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Topic # 221418 10-Aug-2017 10:15
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I'm helping my father in law try and reduce his electricity bill, but I'm a bit lost on his heating options.  He's renting a small 2-bedroom unit, and there are two wall-mounted space heaters installed - one in the lounge and one in the hallway, both at floor level.  I think they may be night-store heaters, because he has a night rate on his power bill, but I don't know anything about night-store heaters - how they work, are they any good?  Do they store heat/energy and release it during the day?  If not, what is the point of them?  Or could they just be bog-standard electric heaters and the night rate is for something else?


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  Reply # 1843340 10-Aug-2017 10:17
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They're probably just plain heaters. I expect night store are quite sizeable, as they need to store energy probably in bricks or water or something. Night rate could be for water heating or something.





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  Reply # 1843341 10-Aug-2017 10:17
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Take a photo of them. Night store heaters are usually quite chunky as they are full of bricks that slowly release heat during the day. 


 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1843347 10-Aug-2017 10:24
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If they are wall mounted, they wont be night stores, ( as other have said , night stores are full of bricks they head up over night and then radiate during the day)

 

In terms of options to reduce his heating (power)  bill from Cheap to most expensive you have

 

Draught stop - windows and doors,

 

Insulate- ceilings and floors are usually fairly easy to get at

 

replace resistance heating with a heat pump,

 

Other easy wins to lower the power bill are replacing heavily used incandescent lighting with LEDS




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  Reply # 1843349 10-Aug-2017 10:25
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I can take a photo next time I'm round there, but from memory they are about 20-25cm deep, and about the overall size of flued gas heater.  I know it's not a gas heater though (no gas connection).  They have a small dial control under the top panel with faded numbers, from memory it goes from 1 to 6 (a bit like a toaster dial).  There may be other controls but I can't remember what they are.  Sounds like its not night store then... 




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  Reply # 1843357 10-Aug-2017 10:31
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I've already planned to replace his bulbs with LEDs.  I'm not sure what the insulation is like, but as a rental I believe the landlord has until 2019 to get insulation up to spec.  Going by what I know of his landlord, though, I imagine it will be a struggle all the way, and replacing heaters with a heat pump would almost be out of the question.


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  Reply # 1843443 10-Aug-2017 11:39
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Lizard1977:

 

I can take a photo next time I'm round there, but from memory they are about 20-25cm deep, and about the overall size of flued gas heater.  I know it's not a gas heater though (no gas connection).  They have a small dial control under the top panel with faded numbers, from memory it goes from 1 to 6 (a bit like a toaster dial).  There may be other controls but I can't remember what they are.  Sounds like its not night store then... 

 

 

That sounds exactly like a night store heater to me




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  Reply # 1843458 10-Aug-2017 11:47
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So if it is a night store heater, what would the day rate be for?  I would have thought he would just have a night rate (for night store) and an anytime rate for everything else...

 

 


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  Reply # 1843470 10-Aug-2017 12:01
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wellygary:

 

If they are wall mounted, they wont be night stores, ( as other have said , night stores are full of bricks they head up over night and then radiate during the day)

 

In terms of options to reduce his heating (power)  bill from Cheap to most expensive you have

 

Draught stop - windows and doors,

 

Insulate- ceilings and floors are usually fairly easy to get at

 

replace resistance heating with a heat pump,

 

Other easy wins to lower the power bill are replacing heavily used incandescent lighting with LEDS

 

 

 

 

not quite , i have 2 night store heaters that are wall mounted and quite thin . I have never used them because the power companies did away with the cheap power charges for overnight charging and now they use about $2.00 an hour to charge them up for daily use . they run for about 8 hours a night so that is $16 a day over 30 days so not cheap and that can differ on what the settings are, higher or lower. When i had my heatpump installed , i talked to the installer about the night store heaters and he said they were worthless and must people when replacing them , chucked them away.

 

on the plus side they do work well once you get the settings right and they keep the house toasty.

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 1843691 10-Aug-2017 17:37
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Lizard1977: I'm not sure what the insulation is like, but as a rental I believe the landlord has until 2019 to get insulation up to spec.  Going by what I know of his landlord, though, I imagine it will be a struggle all the way.

 

We found these guys to be pretty good http://smartenergysolutions.co.nz/funding-finance-options/insulation-subsidies

 

The requirements are for rentals to be insulation top and bottom by 2019, but the subsidies run out in 2018 (see the FAQ on the page above) so unless the landlord wants to pay for all if it himself, he should get moving sooner rather than later.

 

In Auckland you can put the rest on your rates bill and pay it off.  Not sure about the rest of the country, but the company above would know.





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  Reply # 1845444 11-Aug-2017 23:15
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Night store heaters will usually have a timer/heat setting, and a release setting or vent. 

 

The idea is they switch on at night when power is cheaper (if your plan allows) and the heat is stored in bricks within the unit. 

 

During the day, depending upon your vent setting, they will release that heat into the air slowly. 

 

They are very uncommon now. 





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  Reply # 1845485 12-Aug-2017 09:09
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raytaylor:

 

Night store heaters will usually have a timer/heat setting, and a release setting or vent. 

 

The idea is they switch on at night when power is cheaper (if your plan allows) and the heat is stored in bricks within the unit. 

 

During the day, depending upon your vent setting, they will release that heat into the air slowly. 

 

They are very uncommon now. 

 

 

 

 

If it is a nightstore, it will operate on ripple control and have its own fuse at the switch board. 

 

When the 'nite rate' hour starts, the ripple control will turn on the night store heaters. 

 

There should be two dials on it... one for thermostat and the other for release  i.e. one dial to choose desired temp and the other opens and closes the vent to allow quick release of heat or slow release of heat.

 

 

 

As others have said... its kinda  a 90's fad which has now been superceeded by heatpumps but can be very good to take the chill off the air in the house if you dont crank it all the time. 


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  Reply # 1845549 12-Aug-2017 13:01
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They are only useful if the house is occupied during the day. Otherwise you are heating an empty house and the heater has run out of heat by evening. Unless you have an afternoon boost, which costs even more.

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  Reply # 1845652 12-Aug-2017 20:34
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Nightstore heaters are great, I wouldn't be without mine. Best heating when installed in a hallway to take the chill off bedrooms. Silent, maintenance free, and runs on cheap power. Yes, it's old tech, but so is the wheel.

 

I find it best to keep an eye on upcoming weather and adjust the input accordingly, but you can just set it on low and forget about it until the weather warms up.

 

The only real downside is that if really cold weather strikes unexpectedly, then you can be forced to wait for another night to store the required extra heat.

 

If this is whats installed and you are on a night rate plan, I see no reason not to use them. I would suggest that, if they haven't been used for sometime, that you remove the front cover, and vacuum out the dust inside. Which does seem to build up in unused nightstores. This stops getting that burnt dust smell you get from old heaters. 


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