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Thoughts on Power Usage (iPhone and House)

BigMcGuire

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Original poster
Jan 10, 2012
6,380
7,943
California

Ran across this article last night while reading on reddit. I love articles like these as power, batteries, and energy usage are a huge hobby of mine.

For my devices, I've not had a lot of luck using wireless chargers. I find they overheat my phone when leaving my phone to sit on them throughout the day (from WhatsApp, music, and other light usage). That and, I've come back to a burning hot phone due to misalignment a few times. I found a cradle (Anker PowerPort Wireless 5 Stand) that does better than most and have that next to my desk.

I prefer to plug in as it is cooler and I can use my Anker external batteries that I try to charge up with a small 21 solar panel setup. Charging via solar is extremely time consuming and now that I live in an apartment complex, very difficult to do as sun doesn't hit anything I can leave out in the open safely (like a backyard) anymore. That and, my iPhone can go days without needing charging (same for iPad).


Thoughts on Power Usage:
Most of the power that states use is later in the evening. http://www.caiso.com/TodaysOutlook/Pages/default.aspx (image below) - That curve of usage shows that about at 1600-2100 (4-9pm) is when power plants are going at it and CNG is being burned like crazy (here in California).

I'm on the Socal Edison Plan where the most expensive power usage is 4pm - 9pm and outside of this is a lot less. https://www.sce.com/residential/rates/Time-Of-Use-Residential-Rate-Plans

1596728612222.png


I try to do all my battery charging in the morning (clothes washing/etc) and I try to use less power between 4pm - 9pm.


Yes, there are MANY ways we can use a LOT less power instead of going from wired to wireless but I found the article fun. The corresponding reddit thread was a fun read too: https://www.reddit.com/r/Android/comments/i4gb45 --- In the end, driving less, using LED light bulbs, eating less meat, shutting off computers at night (desktops), and using the AC a little less can add up to significantly more power savings than wired to wireless.

Anyone else find stuff like this fun to read/discuss? :) It is a small hobby of mine.
 

MacBH928

Contributor
May 17, 2008
4,826
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I didn't read the article, but I think wireless charging it stupid. I don't want electricity in the air as in we need another extra radiation or waves in our environment. I think a nice middle ground would be metal-to-metal contact. There is no "plugging", its like those cordless phones stands.

I don't care fore energy saving personally, but I think adapting more efficient technologies will use less resources and release less CO2, and maybe direct the saved resources to those who are more in need of it or can't afford it. Just saving 5% on the whole of USA, how much money is saved? how much less pollution will we have?

This has happened as a side benefit after people adapter flat panels displays over CRTs, which I heard suck huge amount of energy. Fluorescent and LED lightbulbs save a lot too as I have heard. People are starting to transfer to electric cars, not sure if this is better for the environment or will eat more of earth resources. I always imagined electricity as a huge consumer of earth resources.
 
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C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
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I didn't read the article, but I think wireless charging it stupid. I don't want electricity in the air as in we need another extra radiation or waves in our environment. I think a nice middle ground would be metal-to-metal contact. There is no "plugging", its like those cordless phones stands.
Isn't wireless charging (at least in the sense that's available currently) something that requires contact?
 
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compwiz1202

macrumors 68030
May 20, 2010
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Isn't wireless charging (at least in the sense that's available currently) something that requires contact?
I think they might mean it would be more efficient metal to metal like the landline cordless phones are. But one issue it if Apple wants full wireless, they will need some range to wireless charging. I wouldn't want to hold my phone against a pad constantly if I need to charge while using.
 
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BigMcGuire

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Jan 10, 2012
6,380
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I didn't read the article, but I think wireless charging it stupid. I don't want electricity in the air as in we need another extra radiation or waves in our environment. I think a nice middle ground would be metal-to-metal contact. There is no "plugging", its like those cordless phones stands.

