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-   -   Black & Decker Power Monitor (https://ecorenovator.org/forum/showthread.php?t=1577)

bennelson 05-25-11 02:38 PM

Black & Decker Power Monitor
 
Hey folks,

Recently, somebody e-mailed me a deal on a Black & Decker Power Meter (model # EM100B ) for a very good price - $20.

I ordered it and just finally got my order today!

This is a "whole house" meter, similar to a TED, but this one has a "reader" that connects on your power meter. The downside is that you MUST have a compatible power meter for this thing to work.

For $20, I could always give it to friends or family if it didn't work at my house! :thumbup:

I'll get it hooked up soon and report in for you!

-Ben

bennelson 05-25-11 05:53 PM

Here's a couple of photos for you.

http://gallery.me.com/benhdvideoguy/...13063580620001

http://gallery.me.com/benhdvideoguy/...13063580650001

http://gallery.me.com/benhdvideoguy/...13063580680001

The device is a remote display receiver screen that you put in your house and see the data on. The other thing is the sending unit. It's an infrared-reciever and data transmitter that mounts on your power meter with a metal band (pipe clamp) that you snug down around the clear cover of your meter.

You have to make the little IR receiver on the band line up with an IR transmitter on the power meter. Then it picks up the signal, and sends data you your device in the house.

The display shows power usage in $/hour or KW. Unfortunately, it's only one decimal point after the KW, so resolution is a crumby 100 watts!

That might be fine for somebody using thousands of watts, but for those of us trying to keep it under ONE KW, that lack of resolution will be frustrating.

I ran my microwave full-tilt, and compared the output data of the Black & Decker with the TED. They were within 10% of each other.

The "update" rate on the Black & Decker is 30 seconds, so it's hard to use to measure something that turns on and off quickly or only intermittently.

Also, there is no computer connection or display - the handheld/desktop/wall-hanging unit is all you get.

Pretty easy to use, not bad to set up, and the price was very good.

What amazes me is that houses don't just COME with some basic device like this. What house DOESN'T have a nice temperature display for the heat or air-conditioning?

Every house should have some basic level of electrical energy monitoring. This is exactly that.

Xringer 05-26-11 11:36 AM

Wow! $20 that's amazing!
 
I looked at that model, but ended up spending big bucks on monitors with current probes.
My wireless Efergy unit died and I'm using the just the basic TED now.

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...r/NCL/z002.jpg

I can read the meter manually, but wanted to monitor power use of the Sanyo ASHP.

You seem to have gotten a very good deal. :thumbup:

bennelson 05-26-11 12:43 PM

I like the TED a lot.

My meter really can't be read manually - it's too newfangled.

It's nice just to have a basic display in the kitchen showing how much power is used.

Xringer 05-26-11 01:47 PM

I'm lucky, my LCD meter can be read in 1-watt hour increments.
http://www.gridinsight.com/files/cac...cdbb353de1.jpg

http://ecorenovator.org/forum/conser...-yourself.html

I really don't like the TED much. It's comms are done kinda like the X-10 stuff,
but the TED can't stand any light dimmers or CFLs on it's lines.
The transmitter sends out updates 1-per-second, but very few make it
upstairs to the display unit, when dimmers or CFLs are on.. :mad:
It would work a lot better if we were using only incandescent lamps..

I've read about people trying to get their TEDs to work in the same room
where they have their PC, so the USB link can be used..
Many times, that's not possible, unless they can run in a dedicated AC line.

My first idea was to wire the transmitter and the TED into the same un-used
breaker in the breaker-box and then run the USB signal upstairs
using network cable. I have the USB-CAT5 converters, I just need to
make or buy a long CAT5 cable and install it.

I think it's time for a wifi connected TED. Then Laptops and portable
wifi tablets, like the Nook Color could be used.

http://dwebcrm.com/live/upload/3/ted...0-software.jpg

Ryland 05-27-11 01:46 AM

I have one of the Black and Decker meters like Ben just picked up, only I paid the full $100 for it, used it a few times before becoming frustrated with how poorly it fit the meter it was reading, it would work for an hour or two at most, fiddle with it have it work for a while longer, so now it sits on my desk.

bennelson 05-27-11 10:00 AM

Yeah, a big part of why I bought it was just that it was so inexpensive. Even if it didn't work, no big loss.

I imagine that most folks on this forum qualify as "Advanced" energy users, who would want to know more information than the B&D unit provides.

Also, the TED desktop unit is backlit, and the Black & Decker isn't. It's much easier to read the TED display because of that.

Xringer 05-27-11 10:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bennelson (Post 13736)
Also, the TED desktop unit is backlit, and the Back & Decker isn't. It's much easier to read the TED display because of that.

I've got the bottom-of-the-line TED and mine does not have a back-light.
Under most indoor lighting conditions, it's almost impossible to read.
If it's after the sun starts going down, I just use an LED flashlight,
that I store next to the TED.

I wonder if the LCD (on mine) has any light-inlet for mounting an LED??
Have crack the case. :D

tasdbois 05-27-11 01:06 PM

I've had this monitor for a couple weeks now and it's working flawlesly, reading the optical port on top of my meter. I got it for $30 incl shipping on ebay. In combination with a kill-a-watt it's a good tool to see where your energy is going. I like it a lot to evaluate anything that is not plugged into an accessible socket (water tank, baseboards, heat pum, dish washer) as well as go get a general whole house instantaneous usage view and a convinient way to see daily usage without having to walk to the meter.

AC_Hacker 06-08-11 06:28 PM

I just got mine today...
 
2 Attachment(s)
I just got mine today. Around $24 on ebay.

Mounting the sensor was a snap, but in order to line the sensor up with the infra-red LED, I had to put a ceramic spacer under the sensor assembly.


After putting in the batteries, it synched up without problem.


The monitor unit also was very straight forward to synchronize.

-AC_Hacker


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