Why is our electricity bill so high? [more inside]
ChargerFilter: Do chargers for things like mobile phones, digital cameras, camcorders etc. use power (and cost money) if they are left plugged in? [more inside]
Physics filter: The original fuse for an Ikea lighting system was rated for 6.3A and 250V. After a power surge, I noticed that the fuse had been toasted. Upon visiting 3 hardware stores, the best I could find was a similar fuse rated for 3.15A and 125V. Since V=I*R, it follows that the resistance is identical when the original fuse is compared with the replacement. Does this mean that these fuses are functionally equal?
How do electric meters work? How do they measure the amount of charge you used? I suspect they must know the amount of charge that enters the home, and then they have some way to measure the amount of charge that leaves the house, but I'm really not sure. [more inside]
Homerepairfilter: a light bulb blows out. The glass and metal part separate. How do I get the metal part out so I can replace the bulb? [more inside]
I just found out our new neighbors are stealing our power. What to do? [more inside]
I'm trying to insulate my window/frame... can anyone help me devise a solution? [more inside]
EnergyPurchaseFilter: What is the deal with non-regulated electric purchasing? Who's had experience with this, and was it all the [highly suspect] awesome hoopla that it's played to be by the companies/government? Bonus points if you live/have lived in New Hampshire, where I'm trying to figure out this whole mess. [more inside]
In the UK we have cheap rate electricity between 12.30am and 7.30am, but how does it work? [more inside]
I've been living in my apartment since December, and I still haven't received an electric bill from ConEd. It was made clear that we had to sign up to receive power and we did that -- my wife called in, gave them her social security number, address, etc. Still, no bill. The meter man comes by every month and checks the meter. Still, no bill. [more inside]
I need to make the bulbs in a lamp pulse on and off. [more inside]
How do you get your music off a malfunctioning iPod? [more inside]
Safe to use an extension cord for a small refrigerator? [more inside]
TiVo with Dish Network in a 30-year-old high-rise Chicago building? [more inside]
I'm looking for a safe way to generate a lot of sparks for a film. [more inside]
On our property there's a rather substantial brook running through it, which runs year round and doesn't freeze over. It's probably too wide for a traditional undershot waterwheel (at least 12 feet across at its most narrow), to supply some alternate power to our house, but maybe there's something else that could make the most of the constant flowing water?
My garbage disposal trips the nearby GFCI circuit every time I use it. What can I do? [more inside]
How can the energy cost of an electronic device over a span of time be calculated?
Cat Filter - In the winter the static electricity gets in the way of the cat & my... well... lets just say personal time. Any advice? [more inside]
I'm looking for a book that teaches electricity well. The Mims book definitely doesn't cut it - I want something more along the lines of "The Way Things Work" in clarity and accessibility, but I still want it to actually teach the underlying math; i.e., I want it to show me the material in pictures and equations. [more inside]
I was typing on my laptop and my husband touched my face. His hand gave me a shock, and then my computer restarted itself. [more inside]
How much electricity is wasted from a fridge that isn't sealed properly? [more inside]
I can sequence DNA, but when it comes to electricity, I can't tell my AC from my DC. Help me. [more inside]
Grounding my old Marantz stereo amp in a two-prong outlet? (We're talking American 110v.) [more inside]
How do I judge the electrical system in an apartment? [more inside]
Can you buy power strips in the US that have separate on/off switches for each socket? [more inside]
Why is electricity so much more expensive then natural gas? Am I reading my bill wrong, or is it really an order of magnitude cheaper? [more inside]
I'd like to help power the house and exercise, both solved with one solution, and need some suggestions. [more inside]
I love my lotus lamp. I hate the cord. Is it possible to convert into a little battery-powered beacon of enlightenment? [more inside]
Will a 240 VAC panini grill work on 110 VAC? [more inside]
Was Edison's original light bulb really designed to never run out? [more inside]
If the bulb is out, or empty, but the switch is on, are you still paying for power?
What does (+,−) mean? [more inside]
How do I fix a light fixture which causes a bulb to blow out, but only after a month or so? [more inside]
What are some good resources to learn about basic electricity? [more inside]
Please help me find this great picture of electrical arcs. I saw this photo a while back. I'm pretty sure it was in a magazine. It was of a great big round room, with some sort of large apparatus, like a collider or something (it wasn't a collider I don't think). There were scaffolding and cat walks running everywhere. Lots of pipes and fittings. Everything was gold or copper or something. And the entire room is covered in arcs of electricity. Great big bolts running all around the room, with smaller and smaller branches and fingers breaking off to fill up every metal surface area with arcs. It was some sort of electrical discharge as a result of the experiment that was being run. I can't remember what it was, so I don't even know what to look for in Google. Any help would be appreciated. Even just a guess as to what the device was that would produce that, so I have a starting point to try and find it. Thanks.
I'm losing a lot of electronic gadgets to lightning strikes. What are the best ways to prevent further damage? [more inside]
SolarPowerFilter: My wife and I love the idea of solar power and would love to compliment our current electrical consumption with some tasty renewable energy, but where do we start? [more inside]
How much does it cost (or what is the amount of electricity / volume of water used) to do one full load of laundry, as an average. Or, how would I go about getting precise figures for this? I want to know how much too much we pay to operate the pay-per-load laundry machines in our new apartment building.
Why is it that if I walk up and stick my finger in a wall outlet, I'll get shocked even though I'm not grounded? I can see getting shocked when standing barefoot on wet ground, but come on... on a floor wearing tennis shoes? How does that work?
My boyfriend and I live in a flat built in the '20s. We have reason to suspect that the outlets provide inconsistent amount of electrical current. Is there something we need to get for our computers to protect them? [more inside]
I have two computers, each with something like 350W power supplies. By keeping them on 24/7, am I consuming the equivalent of seven 100-watt light bulbs around the clock? What can I do (either software or hardware) to make my machines more power-efficient? Also - while I'm on the subject - does an incandescent bulb consume less when it's on a dimmer and that dimmer is turned down? [more inside]
Living near power lines? Searching for a home, my girlfriend and I have found a house we want to make an offer on. It's our dream house in a nice town, but there's an issue... the house sits about 100 yards away from this... a relatively small power distribution/transfer station adjacent to the property. Do we have anything to be concerned about or should I go buy some lead boxer shorts? [more inside]
Just a stupid question that's puzzled me for years: Why is it that, on electric fans, the order of the settings on the switch is OFF - HI - MED - LO? I'm sure there's an electrical reason for this, but I don't know what it is, since I know nothing about circuitry. One would think that OFF - LO - MED - HI would make more sense. Can someone explain this to me?
I just replaced a burned out bulb in my overhead kitchen fixture. The bulb that burned out was a 60 watter. I only had a 100 watter on hand. I know I'm hastening fossil fuel depletion, but am I also causing a fire risk? What about ignoring the wattage recomendations in favor of higher watts in table lamps?
Is my water cooler doubling my electricity bill? [more inside]
In my new apartment, the outlet I have to use for my computer system is hooked up to a lightswitch that also controls the room's lights. Any good ideas on how to undo this situation? [more inside]
If I have AC power at 50Hz, does it mean my lightbulb is flickering 100 times a second and I just can't see it? Is this why, when passing a street light in a speeding train, it can appear as a series of dots in your vision?
The lights in my house occasionally pulse--that is, they'll rapidly get noticeably dimmer and brighter numerous times within a matter of just a few seconds. I'd say "flicker," but they never seem to actually go completely dark. Does this indicate faulty wiring, or something else? [more inside]
I have a number of X10 switches controlling lights throughout my apartment. I have a number of problems with them... [more inside]