I don't care fore energy saving personally, but I think adapting more efficient technologies will use less resources and release less CO2, and maybe direct the saved resources to those who are more in need of it or can't afford it. Just saving 5% on the whole of USA, how much money is saved? how much less pollution will we have?

This has happened as a side benefit after people adapter flat panels displays over CRTs, which I heard suck huge amount of energy. Fluorescent and LED lightbulbs save a lot too as I have heard. People are starting to transfer to electric cars, not sure if this is better for the environment or will eat more of earth resources. I always imagined electricity as a huge consumer of earth resources.

I am not a huge fan of wireless charging. I've had problems with it and I'm surprised to see the 50% increase in energy usage. I figured it was SOME but not 50%. I'm a huge fan of LED light bulbs, solar panels (though I can't afford house level, just the Anker 21 watt panels on Amazon), and watching energy usage with my Kill-A-Watt. By no means am I a scrooge when it comes to energy usage - I don't mind if lights are left on, etc. It's a hobby of mine.

For example, I can tell you, for the last 125 hours, my desktop, work laptop, MacBook Pro, Spectrum router, my Linksys router, and my mobile devices have consumed 10.12 kWhr.

Yeah, people with electric cars often don't realize that the power they use isn't always "clean" power and they often charge overnight during times when renewable power is not available (solar). But it sure is cheaper and cleaner than gas (depending on what you buy of course).

Yeah the CRT to LCD transition was huge. Even from old LCDs to newer LED monitors - massive power reduction. In our office, the guy who owns the building, tells me that as computers have gotten more efficient, his electric bill has dropped over the many years.
 
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BigMcGuire

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Jan 10, 2012
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Isn't wireless charging (at least in the sense that's available currently) something that requires contact?

Yep, not true "wireless". I've got a cable going to a stand that holds my phone, but my phone needs direct contact to it. If I put the phone on it just a LITTLE bit off, the phone won't charge or it starts getting so hot I could cook an egg on it... which of course makes me worried every time I put my phone on it.

I've given away 3 of my 4 wireless charging pucks/stands because of this. :/
 
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BigMcGuire

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Jan 10, 2012
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I think they might mean it would be more efficient metal to metal like the landline cordless phones are. But one issue it if Apple wants full wireless, they will need some range to wireless charging. I wouldn't want to hold my phone against a pad constantly if I need to charge while using.

Agreed. I have several 6ft Anker powerline lightning cables (and USB C) and I love them. Can use them reading on a chair far away from a wall socket with no problems.



(Edit: Weird, I expected merged posts not 3 separate).
 
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Apple fanboy

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Feb 21, 2012
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Behind the Lens, UK
I’d never really thought about the effect of wireless charging over wired. I rarely use the cable in my iPhone XS Max. But the power usage is pretty minimal compared to other power hungry devices.
Yes I’m old enough to remember the heat you’d get in an office space from all those desktop towers and CRT monitors.
But we don’t have AC in the house. That’s very common in the U.K. We put underfloor heating in at the start of the year. Very energy efficient. If funds allowed I’d add solar panels for sure.
 
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BigMcGuire

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Jan 10, 2012
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California
I’d never really thought about the effect of wireless charging over wired. I rarely use the cable in my iPhone XS Max. But the power usage is pretty minimal compared to other power hungry devices.
Yes I’m old enough to remember the heat you’d get in an office space from all those desktop towers and CRT monitors.
But we don’t have AC in the house. That’s very common in the U.K. We put underfloor heating in at the start of the year. Very energy efficient. If funds allowed I’d add solar panels for sure.

Do you have a swamp cooler for summer? I visited Germany a few years ago and was surprised at the lack of AC. The rooms in our house get close to 90F (32.2C) quickly in the summer without AC. Our winters here where I live now in California are pretty mild so it is rare for us to do heat. When I lived in the high desert (California) we'd burn $160/mo in natural gas keeping the house above 60F (15.5C) as it regularly dropped below 0F (-17C) outside.
 
