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Old 03-14-2012, 12:25 AM   #1
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Not sure I can afford my T5-HO lighting...

Ever since setting up my 55g, I've seen a hefty increase in my electricity bills. It's gotten to a point where I am actually getting aggravated at how much I am paying monthly. When I first set my tank up in June, I was using a 2x54W T5-HO, running at 8.5hrs daily. My brother and I both worked on Long Island during the summer, so we were rarely here (I only came back once or twice a week to check on the tank/do water changes). It wasn't ideal, but it was what it was. From June-August, we were running anywhere from $70-$75 in electricity per month (no AC, no lights on ever in the apartment, nobody watching TV, no computers charging, no gas usage), so really the only thing contributing to the bill was my aquarium, various plugged in appliances and general charges. This bill was very manageable.

Fast forward to September-now, and our electric bills are just too much and it's making us sweat a little. I do my best around here to turn off all lights when I'm not around, or not in a room...turn off TV, don't leave my computer plugged in unnecessarily, etc. My brother, on the other hand, is not as responsible. So, total all this in to running my aquarium, and we are seeing anywhere from $90-$110. My bill this month is $108...it's a lot, since we are both college students and have been out of work since January. Sadly, I think the main contributor is definitely the light on my tank running 9 hours a day (1x54W HagenGlo T5-HO). Since swapping from a dual T5 to a single, I didn't notice any change in my electricity usage. Anyway, my point is that I am starting to "worry", I guess, about how much electricity my tank is using. I like to think the aquarium isn't as much at fault, but I'm pretty sure it is...I didn't care as much when I was working, and didn't quite think twice of it.

Has anyone else experienced a large increase in electricity charges when using this lighting? What did you decide to do with it? I am aware that LED fixtures use far less energy; anyone have any specifics? If it is a money saving route in terms of monthly costs, I may have to go that route. Any advice on the matter is appreciated.

Thanks for reading and letting me "vent".

**Just read some posts on here about electricity, and it seems like people don't see THAT much of an increase when using aquariums. It's just that when I look on my bill compared to last year's usage at this time (only had a 10g running), the difference is about 4kWh average daily (last year in March we averaged 4.3kWh and this time we averaged about 7.9kWh). Can my aquarium really be causing that much of a difference? Seems a bit nuts....
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:34 AM   #2
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Unless you pay a ton of money for electricity, I highly doubt it's your single T5 lamp. I've got an 8 bulb 48" fixture running at a total of 432w for 8 hours a day. It's costing me about $35 to run every month. What's your price for a kWh? Seems very odd.
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:38 AM   #3
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Right now I am getting charged 12.1190cents per kWh. Is that a lot? I'm on the ConEd site now and looking at alternative energy providers to see if I can compare rates. A while ago I signed with Oasis Energy...am I getting ripped off?
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:45 AM   #4
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I mean, I'm looking now at other suppliers and it seems like I am getting ripped off. I'm looking at one now that is ~9cents per kWh, and have no monthly customer charge. My current supplier charges $5.76 a month! *Edit: Yeah. Screw this. I'm switching to another supplier...found one for 8.9c per hour.
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Old 03-14-2012, 01:10 AM   #5
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12cents seems like a lot. That's nice you have more than one provider in NY. Always used to having only one in CA. You're stuck with what you have here.
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:17 AM   #6
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Yeah that is a bit more then we are paying upstate ill look at a bill later and see what it is. Lucky you can change provider we have one around here.
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Old 03-14-2012, 02:23 PM   #7
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I also put my tanks on timers. 4 hours on/4 off/4 on so I see my fish in the evening.
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