Author Topic: More convenient way to monitor and control electricity use?  (Read 862 times)

DadJokes

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More convenient way to monitor and control electricity use?
« on: November 27, 2019, 09:14:40 AM »
Does anyone have recommendations on particular smart strips or any other way to see what devices are sucking the most energy and shut off power to them (automatically if possible) when they aren't in use? I've been going around unplugging things not in use for a while now, but laziness and a wife who doesn't like plugging things back in are winning that battle.

nereo

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Re: More convenient way to monitor and control electricity use?
« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2019, 10:46:06 AM »
Does anyone have recommendations on particular smart strips or any other way to see what devices are sucking the most energy and shut off power to them (automatically if possible) when they aren't in use? I've been going around unplugging things not in use for a while now, but laziness and a wife who doesn't like plugging things back in are winning that battle.

The Kill-a-watt works very well to tell you exactly how much electricity any particular device is using, and there is a version whcih you an attach to your circuit breaker which will monitor your whole house-load, and break down individual appliances based on when they cycle on/off.  I used one very successfully to track down some rather sizable energy sucks.


2sk22

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Re: More convenient way to monitor and control electricity use?
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2019, 07:49:57 AM »
In addition to @nereo 's good suggestion, there are other things you can do. For example, I discovered that the fluorescent lights in my basement were consuming a lot more power than I expected. I measured their power consumption using the utility power meter which has a convenient digital readout. I unplugged our fridge for the duration of the experiment and ensured that all other appliances were off. I had to do this on a day when the family was out and I as working from home.

Just Joe

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Re: More convenient way to monitor and control electricity use?
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2019, 09:51:13 AM »
In case you didn't know - there is an LED tube that snaps in place of the fluorescent tube.  One version utilizes the ballast, another version eliminates the ballast. They replaced the tubes in the fixtures in my work place recently.

My plan is to change over as the older bulbs wear out.

HipGnosis

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Re: More convenient way to monitor and control electricity use?
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2019, 11:24:12 AM »
I've read that some libraries loan out kill-a-watts.

Goldielocks

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Re: More convenient way to monitor and control electricity use?
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2019, 02:16:19 PM »
I bought a 5 pack of outlet plug-ins that come with a remote.   I can turn off all the lights / tv / other items using that remote.   It is wonderful for the TV where the plug is tucked away, for the christmas tree, and well, just getting things "off" quickly when it is time for bed.

It's a cheaper version of this.... min e is  from Aliexpress or Amazon.

https://www.amazon.ca/Century-Wireless-Electrical-Household-Appliances/dp/B01N23GRYD/ref=asc_df_B01N23GRYD/?tag=googleshopc0c-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=335603591164&hvpos=1o4&hvnetw=g&hvrand=11520242410986234091&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9001512&hvtargid=pla-348578401176&psc=1


DadJokes

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Re: More convenient way to monitor and control electricity use?
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2019, 07:22:58 AM »
After looking through smart plugs on Amazon (I had no idea those were a thing a week ago), I ended up going with VeSync Smart Plugs by Etekcity.

They came in last night, and I've got a lot of them set up. Since they are just individual plugs, we just kept our surge protectors everywhere and plugged the surge protectors into the smart plugs. Hopefully, that doesn't result in overloading the plugs. We have them all turned off when we're not home, but I'll monitor them when home for the first few weeks.

As of now, they seem pretty awesome, and I think they will be perfect at allowing us to keep down energy consumption without annoying my wife by unplugging everything.

I can now monitor weekly, monthly, and annual energy consumption for each plug individually. From either of our phones, we can turn the outlet on/off, and I can also set up scheduling, which is just amazing. They have compatibility with Alexa, but we've read too many stories about the data collected on people from those devices, so we won't be taking advantage of that feature.