Kill-a-Watt Electricity

kill-a-watt-electricityKill-a-Watt Electricity monitor let’s you know how much electricity something is drawing. All you do it plug your appliance into this handheld device and it tells you how many watts it is using. Here is a quote directly from the Kill-A-Watt manufacturer’s site:

“Connect your appliances into the Kill A Watt™, and assess how efficient they are. A large LCD display counts consumption by the Kilowatt-hour just like utility companies. You can figure out your electrical expenses by the hour, day, week, month, even an entire year. Monitor the quality of your power by displaying Voltage, Line Frequency, and Power Factor.”

I measured a few things in my house that I keep plugged in all the time. I never unplug it and it’s always plugged in because it would be a pain in the butt to unplug it when I’m not using it. The first thing was my microwave. I leave it plugged in all the time and it uses about 2 watts to show the clock on there. When calculated into dollars a year, it costs about $2 a year just to keep it plugged in. It may not sound like a lot, but let’s take a total of all the appliances I have plugged in all the time.

My cable box is a huge drainer of money. I leave that on also with my TV on standby mode. Those two combined is about 105 watts. I leave mine on all the time. Also while my TV may appear that it is off, it still has a red light indicating that it is in standby mode. This draws about 2 watts even when it appears off. So with my cable box alone, I’m spending $100 a year just by leaving it on. That is such a waste.

I always wondered how much energy Christmas lights take because some people have tons of lights during Christmas season. One strand of multi-colored Christmas lights is about 40 watts. A typical house has about 5 strands of these Christmas lights during the holiday season. During the holiday season, it would cost about $20 just to have all these lights plugged in.

Lastly I tried seeing how much my nightlight drained the battery. It uses an efficient LED light so I figured it wouldn’t drain too much energy. Also, it automatically shuts off when there’s light and turns on for about 12 hours out of the night, depending on the time of the year. Calculated in to a dollar amount, it is actually about 45 cents just to run the nightlight for a year. That 45 cents is well spent keeping the night monsters away and keeping me from stubbing my toe when I get up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night.

I would recommend Kill A Watt to anyone who wants to see how to save money on electricity.

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