The Christmas Electricity Breakdown You Never Knew You Needed

POSTED ON December 20, 2018 BY

Merry Christmas from Electricity Monster

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First off all, Merry Christmas from everyone here at Electricity Monster.

We hope you’ve had a great year so far and that 2019 will be even better for you.

This is a time for family, friends, food and fun.

Whether you’re considering who to pick for the family backyard cricket game or fussing around the BBQ there are a few things you do every year.

It’s part of what makes Christmas such an institution, these yearly rituals.

It’s also about time we took a good hard look at everything at a few Christmas traditions, and how these impact your energy usage.

In general operational data from the National Energy Market suggests electricity usage drops significantly on Christmas day.

However, we’re going to look at how a few specific elements of yuletide celebration.

So let’s get started.

Christmas Lights

Christmas Lights

First of all let’s look at Christmas lights. 

Pop quiz, who invented the lightbulb? Thomas Edison of course, every kid knows that.

What about who invented Christmas lights? It was one of Thomas Edison’s mates.

Christmas lights, as we know them, a series of smaller light bulbs strung together, were developed by Edward H. Johnson.

In 1882 Johnson decided that a mere Christmas tree wasn’t enough.

He took the time to wire together, by hand, about 80 light bulbs of red, blue and white, and wrap them around his tree.

Not only was this the first illuminated Christmas tree, but it was also way better than the one you bought at Target because it also revolved.

Nowadays nearly everyone has some Christmas lights kicking about in the basement.

Everyone knows about the struggles of untangling them every year, but not everyone knows about what they cost to run.

Your average incandescent Christmas lights will use about 40 watts worth of power per every 100 lights.

If we assume you keep the lights on your tree on for about five hours every night for the month of December this energy usage might add about $34 to your power bill.

That’s actually quite a lot, that’s an entire present you won’t be able to buy.

Here’s the trick, invest in some LED Christmas lights.

Whereas incandescent bulbs consume about 40W per 100 lights, LED bulbs will use about 1.2 to 2W per 100 bulbs.

With this sort of usage, you might only add a $1 to your power bill.

You could buy a couple extra six packs with the savings!

Read More: 5 energy myths that refuse to die

Christmas Toys

Here’s a fun fact.

Battery purchases skyrocket during the Christmas season.

In fact, 40% of all batteries that are purchased, are purchased over the holidays.

When you think about how many toys they need to be used in, it really makes sense.

The average battery has a voltage of about 1.5 volts, and a current of about 2.4 amps, which adds up to about 3.6 watts in terms of energy.

Each year in Australia about 345 million batteries are purchased, the holiday period accounts for about 138 million of them

That’s over 400 million watts of energy getting used in battery powered Christmas toys every year.

Many of these batteries end up in discarded in landfills and considering some of the materials used in battery manufacturing this can be dangerous.

However, there have been some interesting developments in battery technology recently.

Or rather lack-of-battery technology.

Researchers in the United States have been working on some very interesting new ways to power children’s toys.

There are quite a few big words coming, so we’ll take this slowly.

They’ve been experimenting using what’s called “Triboelectric nanogenerators”

Triboelectric nanogenerators or TENGs, work using static electricity.

They collect up static electricity generated from the sort of friction a children’s toy might experience.

They then store it and then amplify it so that it can power the toys.

It’s a little bit of a way off, but it’s an interesting thing to think about.

Read More: Moving home next year? Avoid making these mistakes

Christmas Lunch

Christmas Lunch

Do you do turkey or do you do chicken?

Perhaps you’re partial to roasting a few prawns on the barbie to have on the side.

Most of our Christmas traditions here in Australia can actually be traced way back to Victorian England.

And Christmas dinner (or lunch) is one of them.

You might find this a bit a surprise, but before the 1800s rolled around, people barely celebrated Christmas.

In fact, it wasn’t even a business holiday in some places.

Things started to change once Prince Albert married the long-serving Queen Victoria.

So hat tree you’ve got in the corner of the lounge? You might think that they’ve always been tradition.

However, it wasn’t until a drawing circulated of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert celebrating Christmas around a Christmas tree that they became popular.

Suddenly they were all the rage! Everyone wanted a Christmas tree.

So you might not be surprised to learn that the same goes for your Christmas lunch.

A feast around that time of year had been popular since the Middle Ages.

While the roast meat only really took off in the Victorian era.

Turkey and chicken were initially most popular among the wealthy, but the size of the bird made it a viable indulgence for middle-class families as well.

That is if you decide to roast it.

Roasting a turkey in an oven can use over 400 watts of energy per hour.

If it takes four hours to cook your turkey, you might use 1.6 kilowatts of energy to cook it.

However, if you decide to cook your turkey or chicken on the barbecue you’d be using gas which is usually cheaper than electricity.

Maybe the barbie is the better option.

Read More: Not too sure about what’s on your power bill? Our infographic can help!

Get yourself a present that lasts all year

Each Christmas, you think about those most important to you, your family, and your friends.

However, remember that while Christmas comes but once a year you have to take care of yourself every day.

Think about giving Electricity Monster a call.

Each year the price of power in Australia seems to get more and more outrageous.

In fact, if you live in Victoria you’ll be getting a price hike in January!

The best way to fight these price hikes is to speak to a professional.

The team at Electricity Monster has helped over 35,000 Australians find a great rate on their residential and business electricity.

Likewise, we’d love to add you to the list.

Give us a call today, we might have you on a sharper rate in as little as fifteen minutes..

Finally have a very Merry Christmas, from everyone at Electricity Monster.

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* We do not compare all energy providers