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Old 02-10-2009, 05:07 PM   #16
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


I'm on my 3rd bathroom CFL in over 5 years
Same with the front outside light - mainly because I broke one
All the rest in my house are over 3 years old
These hold approx the same amount of mercury as the fluorescent tube lights at every business. Ever seen any business evacuated??
You would need to lick the bulb to get any appreciable amount. Body builders get more mercury from eating tuna

I bought them due to very low cost & a lot were FREE
If CFL's were expensive I wouldn't buy them
I won't buy LED bulbs at current prices

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Old 02-10-2009, 07:06 PM   #17
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


I was an early adopter for CFL for my basement stairs light, which I like to leave on all the time. I switched it to CFL in about 2001. I believe I'm on my second or third bulb now, which isn't bad for 24/7 usage. An incandescent in the same usage would only last a month or two.

The only thing I'm worried about is getting incandescents for my lava lamps once the ban goes into effect in 2012.
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Old 02-10-2009, 09:11 PM   #18
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


I make my girlfriend ride a stationary cycle attached to a generator when ever we are home and I want to watch TV. If the house humidity gets below a comfortable level, I wrap her in plastice wrap and make her run around the house until her sweat creates a pleasant non-static atmosphere. Making her wash dishes and clothes while in the shower has also lowered our water usage/water heating costs. I also have a hand crank light that she has gotten very good at operating when I want to read my Playboys. And all her experience mowing the 5 acre lawn with the rotary push mower has helped her to more easily chop the wood required to cook my meals in the evening when I get home from the strip club. Another added bonus is that the calluses she has developed from taking care of business has enabled her to open my beer bottles without having to use costly bottle openers! Of course, some of these chores are sometimes hampered by her having to go to work 12-14 hours per day to pay for that beer or the necessary tips needed to frequent my watering holes(strip club).
Oh, and I also try to remember to tell her to turn off the TV after I have passed out and Skinimax has gone off the air.

Brett is expected to make his return back to this forum after his hopeful short term stay in the ICU.
Respectfully,
Brett's FORMER girlfriend
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Last edited by wrangler; 02-10-2009 at 09:16 PM. Reason: Hopeful return
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Old 02-11-2009, 07:03 AM   #19
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


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I make my girlfriend ride a stationary cycle attached to a generator when ever we are home and I want to watch TV. If the house humidity gets below a comfortable level, I wrap her in plastice wrap and make her run around the house until her sweat creates a pleasant non-static atmosphere. Making her wash dishes and clothes while in the shower has also lowered our water usage/water heating costs. I also have a hand crank light that she has gotten very good at operating when I want to read my Playboys. And all her experience mowing the 5 acre lawn with the rotary push mower has helped her to more easily chop the wood required to cook my meals in the evening when I get home from the strip club. Another added bonus is that the calluses she has developed from taking care of business has enabled her to open my beer bottles without having to use costly bottle openers! Of course, some of these chores are sometimes hampered by her having to go to work 12-14 hours per day to pay for that beer or the necessary tips needed to frequent my watering holes(strip club).
Oh, and I also try to remember to tell her to turn off the TV after I have passed out and Skinimax has gone off the air.

Brett is expected to make his return back to this forum after his hopeful short term stay in the ICU.
Respectfully,
Brett's FORMER girlfriend

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Old 02-11-2009, 11:28 AM   #20
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


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These hold approx the same amount of mercury as the fluorescent tube lights at every business. Ever seen any business evacuated??
You would need to lick the bulb to get any appreciable amount. Body builders get more mercury from eating tuna

I bought them due to very low cost & a lot were FREE
If CFL's were expensive I wouldn't buy them
I'm not particularly worried about the mercury but I'm just reporting what my government health authorities are saying. They say that if a CFL bulb breaks you are to evacuate the room and open the windows to let it air out. They probably recommend the same thing for tubes but do you really think a business is going to do that?

I wish my CFLs lasted as long as some of you report. I haven't kept a log but for instance I have a 4 bulb fixture in my bathroom that I switched to CFLs last summer. A month later one went out and was replaced with another CFL. The next month another, then another. Same for a dining room light fixture. So I started replacing them with incandescents as they went and they are all incandescents in the bathroom now and I think only 2 of 5 in the dining room are CFLs.

Regular incandescent bulbs seem to last much longer for me.
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Old 02-11-2009, 03:38 PM   #21
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


I recommend people buy a Kill-a-watt EZ, they're around $36 and will tell you where your money is going. I got it after my electric bill increased by 2x and with it I was able to plug it in to measure different things (a week each time) and have it tell me my fridge is costing me $7.03/month, entertainment center $5.02/month, and wood stove (it has blowers) $6.83/month. It also told me that my entertainment center when sleeping is using $0.11/month I no longer consider that worth my effort to be turning on/off each time I want to use it.

So, I haven't found the culprit that cranked my energy, I can account for about $30 after measuring everything we use so what could be using the other $125...
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Old 02-11-2009, 04:56 PM   #22
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


Did your rates increase?
Or did the actual kWh's being used increase?
Big difference, my kwh has been going down, but my bill really hasn't as rates increase. I also bought KillAwatts, but you can get them for less then $36
I bought 4 dozen as part of a group buy & sell the leftover ones for $22
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Old 02-11-2009, 07:59 PM   #23
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


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So, I haven't found the culprit that cranked my energy, I can account for about $30 after measuring everything we use so what could be using the other $125...
Heat pump?

Start reading your own meter and compare it to what's on the bill. There's sites that show you how with analog meters, or if digital just start writing down the numbers.
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Old 02-12-2009, 06:32 AM   #24
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


Wrangler Brett,

Sorry to hear about your injuries....suspect the speed of your recovery will be hampered with these continued power saving measures

Perhaps you should consider a programable solar powered robot.

