Home brewing antics can now be found at my other blog; http://gettinggrist.blogspot.com/

Thursday, 19 May 2011


" I don't think it's the wife - most of her toys rely on batteries..."

We had the misfortune to receive a massive electricity bill this month. The biggest quarterly bill I’ve ever had in my life. It’s up 40% on the previous quarter (Oct-Jan). Don’t get me wrong, we can afford to pay it, but I want to know where all that juice has gone.

My first thought was the teenage son. With so much tech in his bedroom, he’s got to be pulling the juice big time. All that gear’s got to suck harder than a Dyson. I don’t think it’s the wife - most of her toys rely on batteries.

So, not content with having to find the cash for the bill, I’ve also splashed out and ordered an energy monitor. This unit will track every bit of power we use.

But then it dawned on me. My brewery. My big shiny brewery with its two immersion heater elements. Is it me that’s doing the damage? I did brew five times during the quarter in question...

With the new monitor, we can set weekly targets to try and curb our usage. It was briefly mentioned that if we exceeded the target then there would be no more tech/tv that week. But what if I brew that week and blow the quota? More worryingly, what if the quota is exceeded before I’ve brewed?

Perhaps the energy monitor is going to cause more grief than the bill...


  1. Haha!

    Where do you reccomend to get homebrew/winemaking starter kits from??

    Martin :)

  2. Your best bet is probably Hop & Grape. Go to hopandgrape.com and have a nosey.

  3. Oooops, fingers crossed it's not you thats draining the power... ;)

    @ Martin and Amy - I use the-online-homebrew-company.co.uk and they've always been reliable (good online forum too), never hurts to have a few different sites to pick from. :)

  4. Hi Mark,

    I dont think you brewery can take all the blame.

    If you assume it takes 6kW for 4 hours per batch (and I am sure it doesn't) you would use 6 x 4 = 48 units per batch. At 0.146 per unit that works out at a cost of £7. And 5 time 7 = £35.

    I think you will find it was the cold weather. My experience from renting flats is that electricity consumption goes up wildly during cold spells. Much, much more than you think it should. And I guess the Oct-Jan bill might be an estimate so your actual consumption would be higher during that period too. And if the current bill is done on a reading you will pay for that extra usage in Oct-Jan on this bill. Just a guess of course.

    But I think the brewery is in the clear.


  5. Thanks Michael, that's reassuring. We did have the hot-tub on through most of the winter too. It's nice being in there when it's so cold outside, but I guess maintaining 38deg when its near freezing outside, takes some doing. I'll be really interested to see what happens on the energy meter when we turn that one off.

  6. Thankyou all for your help! :)

    Looking at both sites now! :)

  7. Second attempt at this don't know what happened to the first !

    Anyway any chance of connecting up to the street light or maybe next door...

    Love from hose piped banned Brittany xx