Energy usage log

Simple living, extreme early retirement, being wealthy, ...
User avatar
cmonkey
Posts: 1452
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 11:56 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by cmonkey » Mon Nov 28, 2016 6:20 pm

Damn! I thought I had found an easy to fix energy sink. It's only 1.5 Watts, not 1.5 amps. I have never seen a device label with watts.

The fish have their bubbles back. :?

User avatar
cmonkey
Posts: 1452
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 11:56 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by cmonkey » Fri Dec 02, 2016 11:05 am

I have the Kill-A-Watt and spent a fun hour or two logging some stuff. Some surprises!

Fridge - Compressor runs at 130-150 watts. The lights run at 50 watt each so max is 250 watts for the whole unit. This was the biggest surprise! Over 12 hours it used .56 KWH. I'm going to let it log for 10 days and multiply by 3 to get my monthly usage. Why is this thing rated for 7.5 amps? I have it on 5 of 10 setting, so maybe I'll turn it up and see.

Aquarium - 10 watts total, including lights.

Automatic chicken door - .5 watts open, 1.1 watts closed

Christmas lights - 30 watts per string. We have 5.

Nightlight (incandescent) - 7 watts

Home theater system (27 inch tv, old dvd player and a 15 year old surround system) - 90 watts for everything

Vintage video game center - 35 watts for the old CRT tv and 8 watts for the SNES

Coffee maker - 900 watts for ~4-5 minutes. Based on this I will use 1 KWH every 17 pots of coffee. Usually only make a max of 2 per day so looking at ~4 KWH monthly.

Toaster - 750 watts per side. We almost never use it though.

Kitchenaid mixer - 160 watts on high, 30 watts on low

Electric can open (don't ask me why we have this) - 60 watts. Again, we never use this much.




Clearly I am not finding any energy sinks so I'll keep looking. My next targets are the microwave and computer. I suspect using our stove accounts for at least half of usage.

jacob
Site Admin
Posts: 8943
Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:38 pm
Location: USA, Zone 5b, Koppen Dfa, Elev. 620ft, Walkscore 73
Contact:

Re: Energy usage log

Post by jacob » Fri Dec 02, 2016 11:17 am

@cmonkey - I'm guessing it's the starting current/spike of the compressor. You can make toast on a frying pan (no oil) if you want to get rid of the toaster.

User avatar
jennypenny
Posts: 5184
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:20 pm
Location: Stepford USA

Re: Energy usage log

Post by jennypenny » Fri Dec 02, 2016 11:27 am

cmonkey wrote:I have the Kill-A-Watt and spent a fun hour or two logging some stuff. Some surprises!
It's fun to play with, isn't it? My next target is the Christmas tree. If it's too much, I'm going to try putting solar lights on the tree since we set it up in the sunroom. They should get enough of a charge to light up the tree for a few hours at night. I keep solar lanterns in that room to use around the house at night, and they last until bedtime.

For toast alternatives, see avatar. :D

User avatar
cmonkey
Posts: 1452
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 11:56 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by cmonkey » Fri Dec 02, 2016 11:40 am

@jacob, good idea. The burner uses at least 1200 watts which is more than the toaster, but we'd have counter space. It'll have to go through committee approval first. ;)

@JP, yes is it super fun! DW is more relieved than annoyed by this round of eccentricity actually because now I'm not complaining about the Christmas lights and the fridge anymore.

I have also had my eye on this as well, so I can monitor the large circuits. :D A good example.

User avatar
jennypenny
Posts: 5184
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:20 pm
Location: Stepford USA

Re: Energy usage log

Post by jennypenny » Fri Dec 02, 2016 11:53 am

Ha, that last one looks like Scott2's budget diagram from the other thread.

I've also been looking at switching to a 'green' electric supplier who advertises that they rely solely on wind power. I haven't done much research yet, but assuming it's what they advertise, I might be more comfortable with that if we don't install solar this year.

User avatar
cmonkey
Posts: 1452
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 11:56 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by cmonkey » Fri Dec 02, 2016 12:00 pm

Actually that last one wasn't the one I was looking for. This one has the most detailed electric usage I've found.

There are ways to monitor any circuit, although this site is more directed toward folks with geo systems, which is how I found it in the first place. I'd like to have one on each circuit, or at least anything over 20 amps.

