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Electric bill....keeps rising...

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussion' started by VA10, Sep 13, 2016.

  1. Sep 13, 2016 at 7:21 AM
    #1
    VA10

    VA10 [OP] New Member

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    Good morning,

    Our power bill keeps going as of three months ago. I cannot pinpoint why.

    Items we consistently use.

    SONOS - calculated the idle power consumption and in use power consumption (not as signifgant as I thought.) - i do not think this is the issue.
    2 play 3s
    1 play bar
    1 sub

    Large Fridge

    Small beer Fridge

    Kegerator

    3 flat screen TVs (no more than 2 on at a time)

    Xbox ones (on for a min of 3 hrs mon-frid)

    A/C unit - we rarely set it to cool if the outside temp is over 92 degree F.

    Ceilling fans - 2 are on very often - through out the night all the time.

    I am honestly racking my brain here. Because at first there was a trend with the SONOS speakers but after doing the calculations the bills are way higher than the SONOS could cost to idle all the time/use. Anything I could be missing?

    the bill has jumped over $100 a month.
     
  2. Sep 13, 2016 at 7:33 AM
    #2
    RowdyRon

    RowdyRon Not too old to play

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    Turn everything off except the Kegerator! LOL
     
  3. Sep 13, 2016 at 7:36 AM
    #3
    Law323

    Law323 Pray for peace, prepare for war

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    Are your fridge doors closing all the time?? Could even be a worn weatherstrip, maybe you guys forget to turn off a DVD player or something without realizing it, something small like that?
     
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  4. Sep 13, 2016 at 8:03 AM
    #4
    Netmonkey

    Netmonkey New Member

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    only $100 a month? i wish :)
     
  5. Sep 13, 2016 at 8:21 AM
    #5
    Sean266

    Sean266 #ThinBlueLine Staff Member

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    Do your rates increase over the summer?
     
  6. Sep 13, 2016 at 8:27 AM
    #6
    GoHuskers

    GoHuskers New Member

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    $100/month is not bad..I average $150/month (no gas, just electric)....little higher on cold winter months and little lower for Apr-Jun and Sep-Oct...since they are cooler months. My electric rates are higher in summer months.
     
  7. Sep 13, 2016 at 8:28 AM
    #7
    Backslider

    Backslider New Member

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    Problem solved!

    Seriously though, is it possible someone is stealing your service? Do you have access to the meter and fuse panel? You could troubleshoot by switching off all of the fuses but the main disconnect, and then enabling them one at a time and then watching the meter. If you identify a circuit that spins the meter very quickly you can at least isolate which circuit is the culprit and go from there.
     
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  8. Sep 13, 2016 at 8:28 AM
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    Backslider

    Backslider New Member

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    I'm pretty sure he was saying his bill has gone up by $100 recently - not that $100 is his total bill.
     
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  9. Sep 13, 2016 at 8:30 AM
    #9
    GoHuskers

    GoHuskers New Member

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    ...then he has bigger problems....turn off everything except your beer fridge.
     
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  10. Sep 13, 2016 at 8:51 AM
    #10
    mdavis

    mdavis Tiger Life

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    What size of house? I live in an apartment right now (1200 square feet) while my house is being built and my power bill hovers right around $100.
     
  11. Sep 13, 2016 at 9:13 AM
    #11
    ColoradoTJ

    ColoradoTJ I'm a boob guy.

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    In VA, starting in July 2016, you had a reduction in rates. Not the cheapest rates in the lower 48, but certainly not the worst. Jumping up 100.00 is a pretty significant cost at 7.01 cents per kWh. (I am at 4.45 cents per kWh)

    I would look at all your higher voltage items in the house:

    Dryer-sometimes a coil goes out and takes 3x longer to dry a load and on 110V is very inefficient to say the least.
    Range- do you have gas or electric?
    AC- you could have a compressor going south and drawing more amps
    Refrigerators- Same issue as AC

    Next I would have the meter checked by the utility company. My wife ran a meter shop for years and they do fail. Meter swaps are easy for the company to do for insured performance to the customer.
     
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  12. Sep 13, 2016 at 10:29 AM
    #12
    Randy Morton

    Randy Morton New Member

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    I'd suspect the AC unit first. Clean the compressor coils, change the filter, and check the inside coils for accumulated crud. Put a thermometer in the output vent farthest from the unit. That will tell you if the unit is cooling correctly. The house may stay cool, but it will take a while to get there, and a lot of running to stay there, if your AC needs service. For the inside appliances, get a Kill-A-Watt device and see what they're using. Clean out the dryer vent hose, that will create back pressure and take longer to dry clothes. Last, turn off all political speeches on the radio and TV. That much hot air has to have a negative effect on cooling the house in the summer.
     