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Falhófnir

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Aug 19, 2017
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Its a shame Apple might be going all in on a very wasteful tech when they introduce the first portless phone next year, hopefully they can work to improve efficiency, I agree with @MacBH928 that a sort of magsafe (or smart connector) style charging port might be a better idea than traditional wireless if they want a hermetically sealed device. This sort of move goes counter to their other efforts on sustainability.
 
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MacBH928

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May 17, 2008
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I am very skeptical of solar panels, people say they are using them to power their homes but I doubt they bring enough power in. It would be cool if we can install them to relocate some power use to them but I doubt the price difference is worth it.

Isn't wireless charging (at least in the sense that's available currently) something that requires contact?
I think all you need is a close distance but not direct contact, so if you hold the phone 1mm over the charge pad it will still charge.

Its a shame Apple might be going all in on a very wasteful tech when they introduce the first portless phone next year, hopefully they can work to improve efficiency, I agree with @MacBH928 that a sort of magsafe (or smart connector) style charging port might be a better idea than traditional wireless if they want a hermetically sealed device. This sort of move goes counter to their other efforts on sustainability.

yes, magsafe for iPhone, what a great idea!
 
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SandboxGeneral

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Sep 8, 2010
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My phone, a Pixel 3a, is wireless charging capable but I've never tried it. I'm not against it at all and think the desire and drive to make things more convenient are cool. I just don't do it because it is less efficient than charging via wire. If my car had a wireless charging area I'd use it for my phone when I'm driving around simply because it would be there.

I've always been trying to find reasonable ways of reducing my electricity consumption. I've had LED light bulbs for almost a decade now. I power down my PC when not in use and only turn on my FreeNAS server when I need it.

The biggest hit to my electric bill is the air conditioning. I'm on the third floor of an apartment building and it faces the east. So my apartment gets cooked by the sun all day long. I had all the windows tinted as dark as I could get and with UVA/B protection and bought solar drapes too. That helped a lot, but the electric bill is still pretty bad in the summer. The landlord also installed newer, larger and more efficient AC units a couple of years ago too. I've added a Nest thermostat and signed up with DTE Energy's Rush Hour program. The Rush Hour program allows DTE to send signals to my thermostat and adjust it automatically when the load on the power grid is high, thus reducing my energy consumption during those times.

I've also set up Seasonal Savings on the Nest to where it will make micro adjustments to the routine to better accommodate my routines while also saving a few bucks by not running the AC so much when I'm not home.

All in all, I've done about all I can think of to reduce my electricity use at home.
 
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Apple fanboy

macrumors Westmere
Feb 21, 2012
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Behind the Lens, UK
My phone, a Pixel 3a, is wireless charging capable but I've never tried it. I'm not against it at all and think the desire and drive to make things more convenient are cool. I just don't do it because it is less efficient than charging via wire. If my car had a wireless charging area I'd use it for my phone when I'm driving around simply because it would be there.

I've always been trying to find reasonable ways of reducing my electricity consumption. I've had LED light bulbs for almost a decade now. I power down my PC when not in use and only turn on my FreeNAS server when I need it.

The biggest hit to my electric bill is the air conditioning. I'm on the third floor of an apartment building and it faces the east. So my apartment gets cooked by the sun all day long. I had all the windows tinted as dark as I could get and with UVA/B protection and bought solar drapes too. That helped a lot, but the electric bill is still pretty bad in the summer. The landlord also installed newer, larger and more efficient AC units a couple of years ago too. I've added a Nest thermostat and signed up with DTE Energy's Rush Hour program. The Rush Hour program allows DTE to send signals to my thermostat and adjust it automatically when the load on the power grid is high, thus reducing my energy consumption during those times.

I've also set up Seasonal Savings on the Nest to where it will make micro adjustments to the routine to better accommodate my routines while also saving a few bucks by not running the AC so much when I'm not home.

