Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Load Calculations = How much energy my stuff uses!!

I will gladly thank my husband for telling me the actual title of what I was doing :)

I have been watching my power meter for awhile now, just going out and checking the number every few days and recording it.  So, after a couple of weeks I decided to figure out which appliances in my home were using the most electricity. Here is what I did . . . . . . .

I went through the house and wrote down the amps and the volts for each appliance and calulated the watts, then I multiplied the watts by 1000 to get the kilowatts (which is how your outdoor meter measure electricity usage).  I then multiplied the kilowatts by what the power company charges me per kilowatt hour (the amount of electricity used per hour).  My particular figure for this season is 11.231 cent per kWh (kilowatt hour).  Example:

My dryer (a great example of the typical power-hog)

28 amps x 240 volts = 6720 watts (6.72kWh)
6.72kWh/load (because a typical load takes 1 hour to dry) x 11.231 cent/kWh = 75.5 cent/load

Okay, let's take it out a bit further

75.5/load x 7 loads/week = $5.29/week = $274.82/year

Hmmm, with $274.82/year I could:

1 -  add more/improve insulation around the house to decrease electric bill
2 -  fill my LP tank completely full and my gas tank completely full once each
3 -  buy an entire months worth of groceries
4 -  buy an entire months worth of gas for the car
5 -  pay for 3 months worth of auto insurance
6 -  pay for our home phone for 6 months +
7 -  buy a 7"tablet (if that were on my list)
8 -  buy a large chunk of Christmas gifts for the year
9 -  put tires on my car
10- take the entire family to the dentist for cleanings

What could you do with that much money, and, more importantly, if you know how much energy your appliances use, how much more could you save by making the ones that really drain it more efficient?

I do believe that even just being aware of how much energy your appliances use helps you save money, because awareness increases likelihood of being consiously conservative of the resource. 

More on this topic later . . . . .

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