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 Post subject: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Fri 19, 2017 11:39 pm 
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Location: Haledon, NJ, usa
Am I normal like this or out of synch with everyone else?

I can't quite fully understand what the physical or mental reasons are for this dual comfort zone difference with me.

In the winter months I set the daily heat thermostat at 68-70 and down to 67-68 when I go to bed.
Anything warmer and I would be just too uncomfortably warm around the house or in bed.

So I wonder why it is then ... that in the Summer months I only set the A/C thermostat down at 75 degrees and I'm perfectly comfy.
Anything lower will give me an uncomfortable chill.

I use the exact same bedding all year. A top sheet w/ a light fiber-fill comforter.

The puzzle to me is that I would never feel comfortable with the heat set way up at 75 in Winter time ....but it it sure seems perfectly comfortable for A/C in the Summer. And 68 would freeze me out!

Likewise I would feel sweaty hot in the winter if I had the heat set way up at 75 !
But 68-70 feels so perfect!

Weird?

Summer = 75
Winter = 68

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 12:48 am 
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Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
It has to do with the amount of water vapor in the air, which affects the rate of evaporation of perspiration from the skin.
It isn't rocket science, but it is a bit involved for me to explain.
A picture may help.
Attachment:
comfort_zone.gif
comfort_zone.gif [ 22.22 KiB | Viewed 319 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 1:42 am 
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Location: Tucson, Arizona U.S.A.
Some possibilities:

Your body probably gets used to the seasonal temperatures when you go outside.

The calibration of your thermostats may not agree.

In the winter, your heater is blowing warm air and you warm up faster than the thermostat. In the summer, the cooler is blowing cold air and you cool off faster than the thermostat. The thermostat is probably mounted on a wall which has considerable thermal inertia and air circulation through the thermostat is probably poor.

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 4:36 am 
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Location: Simonton, Texas
Peter, those are about the same settings I use winter and summer down here in Texas.

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 4:54 am 
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Location: Lincoln City, OR
Greetings to Mark and the Forum:

I must confess that I do not understand the graph. I am obviously reading it wrong, because it seems to imply that there is no temperature at which one may be comfortable at relative humidities lower than 40% or greater than 60%.

I believe that I have been in climates with less than 40% relative humidity and yet was able to find a temperature at which I was comfortable.

Perhaps the "comfort zone" is dealing not only with temperature but also a comfortable humidity? If so, combining the two factors would seem to complicate the issue, as the original question dealt only with perceived temperature.

Regards,

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 5:32 am 
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Location: Haledon, NJ, usa
Both my digital A/C cool-air thermostat as well as my digital Hot-water-baseboard-heat thermostat are a single combined unit.
Therefore they both use the same temperature sensor to activate.
So I'm pretty certain that the temps seen on the display are accurate.

This thermostat, as is typical in most in northern climates, is located in the center of the house on an inside wall so as not to be affected by minor outside temperature variations.

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 8:22 am 
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Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Jthorusen wrote:
I must confess that I do not understand the graph. I am obviously reading it wrong, because it seems to imply that there is no temperature at which one may be comfortable at relative humidities lower than 40% or greater than 60%.

You are reading the chart correctly. I posted it as an example of a possible explanation of the effect that Pbpix was describing.
Jthorusen wrote:
I believe that I have been in climates with less than 40% relative humidity and yet was able to find a temperature at which I was comfortable.

Correct again. The chart is an aid for HVAC engineers to design systems to achieve certain results.
Jthorusen wrote:
Perhaps the "comfort zone" is dealing not only with temperature but also a comfortable humidity? If so, combining the two factors would seem to complicate the issue, as the original question dealt only with perceived temperature.

Exactly, the thermostat only senses dry bulb temperature. Here is a more detailed psychrometric chart that may shed more light on the subject.
Attachment:
Comfort_Zones_cropped.png
Comfort_Zones_cropped.png [ 252.82 KiB | Viewed 226 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 10:23 am 
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Location: Ashhurst, New Zealand
I used to work in a laboratory where the air conditioning and humidity were closely controlled to 20degs C (68F) and 55% RH. In the summer I would wear a short sleeved shirt and lightweight trousers and sometimes shorts. In the winter I would have a sweater and heavier trousers. At both times I would feel quite comfortable. Everybody else was the same. Strange.

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Last edited by majoco on May Sat 20, 2017 9:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 12:56 pm 
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Location: Lehighton, PA.
Science goes out the window; if the heat is on at 72 degrees the wife says she's hot, if the AC is on at 74 degrees the wife says she's cold. There is no scientific rhyme or reason, it's all in the head. Probably has a lot to do with why I stock Jack Daniels. :wink:

Larry

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 1:14 pm 
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Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
rocketeer wrote:
Science goes out the window; if the heat is on at 72 degrees the wife says she's hot, if the AC is on at 74 degrees the wife says she's cold. There is no scientific rhyme or reason, it's all in the head. Probably has a lot to do with why I stock Jack Daniels. :wink:

Larry

Truer words never written. My wife believes that if it 90 outside then it should be 68 inside and if it is 40 outside then it should be 78 inside.
An office full of large women will always be hot and a church full of little old ladies will always be cold.

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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 2:58 pm 
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There were a couple of thermostat designs in electronics magazines in the 1950s or 60s that used an outside temperature sensor to modify how the thermostat reacted to inside temperature changes. My favorite was a brief article in one of the 1930s Shortwave magazines that proposed using RF energy to heat the occupants without having to heat the structure; the illustration accompanying the article showed a happy couple lightly dressed while ice formed on the inside of their windows. Apparently cooking the occupants never caught on as a practical approach to climate control :)

Rodger WQ9E


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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 5:08 pm 
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Maybe programmable thermostats need an option to program the displayed temperature with a seasonal offset :D


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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 5:52 pm 
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Location: Iowa Falls, IA
As the seasons change our bodies seem to perceive temperatures in a different way. Where I live it it gets 50 degrees in January, that seems really warm. However, 50 degrees in July is cold. I guess it is what we are used to at the time.


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 Post subject: Re: Interesting temp comfort puzzle
PostPosted: May Sat 20, 2017 6:39 pm 
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Location: Beautiful Downtown Burbank CA
My experience with thermostats that I've changed (hundreds) that read/operate incorrectly are due to the hole isn't sealed where the wire comes out of the wall. Cold air comes up the wall through that hole and alters the true room temp reading. Easy fix.


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