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Central heating thermostat settings and timing: building demographics

Shipworth, M; Firth, SK; Gentry, MI; Wright, AJ; Shipworth, DT; Lomas, KJ; (2010) Central heating thermostat settings and timing: building demographics. Building Research and Information , 38 (1) 50 - 69. 10.1080/09613210903263007. Green open access

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Abstract

Crucial empirical data (currently absent in building energy models) on central heating demand temperatures and durations are presented. These data are derived from the first national survey of energy use in English homes and includes monitored temperatures in living rooms, central heating settings reported by participants, along with building, technical, and behavioural data. The results are compared with model assumptions with respect to thermostat settings and heating durations. Contrary to assumptions, the use of controls did not reduce average maximum living room temperatures or the duration of operation. Regulations, policies, and programmes may need to revise their assumptions that adding controls will reduce energy use. Alternative forms of heating control should be developed and tested to ascertain whether their use saves energy in real-world settings. Given the finding that detached houses are heated for longer, these dwellings should be particularly targeted in energy-efficiency retrofit programmes. Furthermore, social marketing programmes could use the wide variation in thermostat settings as the foundation of a 'social norm' programme aimed at reducing temperatures in 'overheated' homes. Finally, building energy models that inform energy policies require firmer foundations in real-world data to improve policy effectiveness. Greater coordination of data collection and management would make more data available for this purpose.

Type: Article
Title: Central heating thermostat settings and timing: building demographics
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/09613210903263007
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09613210903263007
Language: English
Additional information: This is an Author's Accepted Manuscript of an article published in Building Research and Information. Shipworth, M and Firth, SK and Gentry, MI and Wright, AJ and Shipworth, DT and Lomas, KJ (2010) Central heating thermostat settings and timing: building demographics, Building Research and Information, 38 (1) 50 - 69. © 2010 Taylor & Francis, is available online at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09613210903263007
Keywords: building energy model, central heating, control systems, demand temperature, domestic heating controls, energy demand, inhabitant behaviour, thermostat setting, ENVIRONMENT
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/136822
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