Comments: Electric matters

Sounds like there's something up with your pump Witchy (too high a speed setting) or you've got some really appalling (or narrow bore) pipework. A central heating pump on a good system should take about 50W. We run ours for an hour a day (assuming it's actually on the whole of the time and I suspect not).
Pumps in general are not high power users, that's why we can use a solar powered one to bring water up about 12 meters from our well to our top field.

Posted by NiC on 4 May, 2022 at 10:12 AM

Depends how many pumps there are NiC, and how powerful. Ours are brand new and so is most of the copper piping. As I said, our set-up is not typical, but using the immersion heater is costing us, at most, 2 extra kWh per day, which is 58p now, which is half a litre of oil. No way could one heat a tank of water by boiler with less than half a litre of oil.

It also makes sense logically that direct electric water heating is more efficient than indirect heating with a boiler and using electric pump(s).

When our fish pond pump down south is off (in winter) we use 2kWh per day less than when it is on. It doesn't matter down there as the solar panels make enough power, but it might otherwise!

Posted by Blue Witch on 4 May, 2022 at 10:22 AM

OK, if it makes you happy.

Posted by Nic on 4 May, 2022 at 7:28 PM

Oil boilers also use electricity for other aspects of their running of course. Not huge amounts, but it all adds up.

Direct electric water heating will give close to 100% efficiency, but no boiler is ever going to be that efficient.

As ever, everyone's situation is different, and I can only report what we have discovered.

Posted by Blue Witch on 5 May, 2022 at 7:50 AM

The only way I can save money is by turning the Aga off, which I'll do when it's warm enough. It does make cooking inconvenient though and I doubt I'll be able to make bread in the summer, unless I use my sister's oven.

Posted by Z on 5 May, 2022 at 3:43 PM

Don't you find it makes your house really cold when it's off though Z? Ours North had a hissy fit while we were away for a week and all but went out. All the old-house dampness and mustiness which had been kept at bay with the Aga constatly warming the stone fabric of the building returned. A week back on and it's all gone away again. I always say that it's like a living heart in an old house.

And as for inconvenient cooking - with the South Aga off (at least until it goes on the market next month), for our quick van trip down this weekend to collect the rest of Mr BW's workshop stuff, I am wondering if one can successfully cook pasta/rice from 'raw' in a microwave? Necessity being the mother of invention of course.

Posted by Blue Witch on 5 May, 2022 at 4:21 PM

I had a roommate once that would put pasta and water in a covered bowl in the fridge overnight. It would swell as if cooked and he would nuke with sauce and eat. Might be able to do something like that with rice, too.

Posted by Scoakat on 5 May, 2022 at 10:31 PM
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