Author Topic: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?  (Read 3673 times)

mmmainm

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P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« on: November 11, 2016, 08:51:05 AM »
Is the P3 Kill-a-Watt Device worth it?  See amazon.

I was thinking on getting it to test various appliances (fridge, for basic load).

And to see whether or not some devices were actually vampires.

Thanks.
Mac

zolotiyeruki

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2016, 09:29:10 AM »
I have one.  It's kinda cool to use, but there are a couple drawbacks:
1) you have to unplug things to plug them into the killawatt, and it blocks neighboring outlets
2) it hasn't really changed my electricity usage.  Part of that is the fact that you have to move it around to every individual device, plug it in, wait a day to get a decent average measurement, etc.

Laserjet3051

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2016, 10:04:57 AM »
Yes. I bought one recently, and it has proven very useful. We may have preconceived notions on current/power draw that do not reflect the reality of a particular device. Coming to terms with the true power consumption of our devices can modify and streamline our behaviors and associated costs. For example, I learned that my vacuum cleaner consumes far more power than originally believed. I vacuum less, sweep more now. Also learned that my device chargers, when no device is connected, draw virtually no current/power, leading to modified behaviors. Realized how INSANELY expensive using my electric oven is per hour of cook time. We have gas stove and propane BBQ so now what used to go in the oven goes on the stove or BBQ (Thanksgiving day turkey excluded). These realizations have certainly fine tuned our power consumption leading to real $ savings.

stlbrah

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2016, 11:49:56 AM »
some libraries have them for borrow, might be worth calling to check if yours does

Mother Fussbudget

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2016, 11:57:01 AM »
+1.  Very informative.  Ask around on social media if someone you know has one they'll lend.

HipGnosis

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2016, 01:22:54 PM »
some libraries have them for borrow, might be worth calling to check if yours does
Thanks for sharing that.  I had no idea.

AlanStache

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2016, 01:33:20 PM »
Yeah barrow one if you can.  Not sure it will save you money but is good to know what things actually cost to run or what they draw while idling.  Somethings use more than you thought, somethings will use literally nothing; is good to know what to worry about and what not to.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2016, 06:13:45 AM »
Belkin makes one that has the monitor on a cord so you don't have to see the outlet to read the power consumption. I also find it more intuitive than the Killawatt.

mmmainm

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2016, 07:20:45 AM »
Goblin,

Do you know the name on that Belkin device?

Thanks.

GrumpyPenguin

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2016, 08:28:01 AM »
I second the advice about checking whether your library offers to check them out.  Mine does.  They also lend out the devices that can identify where you might be leaking heat during the winter.

Sayonara925

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2016, 09:38:35 AM »
Yes. I bought one recently, and it has proven very useful. We may have preconceived notions on current/power draw that do not reflect the reality of a particular device. Coming to terms with the true power consumption of our devices can modify and streamline our behaviors and associated costs. For example, I learned that my vacuum cleaner consumes far more power than originally believed. I vacuum less, sweep more now. Also learned that my device chargers, when no device is connected, draw virtually no current/power, leading to modified behaviors. Realized how INSANELY expensive using my electric oven is per hour of cook time. We have gas stove and propane BBQ so now what used to go in the oven goes on the stove or BBQ (Thanksgiving day turkey excluded). These realizations have certainly fine tuned our power consumption leading to real $ savings.

Interesting.  Negligible amount of power used?  So we shouldn't bother constantly disconnecting the phone/tablet chargers.
When I turn on my phone after charging a pop-up appears:  "Unplug the charger from the outlet to conserve energy."

I've purchased several small switch devices that go between the outlet and the charger to shut off the power draw so I'm not constantly unplugging/plugging.  Maybe they're unnecessary.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2016, 12:23:21 PM »
Interesting.  Negligible amount of power used?  So we shouldn't bother constantly disconnecting the phone/tablet chargers.
When I turn on my phone after charging a pop-up appears:  "Unplug the charger from the outlet to conserve energy."

I've purchased several small switch devices that go between the outlet and the charger to shut off the power draw so I'm not constantly unplugging/plugging.  Maybe they're unnecessary.
That's correct--those small adapters waste very, very little energy.  If you're looking for bigger culprits, look at everything connected to your TV--the cable box, the DVR, the receiver/amp, the TV itself.

mmmainm

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #12 on: November 15, 2016, 05:54:19 AM »
Thanks for all the comments, folks.
Mac

dcheesi

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #13 on: November 15, 2016, 06:25:39 AM »
I would also add that I had reliability issues with the smart power strips that I bought to try to tame "vampire" consumption. They were the kind that switch power on to the accessories when they sense the main device (typically a computer) is turned on. They were APC branded, not fly-by-night stuff, but the device-sensing function still failed within a year on both of them. In the end I doubt I broke even on that purchase.

FrugalInTheBigSky

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #14 on: November 15, 2016, 06:59:13 AM »
I borrowed one from our library. As others have said, it hogs the outlet because it is big, but it was a useful tool. I didn't try it on the oven/stove (which I use a lot) or fridge because I figured I wasn't going to change out those appliances or my use of them. But I might borrow it again this winter to get different readings on our chest freezers that are in an insulated but unheated garage.

techwiz

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #15 on: November 15, 2016, 11:42:47 AM »
Yes it is worth it.

I borrowed one from the local library then used it to measure a bunch of lights and devices and wrote down how much draw was on each. It's an excellent tool to demonstrate the amount of power is being used. This helps show the kids the costs of leaving the lights on.  It's also help find any big power wasters.

For example we found that an old Halogen room lamp was drawing a crazy amount of watts, no wonder that light could heat up the room. We replaced that light ,but now that it's winter my wife notices that the room is much cooler now. Putting on a sweater is much cheaper than heating up the room with a electric light!
   

Prairie Stash

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #16 on: November 16, 2016, 12:33:41 PM »
I like mine, I got it for free as a gift from work. After a few months the novelty wore off and I use it rarely now. I would gladly lend it out, if anyone asked me for it. Put a request in with your friends, lots of people have these lying around their house.

I modified some behavior after using it and I have saved money as a result. The big change was the rarely (once/month) used Xbox one uses a lot of power even when turned off, simple fix of a power strip. Most of us have similar anecdotes after using one of these. What will be yours?

Sayonara925

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #17 on: November 27, 2016, 05:16:29 PM »
Belkin makes one that has the monitor on a cord so you don't have to see the outlet to read the power consumption. I also find it more intuitive than the Killawatt.
Goblin,

Do you know the name on that Belkin device?

Thanks.

This one?  http://www.belkin.com/us/p/P-F7C005/

Sayonara925

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Re: P3 Kill-a-Watt Device Worth It?
« Reply #18 on: November 27, 2016, 05:26:42 PM »
Came across this random review on the Belkin Device:

Quote
This review is from: Belkin F7C005q Conserve Insight Energy Cost Monitor

Pros: -- meter portion is separated from the plug portion, making it easier to read and use day-to-day.

Cons: -- inaccurate: calibrated the unit against a Fluke clamp meter, and the Belkin reads 50% higher than the actual load. (e.g. a 200W load reads as 300W.)
-- can only measure three units: load (watts), cost (based on avg kwh), CO2 load. Only watts is useful.
-- can only measure point-in-time, not cumulative.

Other Thoughts: -- I have two kill-a-watt units that are more accurate, and give better information about the load, both point-in-time, and cumulative.