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Anyone else have a ridiculous electric bill?

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Firenutz, Nov 11, 2009.

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  1. Firenutz

    Firenutz New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2008
    Messages:
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    Loc:
    Northeastern PA
    I just got my bill for October/November and it's only $20 shy of what it was in the summer with 2 window air conditioners running 24/7. I looked at the kilowatt usage graph for the last year and the months after I installed my pellet stove (Jan.,Feb.) were higher than any summer months. So far it really only comes on at night. I'm really starting to wonder if this thing was a wise investment.

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  2. woodsman23

    woodsman23 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2008
    Messages:
    1,352
    Loc:
    western southern tier of NYS
    THERE is simply NO WAY your pellet stove is using more power than an air conditioner just no way. You have a neighbor with a extension card running on your place somewhere. At startup (ignition on) maybe 400-500 watts then down to maybe 100 watts even 150 maybe.. I'd be checking around for another culprit.
  3. jtp10181

    jtp10181 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2007
    Messages:
    3,724
    Loc:
    Madison, WI
    Mine is always insane... 2 computers that always run, and my wife never turns the TV off either. Plus she is on her laptop all the time also.

    I should get a network hard drive so I could turn at least one of the computers off... might pay for itself in a few months with saved power.

    Get a kill-a-watt and see how much it really costs you. If I was in the shop more I would take mine in and test it for you. but I am not there enough.
  4. krooser

    krooser Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2008
    Messages:
    2,420
    Loc:
    Waupaca, WI
    In another recent post one member figured the stove cost less than $3.00 per month to operate...
  5. tjnamtiw

    tjnamtiw Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    Messages:
    3,787
    Loc:
    North Georgia
    I used my pellet stove last month of electric usage in the evening and morning when it was in the 40's and low 50's and my bill was $80 less than last year at same period and usage went down by the same percentage. I used 7 bags of pellets.
    Like jtp said, get a kill-a-watt (the more expensive one that allows you to put the electric rate in) and plug various things into it. Maybe your igniter is staying on full time. Does your hot water seem hotter than normal? Maybe one of the heaters is stuck on full time. Did you have company that used the clothes dryer a lot more?
  6. chrisasst

    chrisasst Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,178
    Loc:
    cortland ny
    DVR's... I heard that DVR's use alot of energy because it is always on. Did you get one of those?
  7. tjnamtiw

    tjnamtiw Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    Messages:
    3,787
    Loc:
    North Georgia
    As we speak, I have my kill-a-watt on my DVR and 65" Mitsubishi DLP TV and it's running at 285 watts. If I kick in the PS3 it goes to 530 watts. I was checking to see what size line conditioner I can buy. It looks like a 600 watt one will do the job but I may opt for the 1200 watt one just in case.
  8. schmeg

    schmeg Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    Messages:
    161
    Loc:
    Central Maine
    Doesn't take much for usage here in Maine to get a high bill. We pay 20 cents a kilowatt hour. All the special interest groups have made the competition
    go away. " Maine, The Way Life Should Be", if you can afford it.
  9. BJN644

    BJN644 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Messages:
    352
    Loc:
    Maine
    But yet we welcome all these new wind power projects, send the power out of state and don't get a dam thing for it other than a bunch of hacked up mountain ranges. Makes you wonder who's running this state.

    Sorry for the off topic rant.
  10. mnkywrnch

    mnkywrnch Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2008
    Messages:
    560
    Loc:
    Baldwinville ma
    Where I live we have a municipal light co. my highest bills are in the summer with 3 window a/c's running and that bill is never more than $110 in the winter with the stove going my bill is normally around $70 to $75 a month.
  11. teddy1971

    teddy1971 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    Messages:
    173
    Loc:
    Orange County NY
    I have a Kill-a-Watt Unit and was surprised to see that the DVR's use 45 watts each and must remain on to record shows. This is the reason why we installed Solar Panel this past spring. It made a huge difference in my electric bill. My Bill for Aug 08 was $450.00 my bill for Aug 09 (Post Solar Panels) was $120.00.
  12. gutterboy2ca

    gutterboy2ca Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    Messages:
    177
    Loc:
    Hartland ,New Brunswick,Canada
    Our house was heated entirely with Electric heaters and ran approx $140/month in summer, up to $385 Winter months.Now with Pellet stove running only heat source for entire house,its $75 plus tax/month for electric,and we're using 5 pallets(pellets) per winter.We only saved approx $400 last winter, but i was glad to give the money to the Building centers as opposed to NB-Power.
  13. HEMI

