PM »




People seriously have personal boilers and steam heat in their house?
Not steam, but hot water. 

No. I've got steam heat and the Burnham boiler and radiators to prove it.

Steam here, too.  And it's not just old cast iron, either—there is even at least one company around here selling sleek, modern new steam radiator designs. 

Heh.  I've got some cast iron piping in here.

Steam seems to run through a variety of pipes in this area—steel/iron, copper, and even brass (which is potentially disastrous because it corrodes and gets brittle). Nearly all steam systems here run through big old cast-iron radiators, meaning there is a brisk trade in castoff radiators. 
Logged

NJRoadfan

  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 1371
  • Location: New Jersey
  • Last Login: November 18, 2019, 11:15:51 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #73 on: July 13, 2015, 11:08:50 PM »

We have steam heat here too. Cast iron pipes, all gravity powered. The boiler itself doesn't require any electric (uses a now banned millivolt thermopile to run the gas valve) so we have heat when the power goes out for extended periods. In terms of heating its great, you don't have large swings in temperature when the system cycles like with forced air. The radiators in this house are set in the wall, so they don't take up all kinds of space. The only downside is steam boilers aren't available in efficient configurations like circulating hot water is.

Most of the complaints you will hear about gravity steam heat are usually from people with systems that aren't working right. If the system isn't balanced, you will have problems, plus that wonderful banging of the pipes at 2am when the system decides to surge.
Logged

Rothman

  • *
  • *
  • Offline Offline

  • Posts: 5119
  • Last Login: November 17, 2019, 10:23:34 PM
Re: Winter 2015, has it gone on long enough
« Reply #74 on: July 13, 2015, 11:11:19 PM »

Most of the complaints you will hear about gravity steam heat are usually from people with systems that aren't working right. If the system isn't balanced, you will have problems, plus that wonderful banging of the pipes at 2am when the system decides to surge.

I've sort of given up on making sure my pipes are sloped the right way.  Seems whenever one gets fixed another gets kinked the wrong way.  Bang bang bang bang... :D
Logged
Please note: All comments here represent my own personal opinion and do not reflect the official position(s) of NYSDOT.

 


Opinions expressed here on belong solely to the poster and do not represent or reflect the opinions or beliefs of AARoads, its creators and/or associates.