With a data-logger, measure different temperatures around the school . Take the temperatures every 30 minutes. From Thursday to Tuesday during the heating season (usually October to April) is a good time.

Download the data into a computer and print out the results as a graph or a table.

The target temperatures during school hours are...

Classrooms and offices 18°c Corridors, stairs and toilets 15°c Assembly hall 14 to 18°c

Look for the signs of possible energy waste that are described below. They indicate problems with either the heating system or the way warmth is managed by pupils and teachers.

W = Wasteful and uncomfortable

U = Unpleasant for working

Repeat the measurements in other parts of the school to see if any problems are widespread. Suggest to your teacher how the situation might be improved.


Possible causes

Part of school reaches target temperature well before school starts. Boiler starts too early for the coldness of the morning. (W)

Part of school only reaches target temperature after lessons have started. Boiler starts too late for the coldness of the morning; or pipes and radiators not working correctly. (U)

Temperarture drops during breaks and lunch times. Doors being left open allowing heat to escape. (W)

Temperature rises above target. Thermostat set too high, or too much heat from sun, or overcrowded classroom, or heat-producing activities. (U)

Part of school stays at target temperature after school finishes. Boiler not shutting down early enough in the afternoon for the weather conditions. (W)

Part of school below target before school finishes. Boiler shutting down too early in the afternoon for the weather conditions. (U)

Part of school at target temperature overnight. Boiler controls incorrectly set. (W)

Part of school at target temperature during weekend. Boiler controls incorrectly set. (W)

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