User avatar
cmonkey
Posts: 1452
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 11:56 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by cmonkey » Mon Dec 05, 2016 12:23 pm

jennypenny wrote:My PC (on an average of 16 hours/day) is over $60/month. :shock:

I have been testing our desktop and it is running at about 110 watts sitting idle (30 watts for LCD screen and 80 watts for the tower). Under full load it goes to about 200 watts. Our power supply is 600 watts capable, so that tells me that the internals are undersized. When it goes to sleep (10-20 minutes of idle) it consumes 10 watts. Daily kWh are looking to be similar to the fridge, so perhaps $3-$5/month to run.

To get this high of power usage, do you have an Alienware/gaming rig?? Are you processing SETI?


Also, after 3 days of monitoring the fridge, usage was the same. About 1.33 kWh/day so I am paying $3-$4 per month to run my full sized fridge. No justification to get a mini at this point. DW is pleased.


I am fairly sure the 80/20 rule can account for our bill at this point as its two big things taking up most of our bill (stove & water heater). Our water heater is 5500 watt and runs for 1-2 hours daily, which accounts for most of our non-HVAC usage. I am going to turn down the thermostat from 140F.

I can tackle the water heater by hooking up the desuperheater on our geo system. When it runs in the winter and summer, it is supposed to reduce our hot water bill by over 85%. I bought a small tank for it right after we got the geo system, but I never installed it so that's on the radar to do soon.

User avatar
Chris
Posts: 495
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 2010 2:44 pm

Re: Energy usage log

Post by Chris » Mon Dec 05, 2016 6:34 pm

cmonkey wrote: I have been testing our desktop and it is running at about 110 watts sitting idle (30 watts for LCD screen and 80 watts for the tower). Under full load it goes to about 200 watts. Our power supply is 600 watts capable, so that tells me that the internals are undersized. When it goes to sleep (10-20 minutes of idle) it consumes 10 watts.
When I did my Kill-a-watt rampage some years ago, I researched a lot about PC power usage.

The power supply converts AC to DC, so there is a lot of loss there. Upgrading to an 80-plus power supply brought a significant improvement over the stock power supply I had been using. I also learned that peak efficiency is reached at certain load factors; the low-end tends to be where they are least efficient. So I actually ended up getting a smaller PSU, since I expected my future upgrades to be more miserly power consumers (and they were).

My current rig runs at 40 watts idle, 1 watt sleeping. Your idle seems high, though I don't know what your hardware is. Modern CPUs -- even fast ones -- should govern their frequency down when not working (which is most of the time). I would check your OS setting for that. Also, be sure that your CPU can really idle... you might have processing keeping the CPU running at a higher speed. Intel offers PowerTop for Linux that provides lots of useful info about identifying processes causing power consumption. I'm sure there is something similar for Windows.

User avatar
cmonkey
Posts: 1452
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 11:56 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by cmonkey » Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:46 pm

We got our December bill and it is a little better than last year when you look under the covers. In 2015 the average temp was 36, this year it was 25. We had some cold weather in the first half of the month.

We used about the same kWh, 1280. Well over half of that is the geo system. It uses 23 kWh/day in 20-30F degree temps, and up to 35kWh/day in 0-20F. The aux hasn't kicked on yet down to about -5. Last year it would have. So our insulating is starting pay for itself.

Prices are also half a cent cheaper this year so our bill was $8 less.


It also dawned on me how I can solve 3 cooking problems with 1 solution - our slower cooker.

1. I find cooking in the evening to be an inconvenience. I'm hungry so I just want something ready made.
2. The stove uses a lot of energy. Just 2 burners for 30 minutes would be 1.5 kWh.
3. Less DISHES!

Our slower cooker uses 260 watts on high and 162 watts on low. So we are gonna start using it several times per week.

User avatar
fiby41
Posts: 650
Joined: Tue Jan 13, 2015 8:09 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by fiby41 » Thu May 11, 2017 12:27 am

Image
Now I have to see how much this'll increase now that we've started using AC.

As compared to the post I made 2 years ago, the bill has halved. I suspect the PC breaking down.
But new addition is the laptop which is comatose as it shuts down if not charging.
New additions last year Jan/Feb were fridge and a working TV. But both had 5 star energy rating.

User avatar
vexed87
Posts: 1159
Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2015 8:02 am
Location: Yorkshire, UK

Re: Energy usage log

Post by vexed87 » Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:09 am

DW and I have been in the new house for a month now. It's 1180 sq ft, 3 bedroom detached.

Electricity meter indicates 144 kWh used over last 30 days.
Gas a little more complicated, because I don't have all the details to calculate kWh, but using estimates I came up with a figure of 386kWh.

