Shoppers and nature-lovers first know that it’s fall when the leaves start to change and pumpkin spice products start lining the shelves. But here at Alternate Current Solutions, we know it’s fall when we start to hear questions about electricity conservation during the cold winter months. The most popular question by far is on the subject of electric heaters. Is it possible to save money by turning off your HVAC and plugging in a box heater? The short answer is, no. For the long answer, keep reading.
When an Electric Space Heater Makes Sense
Many electric space heater brands advertise themselves as money-savers. However, this is only true under certain circumstances. An electric space heater can save you money, if you lower the central air, and use it in one small room only. However, can an electric space heater keep your house as warm as central heating does, for less money? In most cases, no. You will only reduce your expenses by reducing your level of warmth. In other words, you could realize the same savings and the same comfort level by simply cranking down the thermostat.
How Much Does It Cost to Heat a Room with a Space Heater?
If you’re still not convinced, let’s crunch the numbers. To figure out how much you’ll spend using one 1,500-watt space heater, use this formula:
- Multiply 1500W by X hours of use = A.
- Multiply A by your electricity rate per kilowatt hour = B.
- Divide B by 1000.
Most electric space heaters use 1,500 watts at full power, so that is what we use in the formula above. If your heater uses more or less power, you will want to change it to that number. Since you should never use a space heater while sleeping, we’ll calculate the cost of running a 1500-watt heater at 16 hours a day.
Based on the national average electricity rate, it would cost $2.82 a day to use a space heater for 16 hours a day. Multiply that by the meteorological length of winter, 90 days, and you have $253.8 for 3 months’ worth of heat. If your monthly heating bill is less than $84, this might be a money-saver. However, remember that this is to heat just one room with one heater. Plug-in electric heaters of this wattage will generally be ineffective at heating an entire house.
Get Winter-Ready with Our Holly Springs NC Electrician
If you need to cozy up a cold bathroom or office, electric space heaters are wonderful little devices. However, if you want to realize significant cost savings on your electric bills, there are many more effective steps you can take by calling our Holly Springs electrical contractor! We can help you swap out your lighting for energy-efficient bulbs; install energy-efficient appliances, and conduct an energy audit to determine where your system is struggling to draw power. To schedule an appointment, click here!