Electricity Bill Calculator
How to Calculate Your Electric Bill
Knowing how to calculate electricity cost goes far beyond learning how to read your electric meter. While using the meter is a good step towards saving on electricity costs, having an understanding of just how much each of your appliances is costing you to run is also important.
Once you know this, it is just a matter of learning how to calculate electricity cost for each appliance. Though doing so is not always easy, it can be managed and done by following some simple steps. Success in these efforts will grant you a better idea of what is costing you within
your home and should help you to reduce the cost of electricity each month.
Step 1: Check the Appliance
To begin calculating electricity cost, examine your appliances. You’ll want to look at the back or bottom of each to see if you can spot an energy unit listing. In the best case scenario, your appliance will have the wattage listed there. Sometimes the listing uses amperes instead, which is fine but will require an extra step to calculating cost.
Step 2: Calculating with wattage
In the event the wattage was listed on your appliance, you are in luck! Simply divide the wattage number by 1000, which is the same as moving the decimal left three spaces. This will give you the appliance’s kilowatt hours(kWh). When you have this number, you can either go online or check your bill to find your electric company’s rates. Multiply the appliance’s kWh by the company’s rate, and you will know how much each appliance costs to run, per hour.
Step 3: Calculating with amperes
If the electrical usage is listed with an A after it, that denotes amperes. To determine the cost of electricity for that appliance, you’ll need to convert the amperes to wattage. This is done by multiplying the amps by the voltage used (usually 120, sometimes 240), and then divide that
number by 1000 to determine the kWh. From there it works the same way as before, meaningthat you’ll need to look up the rates online and with a quick calculation, you will have the cost of running the appliance.
Using a Monitor
In the event you have an electrical usage monitor, like Kill-A-Watt, you do not have to know how to calculate electricity cost. This device assesses the efficiency of appliances and will tell you the kilowatt hours of your devices. With that information, you can multiply the value by the rates
charged per kilowatt hour by your energy provider and determine the cost of your devices.
To reinforce the steps above, the following is an example that is meant to demonstrate how to go about calculating electricity costs. Consider a kitchen blender that is labelled as using 1500 watts. You’ll next want to calculate the kilowatt hours of the appliance, so divide 1500 watts by 1000.
1500/1000 = 1.5 kWh
From there, you’ll want to take your electricity rate and multiply it by the kWh amount. For this example, imagine your rate is 11.7 cents/kWh.
1.5 kWh x 11.7 cents/kWH = 17.55 cents
And that is the cost of running your kitchen blender per hour. Now instead of beginning with wattage units, imagine that your blender was instead listed in amperes. For this example, your blender amperes are 15. What you’re going to do is multiply the 15 amperes by the voltage of 120.
15 amperes x 120 volts = 1800 watts
Once you have this answer you can divide by 1000 and then multiply by the rate of 11.7 cents/kWh to determine the cost.
1800 watts / 1000 = 1.8 kWh
1.8 kWh x 11.7 cents/kWh = 21.06 cents
In this example, the cost of the kitchen blender per hour is 21.06 cents.
Knowing how to calculate electricity cost can be extremely helpful in deciding how and when to use your appliances. For example, if your electric company charges more for certain hours of the day, you can choose not to use high kWh appliances during those hours. Once you know how to calculate electricity cost of an appliance, you can also be a more informed consumer, because you’ll know what all the numbers on the appliances mean, in terms of dollars and cents.