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Old 03-30-2007, 10:18 AM   #1
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Tanks to blame for high energy cost?

well the last few months our electricity bill (wich also includes natural gas for heat and hot water) has gone up signficantly. i know it was just winter, so i expect it to be more in winter. but it is ridiculously high IMO. called power company and they swear the bill is right

long story short my wife is blaming it on the fish tanks

i am currently running 2 ten gallons w/ ~2.5 wpg of T8 or pc lighting, and appropriate sized heater.

1 26 gallon, with 15 watt T8 bulb and appropriate sized heater

1 75 gallon with one 32 watt T8 bulb and appropriated heater

all these tanks have HOB filters that are appropriate for there size.

and 1 75 gallon with 4* 32 watt T8, appropriate sized heater, Eheim 2215 filter and 2 powerheads.

is this enough to make make a significant dent in my power bill?
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Old 03-30-2007, 10:40 AM   #2
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Electric rates went up significantly at the start of the year for most areas of the country. Compare on your bills how much you're paying per kWh, and how many kWh's you're using, compared to November or December.
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Old 03-30-2007, 10:42 AM   #3
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Try running your lights on all your tanks 1 hour less and see what the difference is...
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Old 03-30-2007, 10:56 AM   #4
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ok last summer bill was ~$30

current bill ~$300

we just bought the house last summer so my frame of reference for power bills is limited but that seams extreme
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Old 03-30-2007, 11:05 AM   #5
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While electric rates may have gone up, I think the cost of natural gas is probably more to blame.
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Old 03-30-2007, 11:28 AM   #6
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As David mentioned without comparing the kilowatt rates and the hour usage knowing the actual amount is useless (especially comparing summer to winter totals). Compare hours from last month to this month for a more accurate comparison since you don't have last years bill to compare hour usage.

If your kilowatt hours are the same but the rate jumped .10 then it could easy explain the increase if same hours were used month to month.

I saw a $50 jump from last month but kilowatt hours were within 5% as last month and it was attributed to the increase in kilowatt hours.

You listed 231W of lighting alone not counting all the heaters/pumps so IMO your wife is right :P

Also most power companies don't actually read the meter for months and use estimates to bill you between the actual reads. It could be they actually came out to read it this time and the usage was greater than they estimated which could also be the reason for the increase.
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Old 03-30-2007, 11:29 AM   #7
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i agree wth dave, the only way to eliminate electrical usage as the issue is to compare kilowatt hours from month to month, and also the price they charge per kilowatt hour. once you have that info, then you look at natural gas usage and the price differance month to month.

look at that neilan... i agreed with dave!! imagine that!
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Old 03-30-2007, 12:09 PM   #8
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It's the lighting more than anything else. I added 330W to my 125g and the electric bill went out of sight.
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Old 03-30-2007, 12:27 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianNY
It's the lighting more than anything else. I added 330W to my 125g and the electric bill went out of sight.
well i will compare a summer bill with current bill when i get home tonight to see how much of it is gas.

i might have to sell off some tanks though
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Old 03-30-2007, 12:45 PM   #10
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Check your breakers before selling the tanks. I saw a HUGE spike last year on my bill in March which made NO sense whatsoever, and it turned out that my water heater was constantly running and heating water causing a huge drain. Seems the thermostat on it might have gone haywire. Anyway, I just turn the breaker off to it when I don't need hot water and that solved it.

When I discussed this problem with the electric company, the guys that came out to test my meter told me that fish tanks don't really use that much electricity. It's mostly the large things like central heat/air units, washer/dryer, water heater, stove/oven, that cause problems.

Go out and notice how fast the disc is turning on your meter and flip breakers until it slows dow or stops....then start turning on breakers on by one, you might can isolate which it is and go from there. For me, it was the water heater.
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