Gizmotech wrote:AVNicholls wrote:
It's hard in that they don't have central heating. Meaning each room has its own heater, or if your house is smaller it has one heater in the main room, as opposed to coming through vents. This means there is a tendancy to heat only the rooms your in. Also if you have a larger house it means that hallways etc may not be reached by your main heater. It also means you'll likely be buying a few small electric heaters for bathrooms etc.
I don't understand why he would ever wake up to a room below freezing though. I just set the timer on my heater. I have it on while I'm awake get the main room I live in warm before bed. I turn it off at bed time but have the timer set to come on an hour or two before I wake up (earlier for colder nights later for warmer nights). That way the house will cool down while I tucked under a large, heavy winter futon and heat up before I have to get out of it.
The biggest hassle is the cost. It's all done by gas/kerosene and that can be quite pricy. In the winter most people around here pay well over 10 000 a month to keep their house and water heated. If you're a penny pincher you may have a cold house. If you budget for it and decide your well being is worth it then it shouldn't be a big problem.
Having said that I will admit Japan could really benefit from better insulation and central heating. It's one thing I do get a bit homesick for.
wow... your heater has a timer? I didn't know any part of Japan had joined the 20th century as far as house design and amenities were concerned. I wonder if because you're up in hokkaido you have maybe a smidge of insulation? Temperature drops like a stone as soon as the heater goes off, and it takes better part of an hour to warm up my one 6 tatami room (nevermind the hallway(kitchen) area) to about 10C. I'm lucky at least, my walls are cement. I have a friend in an old, drafty, Japanese house that belongs in Q-shoe, and he just gave up on heating it... it wasn't worth the fight.
Think it might just unlucky on your part I don't know anyone without a timer and I had a heater in Niigata too and it had a timer... Though I never used it because my apartment was so tiny a cheap little electric one worked well enough.