All in all, I've done about all I can think of to reduce my electricity use at home.
We don’t have AC in the UK. Heating of course. But yes I can imagine if it’s as hot as it is today all the time, you’d not have much choice.
But I think we all do what we can. You have to strike the balance between living in a mud hut and having everything powered on 24/7.
 
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A.Goldberg

macrumors 68020
Jan 31, 2015
2,396
9,036
Boston

Ran across this article last night while reading on reddit. I love articles like these as power, batteries, and energy usage are a huge hobby of mine.

For my devices, I've not had a lot of luck using wireless chargers. I find they overheat my phone when leaving my phone to sit on them throughout the day (from WhatsApp, music, and other light usage). That and, I've come back to a burning hot phone due to misalignment a few times. I found a cradle (Anker PowerPort Wireless 5 Stand) that does better than most and have that next to my desk.

I prefer to plug in as it is cooler and I can use my Anker external batteries that I try to charge up with a small 21 solar panel setup. Charging via solar is extremely time consuming and now that I live in an apartment complex, very difficult to do as sun doesn't hit anything I can leave out in the open safely (like a backyard) anymore. That and, my iPhone can go days without needing charging (same for iPad).


Thoughts on Power Usage:
Most of the power that states use is later in the evening. http://www.caiso.com/TodaysOutlook/Pages/default.aspx (image below) - That curve of usage shows that about at 1600-2100 (4-9pm) is when power plants are going at it and CNG is being burned like crazy (here in California).

I'm on the Socal Edison Plan where the most expensive power usage is 4pm - 9pm and outside of this is a lot less. https://www.sce.com/residential/rates/Time-Of-Use-Residential-Rate-Plans

View attachment 941276

I try to do all my battery charging in the morning (clothes washing/etc) and I try to use less power between 4pm - 9pm.


Yes, there are MANY ways we can use a LOT less power instead of going from wired to wireless but I found the article fun. The corresponding reddit thread was a fun read too: https://www.reddit.com/r/Android/comments/i4gb45 --- In the end, driving less, using LED light bulbs, eating less meat, shutting off computers at night (desktops), and using the AC a little less can add up to significantly more power savings than wired to wireless.

Anyone else find stuff like this fun to read/discuss? :) It is a small hobby of mine.

Interesting hobby, seems a bit OCD. I rarely use wireless charging on my iPhone 11 Pro. If I have to charge my phone during the day, I don’t want to wait around to have it charge at the diminished rate of wireless. Fast-charging with USB is far more practical. I plug my phone in at night, I don’t find wireless to be a practical benefit in this case. During the day I’m not going to unnecessarily charge my battery- it’ll just deplete the battery health unnecessarily in the long term.

The only place I think wireless charging might have some value is in vehicles. A lot of new cars have built-in wireless charging. Not having to deal with charging wires in this case seems like a potential convenience. It’s not a car feature I’d go out of my way to find though.

The funny thing is wireless charging was introduced a few years ago as a seemingly new development (ie iPhone 7?)... but I briefly had a Palm Pre circa 2008(?) that had a wireless charging system.

According to this article, an iPhone consumes about 20WHin an overnight charge. Let’s say electricity costs $0.24 per kWH. 20WH/day x 365 days/year = 7300WH/year x 1kWH/1000WH = 7.3kW hours per year to charge an iPhone.

7.3kWH x $0.24kWH = $1.72 per year to charge an iPhone daily.

There are definitely things all of us can do and should do to reduce our personal electricity demands. Cell phone charging seems like one of the least significant factors in all aspects of benefits.

Several years ago I installed a smart thermostat. Our new home has a Honeywell Lyric smart thermostat. The HVAC is on a schedule and we use geofencing to better tailor the temperature/energy consumption. It has had a tremendous impact on our electric (AC) and gas (heat, cooktop) bills. Our hot water is included in our HOA fee. Electricity here in Boston has become stupidly expensive. The new thermostat has saved us at least 30%. I can’t imagine having a home with electric heat and hot water.

