JPS eStore Smart Power Challenge

It is no secret that electricity in Jamaica is expensive.  For me, my JPS bill is among my biggest monthly expenses.  I needed to do something ... other than complain about the bill.  So, I have signed myself up for my self imposed JPS eStore Smart Power Challenge.

Take this unscientific but possibly surprising journey with me.  Using a few 'tools' I picked up at the eStore, my goal is to reduce my electricity consumption from 267 kwh to 214 kwh.  That is 20% in one month!  A little ambitious no doubt, but where's the fun without the ambitious goal.

I've armed myself with three tools.

Digital Energy Timer
Digital Energy Timer (DET)
Digital Energy Timer (DET) - $3,200 - in effect, this smart plug safety cuts the power to any device plugged into it.  The version I have, was designed by Jamaican inventor Jackie Stuart but made in China.

LED Light - $2,600 - this expensive bulb saves up to 20% over florescent (CFL) bulbs.  I'm not going to even get into incandescent; if your still using those, you're way behind.

Smart Power Strip - $6,900 - this device has an outlet for the master and several for the slaves.  So, you plug, for example, your TV into the master, when the TV goes off, the device automatically cuts power to electronics like the DVD player or cable box plugged into the slave outlets.

The DET went straight to the refrigerator.  I didn't need the available digital energy monitor to tell me that the fridge was burning up electricity (pun intended).  The timer can take up to seven different profiles; really I only needed one.  So it took longer to set up than I liked.  Further, I didn't find the instructions very helpful and the worst part is there is no website or customer service number for help.  Urgh!

Nevertheless, I set the timer to cut power to my fridge between 11 pm and 5 am daily.  I am really hoping for big savings and no spoilage.

The single LED bulb went to the kitchen, the light that is on almost all day and much of the night.  Frankly, I don't expect to save a lot here, but boy, the light pretty you see!  Maybe I would have a different result if I was able to replace every bulb in the house.

The JPS eStore smart power strip replaced my Monster Green Power Centre which protects against power spikes for coaxial and phone cables as well in addition to preventing vampire power (it's really fancy, I'll admit).  It's not really a fair trade, but let's see.

Check back in a month and let's see!

In Tech Teaser