19 votes
Accepted

For electricity use, which is better: Turning all appliances on at the same time, or spread out?

The "surge" that the electric utility was referring to is the demand charge: The kWh charge (consumption) is the measurement of the amount of energy the building uses over the given period ...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 11.9k
11 votes
Accepted

How much power does an idle PC use?

The problem here is that there is really no such thing as an "average desktop". There are a lot of factors that influence this, and just "averaging them out" doesn't really work. Your university may ...
Martin Tournoij's user avatar
9 votes

Should I replace existing inefficient light bulbs?

Sort of. Consider the pay back time. high efficiency lights are expensive. Expense is, at least in part, a measure of the resources used to make it.* Replacing the fixtures in the kitchen where the ...
Sherwood Botsford's user avatar
7 votes

Electrical usage data logging with wireless data transfer

It sounds like the Kill A Watt wireless might be what you are after. For more alternatives keep reading. There is another product line called the Watts-Up that has USB connections to computers on ...
user2121874's user avatar
6 votes

For electricity use, which is better: Turning all appliances on at the same time, or spread out?

The primary issue being described is Peak Demand charge. The description in LShaver's answer explains a lot of that, but there are a few more pieces that I think are important: Why does peak demand ...
manassehkatz-Moving 2 Codidact's user avatar
6 votes

How much power does an idle PC use?

If you come across this answer and have measured your idle system's power consumption please extend the list by editing this answer or adding a comment. Power Consumption Measured by Users Power ...
5 votes

How much energy does it take to store 1 Terabyte of data in the cloud?

According to a 2016 blog post by Backblaze, a (particular) 1.5TB HDD uses 3.4W when idle and 5.9W when operating. This gives a lower bound of 20 kWh / TB / year and an upper bound of 35 kWh / TB / ...
Jean-Paul Calderone's user avatar
5 votes

Is it better to leave your computer on?

It undoubtedly uses more energy to leave a computer on than to turn it off. A PC will draw a few hundred Watts when on, compared to a few Watts powered down but plugged in. The biggest hardware ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 2,126
4 votes

Do USB outlets waste energy just like conventional wall warts?

If you are looking for an efficient USB outlet, this post refers to a USB wall outlet that shuts off when not plugged in.
Vinod's user avatar
  • 191
4 votes
Accepted

What is marginal energy?

What is marginal energy, or fuel on the margin? Fuel on the margin, when talking about the electric grid, refers to which fuel will be used to generate the next additional kilowatt of power that is ...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 11.9k
4 votes

For electricity use, which is better: Turning all appliances on at the same time, or spread out?

The company was having problems with demand pricing as discussed in other answers. That's not a problem for residences (usually). At a "micro" level on the grid, it doesn't matter. You ...
Harper - Reinstate Monica's user avatar
4 votes

How to reduce energy usage of refrigerator while away?

Some models have a holiday mode which can be used with care. On a fridge-freezer it often stops cooling the fridge compartment (AEG) or at least stops cooling it enough to keep food fresh. Check the ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 2,126
3 votes

How can I figure out what's using so much electricity in my home?

For the daily energy consumption quoted, optimizing the lights will not make a significant dent. I know because I've been there. Keep in mind that large loads (electric stove, electric drier, heaters, ...
Radu Popa's user avatar
3 votes

Are crypto currencies sustainable?

The cryptos that require large/increasing/exponential amount of processing power/electricity to function are not sustainable according to the (resource-related) meaning of the word. If, however, we ...
Tim's user avatar
  • 2,824
3 votes

Is an incrementalist approach to decarbonisation feasible?

This Zero Carbon Britain report gives a detailed answer to your question. Their plan sees emissions being reduced to 8% of the current levels, and the rest being balanced by carbon capture. This ...
M Juckes's user avatar
  • 1,021
3 votes

Best strategy for turning off computer/laptop monitors to save energy but not reduce lifespan?

