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Degree days can be a useful way to estimate how much your energy bill will be before you ever see it. This can help you keep your fuel use within your budget. They can also help you see when you are using the most energy throughout the year.
There are two types of degree days: heating and cooling. For figuring both, you take the difference between the day's average temperature and the baseline of 65 degrees Fahrenheit to land at a number that represents the necessary energy usage for the day. By calculating the sum of degree days for various time spans – different weeks or months – you get an easy-to-comprehend way to see how energy efficient your home is at different times of the year.
For example, if the low of the day is 30 and the high is 40, then the average temperature is 35. When you subtract that from 65, you get 30 heating degree days. Then you can begin comparing different days and seeing fuel use trends emerge.
Cooling degree days work similarly except that you have to subtract 65 from the average. So if the average temperature for a day is 80, that date would have 15 cooling degree days. If the average temperature for a day is 65, there are no degree days.
All of this information can be viewed in a variety of ways to help you get a thorough look at energy usage that's much more comprehensive than a typical utility bill could provide. This helps you prepare better for energy costs. It also allows you to make adjustments in how you use energy to lower your fuel use.
For more information about calculating and analyzing degree days, contact Russell's Heating and Cooling. We are a family-owned and operated company based in Chesapeake that has proudly served all of the Hampton Roads area since 1977.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
Russell’s Heating & Cooling services the Chesapeake, Virginia and the surrounding areas. To get started, check out our website.