    HEMI Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Messages:
    465
    Loc:
    connecticut
    Give DIRECT ENERGY a call and see if they service your area.....you still use and pay your existing electric company, but you get their rate...saves me 40-50/month
  14. chrisasst

    chrisasst Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,178
    Loc:
    cortland ny
    How much did it cost for the solar panel system. I really want to do this but no clue where to start.
  15. CarbonNeutral

    CarbonNeutral Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2009
    Messages:
    1,132
    Loc:
    Nashoba Valley(ish), MA
    What was costing you so much? Even with central AC, that's a massive bill.
  16. anka

    anka New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2009
    Messages:
    50
    Oil furnace/blowers also consume a lot of electricity- I think our main culprit are computers and clothes dryer... today we are turning off the phone and switching to cell only- not looking for a big savings but great to get unlisted...
  17. Shortstuff

    Shortstuff Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2008
    Messages:
    461
    Loc:
    Southeastern MA
    - If your computer(s) do not need to be on at night, shut them down and the same goes for printers, speakers or anything else that uses ANY electicity when not in use.

    - Change every light bulb in your house to the new CFL's (Compact Flourecent Lights), the ones that are shaped like curly-fries. Believe me when I tell you they make a HUGE difference, a 40 watt bulb only uses 9 watts of electricity, 60 uses 14, etc.

    - Be concious of what you leave on when it is not needed to include lights, fans, chargers, appliances of any kind.

    - And if you haven't looked into solar power, you'll be amazed at what you can do to really say good-bye to the power/money hungry utility companies.

    Happy Heating!

    Steve
  18. Doocrew

    Doocrew Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2008
    Messages:
    314
    Loc:
    Southern NH
    The woodsman is right. It is not the pellet stove. My bill went down almost $20 last winter using the pellet stove instead of the oil burner. On top of running the pellet stove, I was also running two fans to move the air around the house. This does not even factor in the rising cost of electricity.
  19. magsf11

    magsf11 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2009
    Messages:
    346
    Loc:
    buffalo ny
    my bill is around 75-90 per month in the winter. if i could get my stepson to turn things off at night(tv, pc, his bedroom light) would be lower. last yr went from a elt. dry to gas and saw a big drop in cost. the stove and 2 fans sip elt.
  20. teddy1971

    teddy1971 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    Messages:
    173
    Loc:
    Orange County NY
    The breakdown is as follows:

    $38500 Gross Total Cost of System (5 Kw System)
    -$19500 NYS Rebate paid directly to installer
    -$5700 Federal Tax Credit
    -$4750 NYS Tax Credit
    $9050 - Net Total Cost of System

    Plus the appraised value of my house increased by $20000 which means I received $11000 of equity in my house for free. It would be great if everyone was able to get solar. The incentives are just too good to pass up. NYS is running out of incentive money quickly.
  21. mark d fellows

    mark d fellows New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2009
    Messages:
    374
    Loc:
    Westmisnter, MD
    My electric bill went way down after I installed the pellet stove. Yeah, there is just no way a pellet stove should use more electricity or as much as an air conditioner.

    Mark :)
  22. teddy1971

    teddy1971 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    Messages:
    173
    Loc:
    Orange County NY
    The bill from Aug 08 was when utility rates were sky high (during the oil squeeze of summer 08). My bill is normally around $300 in the summer and $200 in the winter. Yes, we do have central air but we also have multiple TV's and computers in the house. My bill went down 20% even before I installed the Panels when I purchase power strips and turned them off when the devices they were attached to weren't in use. You'd be surprised how much electricity is being used by "Phantom" usage or standby usage. By making some minor changes in how we use electricity and taking advantage of the TOU (Time-of-Use) program that my utility company offers (http://www.oru.com/programsandservices/incentivesandrebates/timeofuse.html) the savings have been great.
  23. vgrund

    vgrund Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2005
    Messages:
    375
    Loc:
    Amherst, NH
    @Teddy1971 You have to clear your panels of snow in the winter, right?
  24. teddy1971

    teddy1971 Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    Messages:
    173
    Loc:
    Orange County NY
    This will be my first winter. But when it snowed a couple of weeks ago the snow covered the panels but melted within a couple of hours of daylight.
  25. imacman

    imacman Guest

    I have a 2700 sq. ft home, w/ all the usual things.

    Last Feb., with the pellet stove running 24/7 with (2) 24 yr. old ceiling fans running & 14" floor fan, CFL bulbs in every light I can use them in, occasional HHO boiler running, (2) TV's, (2) VCR's, (2) computers on power strips that get shut off every night, electric kitchen stove, dishwasher, 6 outdoor floodlights, 10 yr old frig, etc, etc, etc, my monthly bill from Central Hudson was $130.
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