Modern monitors use LED backlights. LEDs are not damaged by being turned on or off. In short; I can't see any reason why this would do anything to the lifetime of the monitor, and it has never been a ...
vidarlo's user avatar
  • 176
2 votes

Do USB outlets waste energy just like conventional wall warts?

I was looking for similar information and came across this article: "Tested: Should You Unplug Chargers When You’re Not Using Them?". Seems that, while some of the wall warts may draw more power, ...
Paul's user avatar
  • 21
2 votes

How many grams of CO2 are emitted to produce one paper napkin?

I found a few different references for this: 10 g CO2e per paper towel (from the Guardian, 2010) 10 g CO2 per paper napkin (from Treehugger, 2009) 7.3 g CO2e per virgin paper towel (from MIT/Dyson ...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 11.9k
2 votes
Accepted

Is an incrementalist approach to decarbonisation feasible?

tldr: yes, with sufficient political will, an incremental approach is sufficient - we could decarbonise our energy consumption in 20 years. There are still a lot of unknowns (like just what we do ...
410 gone's user avatar
  • 14.7k
2 votes

Measure and compare energy consumption

tldr: Look at power rating of different appliances (show in W or kW typically), or most simply try to buy Energy Star appliances. The first thing that you should know is that if you are trying to be ...
Random Engineer's user avatar
2 votes

How to use solar power with grid backup without net metering

On the Enmax website they have a page that shows how to read your meter. There is a link there "How to find your electric meter number" This overlays a picture of the electricity meter Is ...
Solar Meitheal's user avatar
2 votes

Why would the smallness of Alaska's population be a factor in its per-capita energy consumption ranking?

Energy consumption for transport The problem actually is not the small population, but the population density. This is an increasingly specialised society. Small settlements that contain the entire ...
FluidCode's user avatar
  • 151
1 vote

How to use solar power with grid backup without net metering

From Wikipedia: This exported energy may be accounted for in the simplest case by the meter running backwards during periods of net export, thus reducing the customer's recorded energy usage by the ...
juhist's user avatar
  • 4,954
1 vote

What's the difference between a synthetics mode and a cotton mode of a washing machine?

Mine lacks any override controls for temperature and spin speed, so I have a range of preset temperatures for cottons, a slightly different range for synthetics, and a few other presets (delicates ×2, ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 2,126
1 vote

For electricity use, which is better: Turning all appliances on at the same time, or spread out?

Theoretically, if the charge is big enough for the electrical wiring the heat can also be a concern. When everything turns on together a high current can make the cables hot and that increases its ...
bigubr's user avatar
  • 11
1 vote

How to prepare my home for vacation to reduce energy use?

The biggest thing by far is turning off/down heating and air conditioning. Note that in some climates/jurisdictions, your insurance may not pay out for damage from any cause (not just frozen pipes) if ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 2,126
1 vote

How to prepare my home for vacation to reduce energy use?

If the heating is turned off in wintertime, the water-heater might be enough to keep the water pipes from freezing. Otherwise, the water can be turned off, the pipes drained with open faucets, and ...
S Spring's user avatar
  • 302
1 vote

How can I figure out what's using so much electricity in my home?

About the graph showing the changes along the week, I suggest you to take a list of the domestic appliances that consumes more eletricity (like this ), to sort them by energy consumption rate, and to ...
Tms91's user avatar
  • 186
1 vote

How much energy does it take to store 1 Terabyte of data in the cloud?

The open-source project Cloud Carbon Footprint estimated the carbon footprint of storing 1TB in the Cloud. In their methodology they explain that they use the following numbers: HDD average capacity ...
THelper's user avatar
  • 14.5k
1 vote
Accepted

How much electric energy would a studio apartment use per month if everything inside is powered by electricity (heater, water, stove, etc.)

I went down a few rabbit holes to figure this one out -- ultimately the search that got me going the right direction was "estimate savings on heating bills from adding insulation". The first few ...
LShaver's user avatar
  • 11.9k

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