Hmm, I never thought about the garage door opener. I don't think it would work well for us to leave it unplugged, but now I'm wondering how much it really draws just sitting there waiting for something to happen.
Holy crap!!! You were using 22kw/h a day!?!?! I wouldn't expect that much usage from someone on this site. I currently use about 8 kw/h per day, give or take depending on the season. I could cut it back even more, but I live with two women, and we all know how that is!! haha....
It is really easy to cut back on electricity usage if you actually care. MetroMPG hit the nail on the head -- unplug the crap that you aren't using. In this age of "energy star" ratings and what not, people get lulled into a sense of security in that their appliances aren't draining electricity. Well, that is not the case at all. If it is plugged into the wall, it is sucking juice. You need to either unplug all of the crap, or get a switch to turn on/off the flow of electricity from the socket.
Congrats too on your reduction! Going from 22 to 8 is pretty damned impressive!!! Now I just need to work on the ladies...
I also pay about 20 cents over here in japan for my kilowatt hours... so I would be saving much more than the average person when I cut back.
MetroMPG: You actually inspired me to go to town as well. haha... I ended up watching our meter spin, and it was going so slow that I got tired of watching it!!! I logged us as using about 200 watt hours... per, well, hour!! That is without any lights or anything on. In other words, just what our refrigerator, and lan hookups are using. I am not happy with this number at all though. I did some calculations, and have figured out that we are losing at least 100 watts per hour to things being plugged in, but not being used. Since I don't have a kill-a-watt available over here in Japan, I just decided to unplug everything. Yep, no more anything! Problem fixed!!
But yeah, even in the winter, we max out at around 400-ish kwhs. All of our heating is through wall units that do heat in the winter and cooling in the summer. They are really advanced (as is every electronic in Japan) and this helps us achieve our numbers. I want to have a sub 200 kwh month sometime though, so it is time to get serious here!! This summer is cool enough that I could probably bear through a couple mid 90s Fahrenheit 85% humidity days!
Last month our electric bill was for 56 kw-hrs, for the month. Of course, having 1.8 kw of PVs and a wind generator helps, but they only produce about 300kw-hrs a month at the most, in a windy month, and June wasn't very breezy. We have 2 freezers, 2 fridges, a deep-well water pump, and a shop with table saw, radial arm saw, 3 lathes, drill press, welder, etc.
Before the PVs and wind generator, I don't think we used more than 300kw-hrs a month very often.
Apparently you don't have a family that refuses to think about this stuff half the time! I installed CFLs all over the house not for what they save when the lights are being used, but for what they will save when they are simply left on all day NOT being used! (IR motion sensors aren't practical everywhere.)
Anyway, I just checked the garage door opener with the Kill-A-Watt and it sucks 4W doing nothing. Some other things I've isolated as power hogs when off are:
Those aren't huge draws, but add them up 24hrs/day over 30 days and it's 35kWh just for the privledge of being there. (Which really only amounts to about $3/month here.) We have started keeping both the fax machine and computer system switched off on a regular basis through power strips, and the Dish/entertainment center is daisy chained off of a GFI outlet that we just trip at night. Unfortunately our 2nd Dish/TV isn't as easy to do this with.
Now I'm wondering how much I'm throwing away on the microwave clock . .
We have started keeping both the fax machine and computer system switched off on a regular basis through power strips, ...Now I'm wondering how much I'm throwing away on the microwave clock . .
Hmm, I thought about this. If I just shut off the power strip does this work just as well as actually UNPLUGGING the power strip. I know the power strip might draw a minimal drain, but is just shutting it off very effective. I ask because I have a big screen HDTV as well as AC3 receiver, DVD player, Nintendo, PS1, ect, ect, ect all hooked up to same power strip. I can prob save a nice chunk if I just turn off.
No one uses that darn clock anyway, I think I might start unplugging the M-wave too