Thursday, January 26, 2006


One unit of electricity is 1KWH or 1000 watts for 1 hour. You can find out the costs of price per unit from your electricity supplier.

I have been monitoring our supply and we use about 15KWH per day on average which seems high to me but actually is probably normal. The following information from the energy saving centre, give an indication of the amounts used per appliance.
Freezer- upright and chest about 1 to 1.5 units per day
Fridge freezer about 1.5 units per day
Fridge less than 1 unit per day

Convector heater 2KW 30 mins = 1unit
Fan heater 2KW 30 mins = 1 unit
Infra red heater 1KW 1 hours warmth – 1 unit
Oil filled radiator 500W 2 hours warmth = 1 unit
Panel heater 1.5KW 40 mins = 1 unit
Electric heater ( 3KW) 20 mins = 1 unit
Immersion heater ( 3KW) on 1 hour = 3 units

Dishwasher one full load = 1.5 units
Tumble dryer full load of cottons = 3.5 units
Full load of synthetics = 2 units
Washing machine load of synthetics at 40 C- less than 1 unit
Load of cottons at 60C – about 1 unit

Cooker and Hob about 1.5 units per day
Kettle 12 pints of boiling water = 1 unit
Microwave( 850W) 20 mins on full power = less than 0.5 unit
Toaster 60 slices of toast = about 1 unit

Single electric underblanket 1.5 hours per night for 1 week, 1 unit
Extractor fan 24 hours use = 1 to 2 units
Hairdryer 12 10 mins sessions = 1 unit
Shower ( 7KWH) 5 mins, 7 days per week = 4 units

Some of the choices we can make are to find a supplier that provides value for money or provides green electricity. To compare prices, look here.

The next step would be to change all the lightbulbs to energy saving ones and although its costs more, they use 1/5 electricity and last 8 to 10 times longer.

You can work out an amount of KWH per day on average that suits your lifestyle and see whether you want to reduce any of it.

For our family, we could use less electricity by switching the bulbs, and ensuring that appliances and lights are switched off at night and not on standby. I intend to make these changes over the next few months and then see whether we are making savings at all. To me it is not just the cost element here but looking at how we can be part of a solution to reducing our energy needs, being aware that energy resources are limited and that the price of fuel is likely to increase in the future. So before you buy an appliance and plug it in, you could find out how many units it is going to set you back on running costs. The reason for calculating this for us is that I would like to consider photovoltaic solar panels to provide our electricity. That’s a project for the future though. Starting small.

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