How To Determine Your Power NeedsThe following will help determine your electrical needs when using a generator, inverter generator, solar panel, or batteries.
What are running watts?Running watts is the continuous, maximum power a device needs to operate.
What are surge watts?Surge watts is the momentary increase of power needed to start a motor within a device.
What is a ghost load?Also called vampire power, vampire draw, phantom load, or leaking electricity. This refers to the way electric power is consumed by electrical appliances while they are switched off (but are designed to draw some power) or in a standby mode.
Some items turned off but left plugged in may still use some electrical power. One solution could be to plug the items into a power outlet and switch off the power outlet when not in use.
How do I determine the amount of watts needed for a device to operate?
Method 1: Many devices will have a product sticker with the watts needed displayed somewhere on the device. This will be the running watts.
Maximum Output: 900 Watts
Rated Power: 1000W
Method 2: The product manual may contain the watts needed.
Method 3: If the product does not have the watt usage labeled on the device, an electricity usage monitor can be used to determine its watt usage. One popular monitor is the
Kill A Watt Electricity Usage Monitor
. To use, the monitor is plugged into an electrical outlet, then the electric device you're testing is plugged into the monitor. When the device you're testing is turned on the electricity usage monitor will display both the surge watts and the running watts. The surge watts will briefly display when the item powers on.
Also note that many items have several settings such as low, medium and high. Each setting will use a different wattage. You may want to use the electricity usage monitor to test each setting, especially if you typically only use an item, say, on the lowest setting.
How To Calculate Your Wattage Needs
An example wattage calculation worksheet:
Got Your Watts?After you know you power needs, you can then hop on over to choose an inverter generator.
Watts Search TableHow To Use the Search Table Features
1. Click on the column titles to sort the columns ascending or descending.
2. Example Filters:
Item Name: box fan
Item Name: medium
Running Watts: > 900
Surge Watts: <200
Note: Each product detail cannot be guaranteed to be correct. Please make sure to verify product specifications.
|Item Name||Running Watts||Surge Watts|
|Light Bulb - 60 Watt||60||0|
|Light bulb - 75 Watt||75||0|
|Humidifer - 13 Gal.||175||0|
|Window AC - 10,000 BTU||1200||3600|
|Air Conditioner - 7,000 BTU||600||1700|
|Air Conditioner - 12,000 BTU||2800||9750|
|Air Conditioner - 24,000 BTU||4200||10,500|
|Air Conditoner - 32,000 BTU||5000||12,500|
|Clothes Dryer - Electric||5400||6750|
|Microwave Oven - 625 Watts||625||0|
|Microwave Oven - 1000 Watts||1000 - 1500||0|
|Coffee Machine||500 - 1000||0|
|Electric Can Opener||168||0|
|Color TV - 27 In.||500||0|
|LCD TV - on||90 to 250/td>|
|LCD TV - off (in sleep mode)||3||0|
|LED TV - on||20 to 60|
|LED TV - off (in sleep mode)||0.3||0|
|Hair Dryer - 1250 Watts||1250||0|
|Hair Dryer - 1857 Watts||1875||0|
|Computer w/17 in. monitor||800||0|
|Lasko 3720 20" Box Fan - low setting||75||0|
|Lasko 3720 20" Box Fan - medium setting||93||0|
|Lasko 3720 20" Box Fan - high setting||112||0|
|Lasko 3733 Box Fan - low setting||58.6||0|
|Lasko 3733 Box Fan - medium setting||75.7||0|
|Lasko 3733 Box Fan - high setting||102||0|
|Aerospeed BX100 20" 3-Speed Box Fan - low setting||51||0|
|Aerospeed BX100 20" 3-Speed Box Fan - medium setting||65||0|
|Aerospeed BX100 20" 3-Speed Box Fan - high setting||80||0|
|Roof Top AC - 13,500 BTU||1600|
|Roof top AC - 15,000 BTU||1700|
|Electric Fry Pan||1200|
|Electric Water Heater (6 gal.)||1440|
|Satellite Dish & Receiver||200-250|
|Electric Shaver||8 - 12|
|LED Bulb - 40W Equivalent||10||0|
|LED Bulb - 60W Equivalent||13||0|
|LED Bulb - 75W Equivalent||18||0|
|Incandescent 50 Watt||50|
|Incandescent 100 Watt||100|
|Tablet - Recharge||8|
|Smart Phone - Recharge||6|
|Blu Ray DVD Player||15|
|Standard DVD Player||15|
|Furnace: 40,000 BTU|
|Typical RV refrigerator||180||600|
Questions? Comments? Concerns?
Do you see a item missing? An item that should be added? Item information incorrect? Shoot me a message via the Contact Me link below and I'll do my best to update.