Fuel costs

My fuel costs are extortionate. In December alone we used 180 euros of electric and a cord of wood (220 euros). We are only 2 adults and use showers. Heat 2 rooms during the day with oil filled electric radiators as partner has to have an office and I another smaller room to hang out in. Log burner goes on at midday until bedtime. Big stone house with no insulation to walls I know is not good but cannot afford any work at the moment. Windows mainly double glazed and curtains up where not. I wonder if there is anything available for us to improve the situation grants etc. Advice please? We are on a 6kw max setting so can’t go over that without electrics going off so we are not using ridiculous amounts.

Thicker jumpers?
That is only partly tongue in cheek. When I’m alone in the house and working, I pile on the woollies rather than turn up the heating. Unless it’s very cold I rely on the wood stove and only use the electric heating if I’m going out and it’s not worth lighting the stove. I suppose I’ve always been mean with heating but I actually find minimal background heat healthier, TBH I find most people’s houses overheated and stuffy and they make me go sleepy.

You may find grants to help with insulation/energy efficiency measures, I looked into the ANAH scheme but decided there were way too many strings attached.

Never worn so many clothes in my life and bedrooms and bathrooms never heated. I put the burner on at midday as it takes hours to heat up the bottom of the house as big open plan lounge. Believe me I slept with window open in UK and hate being too warm!! Someone suggested it is damp that is making it colder but I believe insulation is also expensive.

Have you tried keeping the burner going 24/7, setting it to burn slow overnight? Might work out more economical if you avoid having to pump heat into it every morning? I don’t, I light mine first thing and keep it going all day but let it go out overnight though occasionally it happens to stay in if I put a big log on just before going to bed. But I know some people have a policy of keeping it burning right through.

Yes it is shut down at bedtime and logs put on in very cold weather but it is out by morning usually.

Oil filled radiators are very expensive to run. I know from experience. I now use a petrole poele to supplement my logburner, it helps to get my salon up to the point where the woodburner is efficient enough to manage on its own. You are also paying a lot for your wood.
The underlying problem is that you have chosen to live in a stone house with insufficient insulation. I do the same but understand that my bills will be higher in the winter and enjoy the cool conditions that the same house provides in the heat of the summer.

To echo David a bit, electric heating does tend to be expensive (see my moans. comments about my heat pump!!)

Is there any chance to shop around for wood, or take it in a more “raw” state - our comune charges 140€ per cord (180€ for oak) but it drops to 53€ if you can cut it up yourself.

Someone will explain how this works out… re “cord of wood”

stère bois chauffage (chêne) en 0,45 m …56 euro, livraison offert…

my log burner will a bigger size (cheaper), but I can’t handle it…

I know a stère is supposed to be a cubic metre but I’ve never understood exactly what a corde is, except that it’s more. Would also be very interested if someone can explain a corde!

Approx 3.6m3, but can vary.

Some notes in French here, probably slightly more pertinent to your situation:


Traditionally, AFAIK, a cord was 4 x 4 x 8 feet, I.e. 128 cubic feet or 3.6 cubic metres. In France, it can vary between 3 and 4 cubic metres. 1 stere is 1 cubic metre.
PS, happy to be corrected.:slight_smile:

Yes, I also keep reading that in France not every corde is the same, that’s what is confusing me. So I stick to ordering it in stères.

Actually the only officially recognised unit is the m3 although the amount of wood which occupies a cubic metre will vary according to log size and thickness.

I’m still burning my way slowly (we only need a fire a couple of times per year) through the previous owner’s pile and the old kitchen so haven’t had to buy any yet but wish they’d just sell it by weight - it would be much simpler.

Would it? How would you weigh it :confused:

Today is the day my oil-boiler has decided to go on strike… as it does radiators and hot water… this could be awkward… however… the wood burner is alight and I have an old kettle I can use… :grin:

Of course, I would much rather that a plumber (any plumber) would visit asap… but we have electric radiators we can move about…and loads and loads of sweaters…:grinning: (and loads of wood)… just finished a delicious cassoulet which should keep us warm inside for a while too… :heart_eyes:

The sun has just appeared here. The warmth in the sunshine is amazing.

Put it in a container or on a pallet, place same on industrial platform scale, read weight.

Or a weighbridge.

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My house is in good shape but I bought a ’ Infrared Thermometer Temperature Gun ’ for 20(?) Euro and checked the insulation, window sills , …

I found a couple of places I needed to fix and so I did. In April I hope to get an indication what it does to my heating bill but comfort-vice major difference.

Air leakage can be very costly, if you have many places that leaks air it is like having an open window (almost).