Elementary Sleuthing

Elementary Sleuthing

My blog on reducing electric use was a top seller.  I am wildly confident this updated epistle will be too.  My readership in Romania has never been higher.  I’m shooting for six views here folks. 

Buying the efergy elink2 was an excellent move.  It is an easy install monitor that sits on your end table or pins to your wall and tells you your daily average of electric use or use RIGHT NOW and more in kWh or dollars.

Downloading the information to your computer via USB cable gives you even more ways to slice and dice information.  You get bar charts and graphs and know exactly how much juice your house ate at three AM when “NOTHING WAS ON”.  Prepare to be shocked.

It can be a dangerous device because you are suddenly aware of the light left on or what your laptop costs a day to charge.  Try not to nag your housemates. 

My first blog informed of an issue with Mac friendliness.  I got a response from the President of efergy America and their software is downloadable now in a Mac friendly way from their web site and how responsive is that?  We have all heard “it will pay for itself the first year”.  In this case that would be true. 

The first month I  watched.   I thought at 75¢ a day I was the poster child for low American electric use.  The monitor has allowed me to cut that by 20%.  The first month I did even better but convenience has value too. 

SOME AMATEUR DETECTIVE WORK WILL BE REQUIRED.  You will need to isolate things to get a  handle on usage.  It was costing 7¢ a day to keep the TV plugged in WHEN IT WAS OFF.  Was it worth 25.55 a year to not watch TV?    Its on a power strip now.  About ⅓ of my usage is the refrigerator.  Considering ice cream in the desert is impossible without one, I can live with .21¢ a day.

If you think a penny a day is insignificant or 5¢ or a dime doesn’t matter and you are looking for that one thing to unplug that will cut your bill in half…   pay the damn bill and shut up. 

If you have the patience to shave pennies here and there and understand they add up… If I can save 20% on my electric you could AT LEAST match that.

Paying too much for a gallon of gas?  Cut your electric use by 40%.

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12 Responses to Elementary Sleuthing

  1. Mac in CT says:

    Readership in Romania may be at an all time high, but it remains constant here in what may be the most expensive state where the Five and Dime was replaced by the misnamed Dollar Store, there are precious few items offered for a hundred pennies.

  2. Cary says:

    no wonder so many people LOVE you Lynden!!! you are the quintessential GREAT MAN, giving out sage advice to make this world a better place!!!! Love you BUNCHES, I DO!!!!!

    • osolynden says:

      More like sage BRUSH advice. I’m just having fun seeing exactly how much this or that costs and in places where that use does not serve me, eliminating it. Looks like my neighbors spend a quarter an hour while they sleep. (they got an efergy too)

  3. max says:

    I’ve got to admit that I don’t really think that much since I’ve been back in the big smoke. I run a gig screen tv with cable, a pc and a fridge. I think I’m somewhere around $350 a quarter, nothing to really freak out about. Nice to see you at it again though mate ❤

    • osolynden says:

      A quarter? American utility companies want their money every month…. 😉
      The exchange rate is so close your 350 would be 363 here. So your electric would be around 121 a month which most would think very inexpensive. Of course living like a monk my bill is around 1/5 of that. I wonder what you pay per kWh? We now pay .13 a kWh.

  4. Some People's Kids says:

    It sounds like you may have developed a definite case of electrification nervosa. Which isn’t a bad thing for anyone but the Power Company or your landlords, as the case may be.

    • osolynden says:

      I tend to go whole hog no matter what the task or hobby… It’s good I live alone as I would probably nag about leaving the refrigerator door open too long. 😉
      Wait till this summer when i become an overnight bird identification know it all…

  5. osolikeyou says:

    I love my big fridge and don’t always remember to turn off the power strip to the
    computer/printer but I did get rid of the garage fridge and now charge my phone in the
    car during the commute. You always lift my spirit and nudge my atrophied moral outrage.
    Waiting for the long overdue Photovoltaic shingle. No roof would be complete without them.
    Love you lots.

    • osolynden says:

      I dearly love modern conveniences and as I age even more so. I cannot imagine pounding laundry on a rock on the river bank mostly because we don’t have a real river…. 😉

      Look into “smart power strips”. Turning off the main device shuts down the whole strip and all of its associated toys.

      Love you too. Little Bear sends his greetings or will wish he had when he gets over the outrage of his recent spring bath….

  6. Lady_Hart says:

    Since you wrote your first blog on this subject, I have been more mindful of what I leave on all the time. I know I could use a lot more improvement though. Didn’t you say one of those thingies cost around $55.00??

    • osolynden says:

      They were $120.00 when i bought mine. Here is the source:

      I think for most of us knowing exactly what this or that costs to run is plenty of encouragement to cut back. My laptop charger used .003 cents a day to keep plugged in when NOT IN USE. Most wouldn’t bother with such a small fraction of a penny.

      My biggest surprise was how much my “low use” LED Christmas lights used. I use the torchiere now for general lighting. I prefer it anyway. That one change alone will pay for the unit very quickly.

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