Yeah, people with electric cars often don't realize that the power they use isn't always "clean" power and they often charge overnight during times when renewable power is not available (solar). But it sure is cheaper and cleaner than gas (depending on what you buy of course).
Yeah, if your car’s charging power is primarily from fossil fuels, you’re really not providing much of any environmental benefit, especially when you factor in the costs of battery manufacturing.

EV’s are still a niche market but likely will gain a reasonable market share in the next 10-15 years. It’s going to be a serious problem though when you consider the US electric infrastructure is not where it should be. If 30% of cars end up being BEV’s in 2035, the power is going to have to come from somewhere.

Wind and solar are not capable of meeting our needs. They also lack the kinetic inertia needed for large electric motors (ie manufacturing, commercial equipment, electric trains) to operate properly. Energy storage is a huge problem. Batteries do a great job but are extremely expensive, carry their own environmental issues, take up a lot of space, and have very limited life longevity. Mechanical storage has a very limited duration and require massive constructions. Pumped hydroelectric is limited to certain geographies and climates.

I would love for the US to explore and implement new safer, more efficient, nuclear technologies. It‘s a lot easier to solve the issue of nuclear waste storage (a problem that already exists regardless of the future of nuclear in the US) than create magical new clean energy source. At the very least nuclear can serve as a stop gap until our solar and battery technologies develop.
 
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Falhófnir

macrumors 601
Aug 19, 2017
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Interesting hobby, seems a bit OCD. I rarely use wireless charging on my iPhone 11 Pro. If I have to charge my phone during the day, I don’t want to wait around to have it charge at the diminished rate of wireless. Fast-charging with USB is far more practical. I plug my phone in at night, I don’t find wireless to be a practical benefit in this case. During the day I’m not going to unnecessarily charge my battery- it’ll just deplete the battery health unnecessarily in the long term.

The only place I think wireless charging might have some value is in vehicles. A lot of new cars have built-in wireless charging. Not having to deal with charging wires in this case seems like a potential convenience. It’s not a car feature I’d go out of my way to find though.

The funny thing is wireless charging was introduced a few years ago as a seemingly new development (ie iPhone 7?)... but I briefly had a Palm Pre circa 2008(?) that had a wireless charging system.

According to this article, an iPhone consumes about 20WHin an overnight charge. Let’s say electricity costs $0.24 per kWH. 20WH/day x 365 days/year = 7300WH/year x 1kWH/1000WH = 7.3kW hours per year to charge an iPhone.

7.3kWH x $0.24kWH = $1.72 per year to charge an iPhone daily.


There are definitely things all of us can do and should do to reduce our personal electricity demands. Cell phone charging seems like one of the least significant factors in all aspects of benefits.

Several years ago I installed a smart thermostat. Our new home has a Honeywell Lyric smart thermostat. The HVAC is on a schedule and we use geofencing to better tailor the temperature/energy consumption. It has had a tremendous impact on our electric (AC) and gas (heat, cooktop) bills. Our hot water is included in our HOA fee. Electricity here in Boston has become stupidly expensive. The new thermostat has saved us at least 30%. I can’t imagine having a home with electric heat and hot water.


Yeah, if your car’s charging power is primarily from fossil fuels, you’re really not providing much of any environmental benefit, especially when you factor in the costs of battery manufacturing.

EV’s are still a niche market but likely will gain a reasonable market share in the next 10-15 years. It’s going to be a serious problem though when you consider the US electric infrastructure is not where it should be. If 30% of cars end up being BEV’s in 2035, the power is going to have to come from somewhere.

Wind and solar are not capable of meeting our needs. They also lack the kinetic inertia needed for large electric motors (ie manufacturing, commercial equipment, electric trains) to operate properly. Energy storage is a huge problem. Batteries do a great job but are extremely expensive, carry their own environmental issues, take up a lot of space, and have very limited life longevity. Mechanical storage has a very limited duration and require massive constructions. Pumped hydroelectric is limited to certain geographies and climates.

