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Power Meter

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I wanted a way to really determine how much current each channel would actually use. I know there are the ballpark estimates based upon light type and number of lights on a string, etc.

I found this inexpensive Watt Meter called the "Kill A Watt - Watt Meter" Its main purpose is to show you how much money various appliances cost to run. It allows you to display the Amps and Watts used by whatever is connected.

I figure I'll use it to confirm how many Amps my Rope light decorations are drawing, etc.

For about $35 from Amazon, it's well worth it to know a channel isn't overloaded, instead of guessing or estimating.

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NH - Dave wrote:

Excuse the previous post - somehow it got scrambled when i sent it.

Thanks Dave, I didn't see that in the catalog last time I went through it. Thats a help - will work nicely with my clamp-on.

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I just received the Kill-A-Watt meter.

Interesting results!

String of 400 mini lights uses 0.8 Amps.

A string of 20 mini lights uses 0.06 amps. So if I combine twenty of these together, this particular set will use 1.2 amps for 400 lights. Quite a difference!

The amount of current a string of 35 LEDs uses is less than 0.00 amps (negligable).

I have various Candy Cane type decorations. One of them is a lighted Arch which uses 1.6 amps.

My rope light snowflakes use 0.5 amps.

This $25 device is well worth the money. At least I can know for sure what my peak power consumption is, rather than relying on ballpark estimates that can be off as much as 50 percent!

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They also sell clamp on amp meters @ Lowes and Sears. The one I bought from Sears has an extra attachment called a "Line Splitter". This splitter plugs into a normal household receptacle (120 Vac) then you clamp the amp meter around it and plug your lights into the back of the Splitter and you can read how many amps the light or lights are drawing. Both for around $35.00.

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