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  13. Sep 13, 2016 at 12:45 PM
    #13
    WarEagleSteve

    WarEagleSteve Getting out of Jersey!

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    Are your bills actual or estimates? I have had issues before whee I have seen jumps that made no sense, the bill was estimated. Then the next month next to nothing because they did an actual reading.

    After many complaints the power company now sends someone each month to read the meters.

    We can be as low as $62 a month in the winter to as high as $150, that being one of the highest ever.
     
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  14. Sep 13, 2016 at 12:49 PM
    #14
    VA10

    VA10 [OP] New Member

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    Ok - I will try my best to answer all of your questions.

    1. I live in a 3 bedroom apartment which overhangs above my garage.

    2. stove/range/oven is gas. Including our fireplace

    3. Our A/C is clearly not top of the line equipment. In fact the only portion of the HVAC system I have access to is the filters and thermostat. We change the filters approx every 30 days. I use to work in the HVAC industry and know not to set the thermostat to high temp when its very hot out or turn it off all together during the hotter points of the day. We already ran some experiments regarding the HVAC.....none relieved significant impacts on the electric bill.

    4. We do tend to dry our clothes using a "low heat" setting on the older style dryer which makes for multiple cycles before clothes are dry. (trying to prevent clothing from shrinking).

    5. one mini fridge in the garage stays plugged in 24/7 - So i am think maybe be t-stat is exposed to the warmer temps 24/7 is causing it run all the time. this also goes for the kegorator.

    and to clarify my bill has increased a tad of $100.


    THANK YOU FOR ALL THE INPUT AND ADVICE!
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2016
  15. Sep 13, 2016 at 12:50 PM
    #15
    VA10

    VA10 [OP] New Member

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    Ahhh good point. I will have to check w/ my girl friend. most of the bills are emailed to her directly........
     
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  16. Sep 13, 2016 at 12:57 PM
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    WarEagleSteve

    WarEagleSteve Getting out of Jersey!

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    At most, our bills were $50-$60 over estimated but I know people who have had over estimates of near $ 120 in a month.
     
  17. Sep 13, 2016 at 1:54 PM
    #17
    ColoradoTJ

    ColoradoTJ I'm a boob guy.

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    Only other question I would have is how your electric is metered? Do you share with others and then devided up?
     
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  18. Sep 13, 2016 at 3:32 PM
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    Ryan Mc.

    Ryan Mc. New Member

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    Buy Solar...ours is $300-$350 annual payment. We OWN it...only way to do it. Do not lease.

    Our home came with solar already installed (4 panels) we upgraded and added 2 more. Forgot to mention we bought a new home.

    Sunpower is the manufacturer.
     
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  19. Sep 13, 2016 at 3:37 PM
    #19
    WarEagleSteve

    WarEagleSteve Getting out of Jersey!

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    When we move to Alabama that is what we plan on doing.
     
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  20. Sep 13, 2016 at 3:43 PM
    #20
    Ryan Mc.

    Ryan Mc. New Member

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    Word to the wise...I live in SoCal, electric company is SoCal Edison. We received a notification in the snail mail a few months back basically stating that if a house generates TOO much electricity compared to the amount they are using that house will automatically be billed a minimum of $10.

    EX: A family of 8 buy 20 panels, which at the times makes sense for them. They pick up their S*** and get out of dodge. A family of 2 buys the house. The electricity usage drastically decreases compared to what the panels generate. That family of 2 get a bill of $10 per month just for S***s and Gigs.
     
  21. Sep 13, 2016 at 3:45 PM
    #21
    WarEagleSteve

    WarEagleSteve Getting out of Jersey!

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    Don't that beat all.

    We are going to get a pool hence why going to solar. I also figured with the heat and humidity the A/C or dehumidifier will be running...

    Thanks for the heads up Ryan.
     
  22. Sep 13, 2016 at 4:07 PM
    #22
    driverdog

    driverdog New Member

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    I agree with everyone and would suspect one of the larger items covered as a culprit.

    - Hot water heater gas or electric?
    - Do you guys use an iron? They use a boatload of electric as do some hair driers and toaster ovens.
    - Any old school flood lights?

    Also don't forget electric vampires. Some newer tv's and other smart appliances are waiting for a command...they may look off but they are dormant...still using power. Not much but multiplied they add up.
     
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