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Articles Archive for November 2009

Heating »

[29 Nov 2009 | 7 Comments | 6,242 views]

I was recently called to consult on an energy problem in a home with a portable, oil-filled space heater in the master bedroom. The owner was complaining that the room was still cold even after running the unit all night. Plus, he was concerned the unit was costing too much money to run every night for 12 hours. So…how much energy does the unit use? Let’s find out.

Electricity, Featured »

[19 Nov 2009 | 3 Comments | 13,255 views]

Let’s be clear:
Even if you have a natural gas dryer, it still has an electrical cost. That is, it still uses some level of electricity to run. The heaviest electrical cost is the motor which rotates the cylinder and tumbles the clothes. Electricity in a gas powered dryer does not provide heat.
My natural gas dryer, rated at 6A @ 120VAC, in theory, consumes 720w of power.
This comes right from the label on the dryer.
Putting the electrical consumption to the test
Of course, I no longer believe labels. I want to see …

Electricity, Featured »

[19 Nov 2009 | 4 Comments | 7,742 views]

My recent experiment with how much energy it takes to run a microwave really had me thinking…if the label was a little off on the microwave, could the labels on other appliances be wrong as well?
No sooner than I turn around in my house from the microwave to find the coffee maker sitting right there. Of course! Coffee. I love coffee, like most other people. I run my coffee maker everyday because its far cheaper to make coffee at home than go out and buy a cup of coffee on …

Do It Yourself Projects, Featured »

[18 Nov 2009 | No Comment | 43 views]

If there’s one thing I’ve learned doing home energy audits, repairs, and consultations its this: you always need to have the right tools for the job. Its true in any profession, any contracting gig, or even any job. You need the tools.  Tools help you develop your skills. The two, I’m convinced, go hand in hand.
So, do you have a home energy toolbox? It doesn’t have to be an actual toolbox, it could be a bag, cardboard box, or just an abstract idea and collection of tools.
Every homeowner needs an …

Electricity »

[18 Nov 2009 | No Comment | 2,117 views]

Think your microwave just uses the 1200 watts it advertises on the little sticker? Think again. It uses more energy than you think, and in places you probably wouldn’t even think to look. Let’s take a look at the typical energy waste/usage of your microwave.