A quarter of households are already troubled by expensive energy. It’s not just them who are throttling the heating

A quarter of households are already troubled by expensive energy. It’s not just them who are throttling the heating
A quarter of households are already troubled by expensive energy. It’s not just them who are throttling the heating

This follows from the research that the Institute for the Prevention and Solution of Over-indebtedness commissioned from the research organization PAQ Research in response to the energy crisis.

“In terms of household income, 44 percent of households below the poverty line and 28 percent of low-income households report medium and large problems. For people with above-standard incomes, it is 13 percent, and people with high incomes are only affected by the problem of rising prices in three percent,” he states.

The institute also mentions that across all income groups, this indicator has an increasing trend and it can be assumed that the situation will continue to worsen with rising energy prices and the arrival of winter.

According to Jan Béreš, an energy analyst at Ušetřeno.cz, the heating costs for many households living in single-family houses can be liquidating.

“A household that, for example, heated its house with gas or electricity last year for 40-50 thousand a year, and with which the fixation ends, he will pay more than three times more. If we take into account the current stock exchange prices of electricity or gas, which have increased further and suppliers will project them next year, then the costs will rise above 200,000 per year, which is unbearable for many households,” says Béreš.

Turn off the heating when leaving the apartment?

The head of Pražská plynárenská, Martin Pacovský, has already pointed out on his Twitter that the heating season will once again open up the discussion on whether it makes sense to turn off the heating if you are going away for the weekend or on vacation.

The heating season will once again open the debate whether turning off the heating for the weekend or holiday makes sense or not. Thermal inertia of buildings, costs of maintaining temperature or reheating cold rooms, etc. When you go away for a week:

August 16, 2022 at 8:41 am, post archived: August 19, 2022 at 1:39 pm

Experts have been warning for a long time that turning off the heating when leaving the house may not ultimately mean savings. In particular, residents of older and uninsulated houses or apartments should become smarter.

“If it’s an old and uninsulated building, it might get cold during the weekend. And subsequently, its heating will be more energy demanding than if it were heated to a certain temperature all the time,” says Petr Pavlík from the Department of Energy at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Mining and Technology – Ostrava Technical University.

According to him, people often do not realize that not only the air temperature drops in an apartment or house during heating. “For example, all the things you have at home, i.e. all the furniture and equipment, cool down to fourteen degrees inside. And all things must then be reheated to the required temperature,” says Pavlík.

It makes no sense to give universal advice

However, according to him, it is not possible to give advice on when it makes sense to turn off the heating and when, on the contrary, it should not. “It can be generalized and said that if it is an insulated building that has replaced windows and a small heat loss, a certain saving should occur when the heating is turned off or reduced for the weekend,” says Pavlík.

In reality, he says, many other factors matter. One of them is the difference between the temperature inside and outside. “If it’s five degrees outside and we heat the house to twenty, the so-called temperature drop is fifteen degrees. If it’s minus ten degrees outside and we heat it to twenty degrees inside, the temperature drop is thirty degrees,” explains Pavlík.

“So if we turn off the heating on the Friday before the weekend and it’s five degrees outside the whole time, it can mean savings in the end result. But if it gets significantly colder outside, it can be the other way around,” adds Pavlík.

In the case of an apartment in a panel building, how the neighbors heat also plays a role. “If you have a neighbor living below you who heats the apartment a lot, you can easily go away for the weekend, turn off the heating, and it can still be 19 degrees in the apartment. But it will look completely different if the apartment is empty,” says Pavlík.

Another important variable is the location of the apartment. “An apartment under the roof, whether it is insulated or not, has a greater heat loss than an apartment that is located between two floors,” he points out.

It may not pay to heat too little

Billing in apartments is also more complicated. And the apartment user will never pay zero crowns for heating, even if there is no heating in his apartment at all.

“In apartment buildings, 30-50 percent of the total heat costs are calculated according to the floor area (the so-called basic component, note ed.) and the rest according to the actual consumption indicated by the meter (the so-called consumption component, note ed.),” reminds architect Marcela Kubů from the Association of Mineral Insulation Manufacturers.

In addition, the consumption component also has certain limits. Heating costs per square meter of eligible floor area must not be more than a fifth lower and twice higher than the average in the house.

And if the consumption component of the costs will be lower than 80 percent of the average value of the heating costs for the billing unit, the recipient of the services of this apartment will pay exactly 80 percent of the average value of the costs.

Basic and consumption component

  • The basic component expresses the part of the heating costs that is not dependent on the behavior of service recipients.
  • The ratio of the consumption component (measured or indicated values) can range from 50% to 70%.
  • At the same time, the differences in heating costs per 1 m2 the countable floor areas may not exceed a value 20% lower and a value 100% higher compared to the average of the billing unit for service recipients where meters according to the metrology law (calorimeters) or devices for distributing heating costs (indicators) are installed in the billing unit given accounting period. In other words, it can range from −20% to +100%.
  • If the apartment is not used or unheated for a long time, then the recipient of the services of this apartment will pay 80% of the average value of heating costs per billing unit (non-heating) or 200% of the average value of heating costs per billing unit (overheating) so that service recipients of other apartments are not harmed.
  • Source: MMR

The article is in Czech

Tags: quarter households troubled expensive energy throttling heating

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