I would love for the US to explore and implement new safer, more efficient, nuclear technologies. It‘s a lot easier to solve the issue of nuclear waste storage (a problem that already exists regardless of the future of nuclear in the US) than create magical new clean energy source. At the very least nuclear can serve as a stop gap until our solar and battery technologies develop.
The cumulative extra power usage assuming eventually there are a billion + wireless-only iPhones in use globally, each using 47% more power than now, will be significant though. Hopefully most countries will have a larger renewable generating capacity by that point because it's a lot of extra pollution going into the air otherwise!
 
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BigMcGuire

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Jan 10, 2012
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Interesting hobby, seems a bit OCD. I rarely use wireless charging on my iPhone 11 Pro. If I have to charge my phone during the day, I don’t want to wait around to have it charge at the diminished rate of wireless. Fast-charging with USB is far more practical. I plug my phone in at night, I don’t find wireless to be a practical benefit in this case. During the day I’m not going to unnecessarily charge my battery- it’ll just deplete the battery health unnecessarily in the long term.

The only place I think wireless charging might have some value is in vehicles. A lot of new cars have built-in wireless charging. Not having to deal with charging wires in this case seems like a potential convenience. It’s not a car feature I’d go out of my way to find though.

The funny thing is wireless charging was introduced a few years ago as a seemingly new development (ie iPhone 7?)... but I briefly had a Palm Pre circa 2008(?) that had a wireless charging system.

According to this article, an iPhone consumes about 20WHin an overnight charge. Let’s say electricity costs $0.24 per kWH. 20WH/day x 365 days/year = 7300WH/year x 1kWH/1000WH = 7.3kW hours per year to charge an iPhone.

7.3kWH x $0.24kWH = $1.72 per year to charge an iPhone daily.

There are definitely things all of us can do and should do to reduce our personal electricity demands. Cell phone charging seems like one of the least significant factors in all aspects of benefits.

Several years ago I installed a smart thermostat. Our new home has a Honeywell Lyric smart thermostat. The HVAC is on a schedule and we use geofencing to better tailor the temperature/energy consumption. It has had a tremendous impact on our electric (AC) and gas (heat, cooktop) bills. Our hot water is included in our HOA fee. Electricity here in Boston has become stupidly expensive. The new thermostat has saved us at least 30%. I can’t imagine having a home with electric heat and hot water.


Yeah, if your car’s charging power is primarily from fossil fuels, you’re really not providing much of any environmental benefit, especially when you factor in the costs of battery manufacturing.

EV’s are still a niche market but likely will gain a reasonable market share in the next 10-15 years. It’s going to be a serious problem though when you consider the US electric infrastructure is not where it should be. If 30% of cars end up being BEV’s in 2035, the power is going to have to come from somewhere.

Wind and solar are not capable of meeting our needs. They also lack the kinetic inertia needed for large electric motors (ie manufacturing, commercial equipment, electric trains) to operate properly. Energy storage is a huge problem. Batteries do a great job but are extremely expensive, carry their own environmental issues, take up a lot of space, and have very limited life longevity. Mechanical storage has a very limited duration and require massive constructions. Pumped hydroelectric is limited to certain geographies and climates.

I would love for the US to explore and implement new safer, more efficient, nuclear technologies. It‘s a lot easier to solve the issue of nuclear waste storage (a problem that already exists regardless of the future of nuclear in the US) than create magical new clean energy source. At the very least nuclear can serve as a stop gap until our solar and battery technologies develop.

Great post! Thanks for taking the time to reply. Yes, definitely agree about the OCD part. I think the reason why I like Anker batteries and watching the batteries on my Mac, iPhone, iPad is because ... it's all I can control really. I do watch the CA ISO website and some of my coworkers have given me access to their solar accounts so I can watch the solar power generation that they installed on their houses. I'll glance at it every few days or so - kind of fun seeing that stuff.

