What is a kilowatt-hour?

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kilowatt-hour

Your electricity usage is measured by kilowatt-hour, but do you know what that term means?

Any appliance or lightbulb you purchase will have information regarding how much electricity it will consume when in use. For example, you may buy a 1,000-watt microwave or a 60-watt lightbulb.

Using 1,000 watts of electricity for one hour equals 1 kilowatt-hour. All of the appliances and electronics in your home use electricity at different rates. For example, a ceiling fan, when in use, consumes 24 watts of electricity. A flatscreen TV consumes 270 watts, while your home’s air-conditioning unit consumes between 3,500 and 4,000 watts.

The fewer watts something uses, the longer it takes to use up a kilowatt hour. For example, a standard, incandescent lightbulb uses 100 watts while a CFL lightbulb uses between 23 and 30 watts. That means choosing a more efficient CFL bulb will bring an energy savings of 70 percent.

By paying attention to your home’s kilowatt usage and the efficiency of your appliances and lighting, you can reduce your energy consumption and save money.

For videos on this and other topics, check out our energy-efficiency video library.

Laura King-Homan

About Laura King-Homan

Laura King-Homan is the managing editor of The Wire and a communications specialist at the Omaha Public Power District. She has nearly 20 years of print journalism and design experience, including the Omaha World-Herald.

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