Gotta sign off now and post a help wanted ad for my condo in the Panhandle
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Old 02-12-2009, 09:16 AM   #25
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


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Microwaves use more electricity just running the clock then you use heating stuff! (Hint the clock runs 24/7.)
I'm going to have to do some math to decide on the validity of that statement for my microwave.
I do admit that the electronics running the machine do take more power than an electric clock, but how much, I'll probably need to put a meter in-line with the unit to find out.

As for other ways to save, I have these arguments:
I am using CFL in most of my fixtures. CFL's are absolutely more energy efficient than incandescents. However, you must also consider the environmental issue associated with the tiny drop of mercury found in all CFL bulbs.
With everyone in the U.S. switching to them, we are going to have a real problem in the years to come.
There are supposed to be ways to dispose of these and other mercury containing products properly, but how many people do you really think will not just toss them into the trash when they burn out.
And do you really think that some government contracted company is going to dispose of the mercury tainted bulbs properly?
If you do, then you obviously do not live in New Jersey<g>

Using motion sensors will definitely save you money, if the sensor is set to 20 minutes minimum on time. CFL's are a lot more efficient if they are not cycled too often. 20 minutes seems to be the recommended minimum on/off cycle time.
But you must also consider the cost of replacing snap switches with expensive motion controls. You are going to eat up the savings very quickly.
When I did the math for my bathroom vanity lighting, which used to be incandescent, drawing a maximum of 340 watts, I realized that installing a $50 motion control was not going to save any money for the first 5 years.
I opted instead to replace the fixtures, and install CFL's. The fixtures cost about the same as the motion control would have, but I was able to install the CFL's into these fixtures, where I could not have in the old ones.

I have to agree with the "every penny counts" thinking. Little things do add up.
Using cold or cool water for laundry helps.
Turning down the thermost a degree or two, and setting back at night helps even more.
Insulating, and installing new windows.
Weatherstripping in the appropriate places.
Turning off appliances, including computers when not in use.

I used to participate in at least one argument per week on whether or not computers should be shut off when not in use. Some people believe that you are better (for the life of the computer) leaving them running 24/7, while others advocate shutting down if they're not being used within 1 hour.

I used to run a Windows 2000 server in my home, and left it running 24/7. Then I realized that it alone was costing me $10/mo to run, so I started shutting it down when I wasn't using it.
I no longer have the server running, and I shut my computer off when I'm not going to use it for an hour or more, unless it is scheduled for a backup, disk defrag, or other maintenance that is scheduled.

Best thing to do with the computer is enable and set suspend or hibernate mode to become active after 1hr of inactivity. Then you can walk away from your PC and know that it will shut down automatically if you don't return within the hour.

This is a hot topic. Maybe we should have a separate forum for it.

FW
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:02 AM   #26
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


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However, you must also consider the environmental issue associated with the tiny drop of mercury found in all CFL bulbs.
With everyone in the U.S. switching to them, we are going to have a real problem in the years to come.
I don't know if it's an embellishment but I've been told that more mercury will be put into the atmosphere from the additional coal burned to power an incandescent than is contained in a CFL. Obviously, it doesn't apply to those who have hydroelectric or nuclear but it's an interesting idea.

I switched over to nearly all CFLs a few years ago and have been very happy. The only downside I've noticed is that they tend to take a minute or two to get to full brightness when it's cold in the house. So far, they're all 3 or 4 years old and I haven't had to replace any yet.
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:14 AM   #27
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


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I have a wall switch for my microwave oven which is right next to it. I turn it off when not in use. Microwaves use more electricity just running the clock then you use heating stuff! (Hint the clock runs 24/7.)
Ummmmm....NO
Not unless you have a microwave running 8-11 100 watts bulbs to light that clock. Clocks are LED, mine uses 1w while off. Using my microwave at 70% power for 30 minutes a day it would take the clock ~385 hours to use the same power = 16 days

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Originally Posted by PirateKatz View Post
I don't know if it's an embellishment but I've been told that more mercury will be put into the atmosphere from the additional coal burned to power an incandescent than is contained in a CFL. Obviously, it doesn't apply to those who have hydroelectric or nuclear but it's an interesting idea.
That is correct, actually its quite a bit more
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:28 AM   #28
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


What brands of CFL are you guys using that get 3 or 4 years life out of them? I wouldn't hesitate to use them if they last.
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Old 02-12-2009, 10:29 AM   #29
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


I was unaware that burning coal produces mercury.
A lot of the power plants burn oil. But then, I am sure whatever you burn, it's going to pollute the air.
Problem is, we are saving by using CCFL bulbs but spending it for other electronics.
People have more power eating appliances today than we used to 25 years ago.
It's kind of a give-take situation. Appliances are a lot more energy efficient today than they were 25 years ago, but on the other hand, we all use more appliances today then we did back then (especially if you're younger than 40 or so<g>)

Another thing that I don't think has been touched on here:
Battery use.
We all love our cordless tools, phones, etc, but batteries all pollute the enviornment when they're used up and discarded. We love to say we're recycling them, but I've read a lot about corruption with companies that dispose of toxic waste.

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Old 02-12-2009, 10:38 AM   #30
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What do you guys do to save on your Electricity bill? (2009 Edition)


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What brands of CFL are you guys using that get 3 or 4 years life out of them? I wouldn't hesitate to use them if they last.
The brand that I use is NVision - home depot stocks them
If CFL bulbs are failing then there could be an electrical problem
In addition many of these have warranties, so bring them back

We switched to rechargeable AA & AAA batteries
I don't buy any cordless tools. We have 2 wired phones instead of cordless. Cordless just don't last that long

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