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Old 02-24-2011, 4:52 PM   #1
holabird holabird is offline
 
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Electricty Useage is killing me

My power bill has tripled since I started getting into this money pit hobby and I am trying to figure out who or what is the biggest culprit. Here is what I am running:

1. Little Giant pump MDQX-3 runs 24/7 @.9 amps
2. Dolphin AmpMaster pump 6250 runs 24/7 @4.8 amps
3. Nova Extreme Pro 12 bulb Fixture runs 8 hours @ 468 watts
4. 2 K3 and 1 K4 power head and 1 Vortech MP40 runs 24/7
5. ASM G3 skimmer with a Sedra 5000 pump 24/7
6. Aqua Aquaviolet UV sterilizer 114 watt 24/7
7. 2 72" VHO bulbs running about 8 hours

Add to that a few other things, 2 GFO filters, 3 heaters, etc etc. Not an electrical engineer so watts, amps, current dont equate much to me.

Where is my biggest power drain? Maybe I need to upgrade to newer more efficient pumps. Any suggestions.

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Old 02-24-2011, 4:58 PM   #2
LilRobb LilRobb is offline
 
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4.8A x 120V = 576W
and that's just a PUMP!

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Old 02-24-2011, 5:09 PM   #3
Rbredding Rbredding is offline
 
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convert everything to watts... that will tell your story.. (but that ampmaster pump is probably the culprit..)

to go from amps to watts, multiply by 120 - 4.8A is 576W (and so on)

you pay for your electricity by the KW/H (1,000 W/Hour)

I don't know the pump you're using.. but my reeflo snapper external pump runs under 110W per hour and moves somewhere around 2100gph...

if you're moving 6200gph, you just can't move that kind of volume of water without using some electricity..


your lights and your pump are using somewhere near 1,000W/ Hour..

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Old 02-24-2011, 5:19 PM   #4
JCampbell JCampbell is offline
 
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Hmmmm... Why do you have a Nova Extreme Pro and VHO's together? The Nova Extreme is plenty of light!

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Old 02-24-2011, 5:27 PM   #5
holabird holabird is offline
 
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It is. I only use the VHO's for early dawn and late dusk. They are more of a black light and really make the corals glow when it is dark. You are right tho, the Nova Extreme is a lot of light. The VHO's just supplement it. Good point. Thanks

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Hmmmm... Why do you have a Nova Extreme Pro and VHO's together? The Nova Extreme is plenty of light!

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Old 02-24-2011, 5:32 PM   #6
JCampbell JCampbell is offline
 
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Gotcha! Doesn't the Nova Extreme pro do dawn and dusk effects too?

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Old 02-24-2011, 5:36 PM   #7
holabird holabird is offline
 
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It does but I like what this light does with the "glow" effect.

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Gotcha! Doesn't the Nova Extreme pro do dawn and dusk effects too?

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Old 02-24-2011, 5:55 PM   #8
JCampbell JCampbell is offline
 
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Oh! Well, maybe when your lights go out in the Nova Extreme you can adjust to the proper color actinics that you like and get rid of the VHO's. Just a thought!
Good luck!

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Old 02-24-2011, 6:13 PM   #9
Crewdawg1981 Crewdawg1981 is offline
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Sweet jebus that pump uses double what my Reeflo Marlin takes...
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Old 02-24-2011, 9:34 PM   #10
Schwaggs Schwaggs is offline
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DUDE, that pump alone costs you:

576W/1000 * 24 hours * 30 days = 414 KWH @ $.09 per KWH = $37 per month....

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Old 02-24-2011, 9:42 PM   #11
Crewdawg1981 Crewdawg1981 is offline
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Do you NEED the ampmaster? I'd sell it and get something else.
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Old 02-24-2011, 9:49 PM   #12
Smoothie Smoothie is offline
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What is it used for? CL, running multiple items, etc?
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Old 02-24-2011, 9:55 PM   #13
Acroholic Acroholic is offline
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Replace the Ampmaster, and get rid of your VHOs (those suck a lot of juice). You can get the same glow effects with actinic led strips, which use about 1 watt each. I black light my 300 SPS tank with 24, 3 watt acticinc LEDS run at 1.5 watts each. There are much more efficient pumps on the market that your Dolphin.

Last edited by Acroholic; 02-24-2011 at 10:01 PM.

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Old 02-24-2011, 10:20 PM   #14
grouper therapy grouper therapy is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Crewdawg1981 View Post
Sweet jebus that pump uses double what my Reeflo Marlin takes...
But the marlin only a 2200 gph too.

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Old 02-24-2011, 10:31 PM   #15
Rasbora Rasbora is offline
 
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If you got a library card, go to your nearest public library and check out a kill-a-watt meter. Use it to test pumps, lights and other stuff.

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Old 02-25-2011, 8:02 AM   #16
rizmaher rizmaher is offline
 
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Rasbora, that is a really good idea. I did not know that the libraries carried them, I was planning to buy one from Frys.

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Old 02-25-2011, 8:06 AM   #17
Crewdawg1981 Crewdawg1981 is offline
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But the marlin only a 2200 gph too.
True and its more than I need. I figured I'd use the rest for other things like a chiller, CA reactor, carbon, etc.

I guess the OP didnt really say how much flow they needed or how big the tank was. There is already three Koralias and a Vortech?.

How big is this tank?
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Old 02-25-2011, 8:07 AM   #18
jmaneyapanda jmaneyapanda is offline
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3 heaters? What wattage? They are very inefficient power hogs too, and may not be necessary at all, depending on the setup. 114 watts of UV is going to heat up the water some.

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Old 02-25-2011, 9:00 AM   #19
MorganAtlanta MorganAtlanta is offline
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Maybe that's why the pump is called an "AmpMaster". If you have a huge pump for water movement you are going to pay. Powerheads are way more efficient than pumps (factor of 10 or more) for water movement in the tank. I'd certainly look at other pumps.

The heaters will only use the power they need to heat the water, so how many you have and how big they are probably won't affect the overall electricity usage too much, they'll just run for less time.

Lights eat up power, but the VHOs wouldn't amount to that much if they are only used as dusk/down for a couple hours a day.

Your big items will be main lights, pumps that run 24/7, and your chiller if you use one.

T5 lights are pretty efficient, so unless you are going to spring for LEDs, you won't get much better there, and the real long term savings from LEDs are the bulb replacement costs, not the electricity when compared to T5s.

Your UV is pretty big too. If you are running it 24/7, it could add up. You could probably put the UV on a timer and only run it for a couple hours when your main lights are off, especially if you are running a chiller. There's no sense constantly putting the heat into the water only to pay again to take it out.

The formula to use is watts/1000 x hours on per day x cost/KWH x 30 days = cost per month

If you want watts used from amps, you multiply the amps times the volts (120)

Be glad that we only pay $.09 or $.10 per KWH. Some places pay double that.

The cheap version of the Kill-A-Watt meter is only $20. I'd definitely get one before you go and replace a component to make sure it will pay off.

Last edited by MorganAtlanta; 02-25-2011 at 9:01 AM. Reason: fixed formula

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Old 02-25-2011, 9:07 AM   #20
Crewdawg1981 Crewdawg1981 is offline
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I just re-read the list and there are WAY too many water movement devices unless we're talking about a real headloss from the return pump and a massive tank (EDIT: Looked and saw your 180 Peninsula which looks awesome BTW)

There is already a little giant pump (~1100gph) - looks like a CL pump?
3 Koralias...
1 MP40w
Ampmaster

You could probably do away with the little giant and replace the ampmaster and find a significant power savings.
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