Sunday, August 15, 2010

Monitoring Electricity Consumption - Individual appliance and whole house monitors

I spent several hours today looking at options for monitoring electricity consumption with an eye to reduce usage and save money. Here is the best information I found:

Whole house monitors:
TED 5000 (TED stands for "The energy detective)
This is the model that is compatible with Google PowerMeter. Starts at $200.

This device is sold in the US by Power Save. US version with two CT clamps and bundled with the web bridge sells for $169. This is also compatible with Google PowerMeter.

I found this TED-5000 vs. Current Cost Envi comparison review to be quite helpful.

I am currently leaning toward purchasing the Envi as it is easier to install and costs less.

I briefly looked at the Black and Decker Power Monitor but crossed it off the list since it was not compatible with Google Power Meter and also according to some reviews doesn't measure small watt increases.

Single Appliance Monitor
There are a number of products on the market that a measure the electricity usage of a single appliance. The Kill-A-Watt EZ by P3 International is the front runner. (Note: The EZ model is an improvement upon the Kill-A-Watt. Reviewers strongly recommend getting this newer version). had the best price on the unit. I ordered it for $30 with free shipping.

Another link worth mentioning is Mr. Electricity's page with his four part answer to the question "How do I measure the amount of electricity something uses?" At the end he gives a detailed explanation of how to measure electric usage using your existing meter instead of using on of this consumer products.

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