Agreed completely about the tiniest of impacts. Not running the AC for an hour would make up many years of cell phone usage. Like @Falhófnir said - multiply your cellphone by a billion and all of a sudden we have an impact that requires hundreds if not thousands of power plants. If 100 million people shifted charging their mobile phones to the morning instead of the evening, we would be able to run power plants across the USA at a lower level, especially in the 4-9pm range.

I too have a Honeywell smart thermostat with this apartment I moved into 2 years ago (very new). We absolutely love it. It syncs up with Socal Edison (power company) and automatically enforces the save power days during high usage (it will increase our AC temps to 86F for a few hours and credit our bill significantly ($40+ in summer)).

Nuclear power has always been something that has depressed me. Here in California we are STILL PAYING nuclear power plant de-commissioning fees. On top of that, once we shut those down, we burn so much natural gas (for our power plants) that they worry we won't have enough gas to heat our houses in the winter - that and kWh costs went through the roof, not to count pollution output of the state. Nuclear power was clean, extremely cheap, and reduced pollution significantly. I remember when they closed the San Onofre plant https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Onofre_Nuclear_Generating_Station we started having severe outages as they switched to CNG power plants that were horribly unreliable in the early days. Power costs since 2013 have skyrocketed here since then.

CA ISO is fun to watch. I get to see the combination of solar, wind, hydro, batteries, imported power from Arizona, and CNG power the state throughout the day. California has invested massive amounts of $ into solar and wind so much so that 50-60% of our power during the daylight comes from these renewable sources. It's the 4-9pm that is where the CNG plants fire up and have to provide 2-3x the power.
Which is why SCE (Socal Edison) pays people like me to use less power during those hours. I get a $40-$60 credit every month on my bill to use less power during the 4-9pm (Time of Use plan) timeframe.

Our bill is still $150-$200 in the summer, but drops to $30-$40 in the winter and our bill is half of neighbors/family in California. No, I'm not an electric nut - my mother in law has a 1500w heater in her room that she's allowed to use whenever she wants (and my wife can do whatever she wants). :)


Talking about this stuff is fun - a hobby of mine for sure. Thanks for taking the time to respond. :)
 
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BigMcGuire

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The cumulative extra power usage assuming eventually there are a billion + wireless-only iPhones in use globally, each using 47% more power than now, will be significant though. Hopefully most countries will have a larger renewable generating capacity by that point because it's a lot of extra pollution going into the air otherwise!

Agreed, 47% more power times a billion mobile devices and we're talking some serious power usage! I am still shocked that it is around 50% more power hungry. It is very convenient to throw my phone on a wireless charger (it is sitting on one right now). My AirPods also can benefit from being thrown on a wireless charger. It does charge 3x slower than an 18w brick and has problems (of heat) I mentioned above.

But yeah, imagine how many more power plants we'd have to turn on / activate to power 1 billion * 47%. Kind of sad really. That said, I guess one can be comforted by the knowledge that a lot of people today are using mobile phones instead of desktops, laptops, etc. And that is a huge power savings in itself.

When I took a computer science course a few years ago at a community college, I was surprised at the amount of kids trying to use their mobile phones to take the online quizzes and submit homework online. It was >60% of the class. I know quite a few people who use their phones as their primary computer (relatives, etc).
 
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BigMcGuire

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Jan 10, 2012
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My phone, a Pixel 3a, is wireless charging capable but I've never tried it. I'm not against it at all and think the desire and drive to make things more convenient are cool. I just don't do it because it is less efficient than charging via wire. If my car had a wireless charging area I'd use it for my phone when I'm driving around simply because it would be there.

I've always been trying to find reasonable ways of reducing my electricity consumption. I've had LED light bulbs for almost a decade now. I power down my PC when not in use and only turn on my FreeNAS server when I need it.

