Kill a Watt

I borrowed Barry’s Kill a Watt. It’s a gizmo that tells you how many watts and kilowatt*hours your appliances are using. I found out a couple interesting tidbits.

Electricity costs me $0.11 per kilowatt. In my small apartment, I never get out of the first tier of electric rates, which peak out at $0.36 per kilowatt.

  • Baking 1 loaf of bread in my Breadman Ultimate automatic bread maker = 0.29 kilowatt*hrs = $0.03. When the electric bread maker oven is heating (maybe 1/2 the time the bread is in the bake cycle) running it uses 387 watts.
  • Running the gas oven uses a constant 340 watts to keep the igniter hot. That’s to say using my GAS oven uses more ELECTRICITY than my ELECTRIC oven!
  • My computer running at idle = 122 watts.
  • My computer running at “full tilt” working on SETI@Home = 192 watts. So running SETI@Home is like leaving a 70 watt lightbulb on all the time in addition to running my computer. If I left it on 24×7, that’d be a $67 donation to SETI@Home each year.
  • Charlotte’s laptop= variable between 18 and 50 watts
  • When Charlotte’s laptop is turned off, the power supply uses <1 watt.
  • My main LCD monitor running with mostly black on the screen = 33 watts.
  • My main LCD monitor running with mostly white on the screen = 33 watts.
  • Charlotte’s laptop uses 6 watts less when the screen is dark than when it’s bright.
  • All of my gizmos turned “off” use 29 watts. Scanner=12, router=10, modem=2, answering machine=5, monitor1<1, monitor2<1, computer<1, clock radio<1. That’s $28 per year.
  • Refrigerator=87 watts when running
  • Catching it? Priceless.


  1. k says:


    You have way too much time on your hands!

  2. Eep says:

    Where can I get a “Kill a Watt”?

  3. Lee says:

    Lots of places. Google for it.

  4. Adam S says:

    I want too get one too. Thanks for putting in the research.

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