How much does it cost to run an electric blanket?

by | Sep 16, 2008 08:00 PM ET
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Marshall Brain

Hi, I'm Marshall Brain with today's question - How much does it cost to run an electric blanket? The electric company bills its customers by the kilowatt-hour. When you turn on something that consumes 1,000 watts for one hour, it consumes 1 kilowatt-hour of electricity, or if you turn on something that consumes 100 watts for 10 hours, it consumes 1 kilowatt-hour of electricity. The rate you pay for a kilowatt-hour varies depending on where you live. You might pay about 10 cents per kilowatt-hour.

An electric blanket might consume 200 watts, depending on the setting, so if you leave it on for 10 hours, it consumes 2 kilowatt-hours. That would cost about 20 cents to run it for a night at its highest setting. Most electric blankets cycle on and off, so they're only on about half the time or less, depending on the setting. It's probably safe to say that a typical electric blanket, set on a normal setting, uses about a dime's worth of electricity per night.

Compared to the cost of heating up the whole house, that dime can save a lot of money. Do you have any ideas or suggestions for this podcast? If so, please send me an email at Podcast@HowStuffWorks.com.

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