Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Metering an easy way to cut consumption

Good Energy Shop is a good place to get two essential items for the house. One is an OWL meter that measures the total energy consumption of the house, at any one moment or accumulated over time. Having a Display in the house immediately prompts you to hunt down the culprits, eg a light left on in bedroom, towelrail, TV on standby etc. - the hunting instinct pays off! You connect one part of it to your meter cable, and the Display unit is free to position anywhere in the house (wifi connection to the meter).

Some items use power when on stand by, and some items use energy even when turned off (but the socket left on). For individual power consumptions, you need an meter for an appliance. The Brennenstuhl meter allows you to check individual items, eg to check the standby consumption of a TV, to know how much your kettle or microwave use. By measuring the accumulated power, you can see how much a full dishwashing cycle takes, or your washing machine. Smart fridges have various power consumptions depending on what they are doing, so you can zero the meter, then leave the fridge to work for a day or a few days, and find out the average daily use by reading the accumulated power consumption over that time.
I am making an inventory of every item in my house, to check its consumption when off, on standby or sleep, and when on and active.

Yes... I am becoming a meter and switch-off bore in my household, but for the research project, it's important to research the performance of the house and its appliances.

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