» Home Energy Savings
» Need Electrical Help? Ask the Electrician
Save on Energy with Power Factor Correction
By Dave Rongey
Summary: High electrical power bills can be caused by a variety of problems one of which may be the need for power factor correction. This article will introduce you to the benefits of the Power Save 1200 and how it corrects power factor problems.
© By: Dave Rongey
Power Factor Devices could Save You up to 25%
A power correction device is a small gray box that fits neatly next to your breaker panel, saves you money year after year and protects the entire home.
These units were designed with the homeowner in mind, providing lower energy bills, increased motor and appliance life, as well as surge and lightning protection for all of the equipment inside of your house.
Residential customers throughout North America could see a realized savings of 8% - 10% typically and as much as 25% on their electrical usage (and thus power bills). Most units are UL Tested and CSA certified.
HELPS TO SAVE ON YOUR MONTHLY ELECTRIC BILLS
Money isn't all that you are saving when you use power factor correction products. It's an energy wise purchasing decision with many positive environmental implications. Power Suppliers also benefit by being able to supply power to more customers without the generation or acquisition of additional power.
Frequently Asked Questions about Power Factor Correction Devices
How Do These Units Work?
The typical device reduces the amount of power drawn from the utility by storing (in its capacitors) otherwise lost electricity (watts) caused by the inductive motors in your home. (Some examples of inductive motors are Air Conditioning units, refrigerators, freezers, washers, dryers, dishwashers, pool pumps, vacuum cleaners, furnace blower motors, fans etc.) The technology applied by the unit supplies that stored electricity back to your inductive loads, thus causing you to decrease your demand from the utility. If you decrease your demand from the utility, your meter slows down, and you use less electricity. The thought is, you’ve already paid for that electricity, why pay for it and waste it when you can pay for it, store it, and reuse it again. This whole process is called power factor optimization.
What is Power Factor?
Power factor is the percentage of electricity that’s delivered to your house and used effectively, compared to what is wasted. For example, a 1.0 power factor means that all the electricity that’s being delivered to your home is being used effectively for its purpose. However, most homes in America today have a .77 power factor or less. This means that 77% of the electricity that is coming thru your meter at your home or business is being used effectively, the other 23% is being wasted by your inductive load. With a low power factor, the utility has to deliver more electricity to do the same work. However, the unit increases that power factor in most cases to .97 or .98, thus increasing the effective use of your electricity and lowering your usage.
Will this work in any home?
Yes it does, as long as you have a circuit breaker panel with breaker switches and not the old screw in type fuses, the unit will work on any single-phase electric application for homes. If you say "yes" to only two or more of the following then you could be saving a significant amount of money on your electric bill right now!
Is a 3-phase unit available for commercial and industrial applications?
Will this unit affect any of my appliances and their normal use?
No, if anything, your motors will run about 10% cooler, which is good for a motor because heat is the enemy of a motor.
Are these units tested and approved by independent labs?
Most of the popular units are UL listed and tested, and has also been tested by independent evaluation electrical engineering groups, and these results of the tests should be made available on the manufacturer's web site. It should be noted that the technology is recognized by the U.S. Department of Energy.
How much can I expect to save per month by using a power correction device?
That will depend on many factors, including the size of your home, the amount of inductive motor load, and the amount you are paying per kilowatt-hour for electricity etc. However, generally speaking users of the product have seen up to 25% in reduced consumption, but the average savings is somewhere in the 15% to 20% range.
How long does it take for a power correction device to pay for itself?
|Generally about 6-12 months, but again, the same factors above apply, some will see sooner (6 months), some will see later (12 months).
Are these units easy to Install?
We recommend installation by an electrician. The unit comes with complete installation instructions. It installs in about 20-30 minutes.
How long will the a typical unit last?
They typically have a predicted life span of up to 20 years.
Why haven’t I heard of these product until now?
That’s easy, two words “cost effectiveness”. Up until recently, electric rates throughout America were cheap, costing us 2, 3 or 4 cents per kilowatt-hour. Now, electric rates are 8, 10, 12, 14, and 19 and in some cases New York City is 22 cents per Kwh, and Hawaii is 33.5 cents per Kwh. At the cheaper rates the Power-Save didn't make sense, but at the current rates, it makes all the sense in the world.
What About using one of these devices for Surge Protection?
These units will typically protect the entire home against power surges. No longer a need for so many surge protectors in the home. The US-1 provides a broad range of protection for hardwired appliances and most home electronics such as televisions, satellite equipment, entertainment systems, etc. The unit protects from power line surges as well as spikes caused by internal wiring problems, loose connections and fluctuating demand from large motors such as appliances, vacuum cleaners, heating and cooling equipment, etc.
The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wires!The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester that I use to easily Detect Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
The Quickest Way to Check for Faulty Electrical Wiring!The Plug-In Outlet Tester
This is the first tool I grab to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring. This popular tester is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included Tests standard 3-wire outlets UL Listed Light indicates if wiring is incorrect Very handy and easy to use.
Strip Off Wire Insulation without Nicking and Damaging the Electric Wire!The Wire Stripper and Wire Cutter
My absolute favorite wire stripping tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and this is the tool I use to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets..
The wire stripper will work on both solid and stranded wire. This tool is Very Handy and Easy to Use.
Residential Electrical Parts and Accessories