The biggest hit to my electric bill is the air conditioning. I'm on the third floor of an apartment building and it faces the east. So my apartment gets cooked by the sun all day long. I had all the windows tinted as dark as I could get and with UVA/B protection and bought solar drapes too. That helped a lot, but the electric bill is still pretty bad in the summer. The landlord also installed newer, larger and more efficient AC units a couple of years ago too. I've added a Nest thermostat and signed up with DTE Energy's Rush Hour program. The Rush Hour program allows DTE to send signals to my thermostat and adjust it automatically when the load on the power grid is high, thus reducing my energy consumption during those times.

I've also set up Seasonal Savings on the Nest to where it will make micro adjustments to the routine to better accommodate my routines while also saving a few bucks by not running the AC so much when I'm not home.

All in all, I've done about all I can think of to reduce my electricity use at home.


HAH! Another apartment dweller on third floor (top for me) facing east. My office, is of course, on this floor and it easily gets to 86F while the kitchen (second floor) is happily sitting at 74F. Second floor gets shielded by the surrounding 3rd floor apartments (top floor) and is spared the heat of the sun.

I too enjoy (not obsessively) thinking about how to reduce power consumption. I was the first to buy the CFL bulbs when they came out - back when they were $20-$30 a bulb. They lasted me FOREVER. Two years ago we went to costco and upgraded everything to LED (leaving our CFLs at our last rental) and haven't had one single bulb go out. Some of those LEDs are hotter than CFLs but take half the power interestingly enough.

Yep AC is our biggest portion of our bill by the largest factor. Very cool to see another Rush Hour savings subscriber! This has saved us hundreds per year on our bill and only inconveniences us slightly (but we are only in our 30s).

Yeah, minus switching my clothes washing to the morning, and trying to charge my batteries during non "rush hour" times - not much more I can do.

Our AC unit in our apartment is heavy duty and very powerful (and new). We're pretty happy with it as it uses half the kWh than houses we've rented in the past (and it's faster). Before this apartment I spent 3 years living in a house without AC (had a swamp cooler). While the $40/mo bills in summer were nice, if it rained or was cloudy, it was pretty miserable.
 
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BigMcGuire

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Jan 10, 2012
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We don’t have AC in the UK. Heating of course. But yes I can imagine if it’s as hot as it is today all the time, you’d not have much choice.
But I think we all do what we can. You have to strike the balance between living in a mud hut and having everything powered on 24/7.

Agreed completely. We use our AC to keep the house around 76F-78F. That's still enough to make me sweat sitting at my desk (I'm not a small guy). Agreed about not going overboard. I won't live in a mud hut with solar panels but at the same time, I'll shut off my desktop at night (and after work), try to wash clothes in morning hours when renewables are at their peak, and lower AC during 4-9pm.

Socal Edison here has quadrupled the solar panels and wind turbines in the area - Southern California can see 40-60% renewable power for all electricity consumption between 10am-4pm (source: CA ISO website).
 
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BigMcGuire

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Jan 10, 2012
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California
Another thing we did when we had the house rewired was having USB sockets installed. Saves all those brick transformers.

Strangely enough, my apartment has USB outlets in the kitchen only ???? If I wasn't renting I'd definitely look into doing that to the office/bedroom. With our 6ft anker cables, that would be really convenient! That's gotta save a lot of money. Those charging bricks aren't cheap.

That said, are you worried about USB C? :p
 
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Apple fanboy

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Feb 21, 2012
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Strangely enough, my apartment has USB outlets in the kitchen only ???? If I wasn't renting I'd definitely look into doing that to the office/bedroom. With our 6ft anker cables, that would be really convenient! That's gotta save a lot of money. Those charging bricks aren't cheap.

That said, are you worried about USB C? :p
Not really. It’s going to be years before that’s your only option. USB A will be around for decades. I’ve often thought it weird if you buy a wireless keyboard or mouse from Apple, it cones with a USB A connection.
 
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