I'm quite pleased with these figures, they are on the lower end of UK usage, there's definitely room to improve though. The house needs to be decked out with more efficient LED lighting, lots of inefficient halogen down lighters in at the moment. Heating hasn't been used except for maybe the first week in the house during some cooler weather, the water boiler is <70% efficient, G rated. :shock: We won't bother replacing this until it breaks down though as it might take a long time to pay back for an early upgrade given our lower than average usage. Being a new build, there's plenty of insulation in already, I think the house still needs some basic weather stripping and some draughts plugging, given that we are not heating the house at this time of year, I can put that off a while until we have decorated.

The house came with an 8 year old dishwasher, I'm sure that's pretty inefficient too, but again we won't be replacing it unless it breaks down. I think I can halve our water heating costs by setting the hot water timer to run for 30 minutes in the evening, rather than setting it running manually with the +1 hour setting when we need the hot water. I haven't yet figured out the timer setup, it's on my list of stuff to do! I think the tank is on the larger size for a two person household, but if we heat it up, it usually lasts us a couple of days before the temp drops too much, which is good going.

User avatar
cmonkey
Posts: 1452
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 11:56 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by cmonkey » Tue Jun 06, 2017 8:15 am

Our energy bill for May dropped 20 bucks from last year, down to 80 from 100. Air drying baby!
vexed87 wrote: DW and I have been in the new house for a month now. It's 1180 sq ft, 3 bedroom detached.
Am I to assume a journal update is in progress? ;)

User avatar
vexed87
Posts: 1159
Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2015 8:02 am
Location: Yorkshire, UK

Re: Energy usage log

Post by vexed87 » Tue Jun 06, 2017 8:48 am

off topic:

@cmonkey, I have been consciously neglecting it, partly because savings have dropped percipitously, whilst I have been busy emptying my savings accounts buying garden tools, and other more tedious stuff like curtains, fridge freezers, washing machines etc (all with a mind to optimise energy efficency of course. :lol:) Also, I'm being as patient as possible and not diving into remodelling everything right off the bat due to permaculture's golden rule of just observing your space and seeing what work's and what doesn't before making changes, hence not a great deal to share just yet!

back on topic:
WRT air drying, I'm thinking of DIY'ing washing line, just need something to attach a line from the house to, I just acquired a roof rack to haul timber home to build something like this: https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/or ... e622df.jpg
Sadly it's not going to save me much energy due to there being no drier in at baseline! :mrgreen:

User avatar
fiby41
Posts: 650
Joined: Tue Jan 13, 2015 8:09 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by fiby41 » Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:40 am

fiby41 wrote:
Thu May 11, 2017 12:27 am
Now I have to see how much this'll increase now that we've started using AC.
Note on the bill says usage increased by about 30% as compared to same month last year.

Insulated gaps at the hinges of the door and window with tape and bubble wrap, halfway through last month. Hopeful this'll reduce as summer is over.
Last edited by fiby41 on Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
cmonkey
Posts: 1452
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 11:56 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by cmonkey » Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:57 am

Actually my usage dropped by a lot more than 20%. Last year we used 788 kwh, this year was 485 kwh. The last time we were this low was January 2013 which was before we had the geo heating.

Amazingly, we used 733 last month and paid 2 dollars less than this month. Stupid summer rates. :evil:

User avatar
FBeyer
Posts: 645
Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2015 3:25 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by FBeyer » Fri Jun 09, 2017 11:43 am

It has now been one year since we got the keys for our house.
Total KwH expenditure over 12 months: 329.

Threehundredandtwentynine.

User avatar
cmonkey
Posts: 1452
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 11:56 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by cmonkey » Fri Jun 09, 2017 12:04 pm

Geeze. sqft?

User avatar
FBeyer
Posts: 645
Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2015 3:25 am

Re: Energy usage log

Post by FBeyer » Fri Jun 09, 2017 12:52 pm

About 965 ft2, two adults and one 3 year old.

Electronics are a tablet and a laptop computer. Induction stove, we use it for heating water rather than the microwave. Energy efficient fridge. We use the oven approx. twice per week for baking. Most of the house's activity is in the living room where the lights are almost never on during summer (the sun sets at 23...) but on most of the time during winter. We can comfortably light the entire living room with two light sources because we 'hacked' our floor lamp by installing a lampshade from a ceiling lamp on the floor lamp. With our 'minimalist' decoration scheme that lamp actually looks totally natural.

Post Reply