Monday, February 16, 2009

Crock pots and energy

Crock pots seem to be coming back. The following contains some commentary:

**from green yahoo:

Save Energy

Crock-Pots, particularly today's models, are energy-sippers compared to most other cooking methods like a traditional oven, stove-top, or toaster oven. Slow cookers use just 100 watts of electricity, which means that if you use it once a week for eight hours at a time, it'll only cost you about TWENTY CENTS a month in electricity! [IPBiz: 0.1kW X 8 hr = 0.8 kW-hour. If 4 weeks per month, then 3.2 kW-hour. NJ is around $0.19/kW-hour, so this would be $0.61.]

Save on Groceries
Slow-cooking is the key to transforming inexpensive, sometimes tough cuts of meat into tender, fall-off-the-fork morsels. Chances are that the least expensive cuts of meat in your butcher's case are perfect for the Crock-Pot. And of course Crock-Pots are perfect for cooking beans and other legumes, among the healthiest and least expensive foods you can eat. Check out the 1,400 slow cooker recipes at

Save Time
Slow-cooking is even faster than fast food! Most Crock-Pot recipes involve only a few minutes of prep time — maybe chopping up a few veggies, stirring together some basic ingredients, and then turning on the slow cooker and forgetting about it. Forgetting about it, that is,until you return home after a hard day's work and you're greeted by that heavenly aroma of a home-cooked meal ready for the table.

Save on Dining Out
While you can cook smaller portions in a Crock-Pot, most of today's models hold anywhere from four to eight quarts. Cook a full pot, and even for a large family you're likely to have more than one meal's worth of a dish. Freeze the leftovers or serve them again later in the week, or package them in small containers for lunches.

Save Your Health
Because very few Crock-Pot recipes call for adding extra oil or using grease, most slow cooking dishes are relatively low in fat. Professional health writers Chet and Josh Day share some particularly healthy — and delectable — slow-cooking recipes.

*****Not everyone agrees on the 100 watts-->
Crock pots run at 120volts with low amps. If we cook with a crock pot that runs at 120v X 1.5amps = 180 watts (This is about medium heat). If we let the crock pot cook for 8 hours, you get 180 X 6 = 1080. [IPBiz: 0.18kW X 8 hour= 1.4 kW-hr]

If you cook that same pot roast in a crock pot for about 6 hours, you’ll be committing about 200 watts, or calculated roughly again, about 1.2 kWh for the same meal.

*****Volt-amps vs watts-->
Since watts is volts times amps, what is VA? VA (or volt-amps) is also volts times amps, the concept however has been extended to AC power. For DC current

VA = Watts (DC current).

In AC if the volts and amps are in phase (for example a resistive load) then the equation is also

VA=Watts (resistive load)

where V is the RMS voltage and A the RMS amperage.

In AC the volts and amps are not always in phase (meaning that the peak of the voltage curve is does not happen at the peak of the current curve). So in AC, if the volts and amps are not precisely in phase you have to calculate the watts by multiplying the volts times the amps at each moment in time and take the average over time. The ratio between the VA (i.e. rms volts time rms amps) and Watts is called the power factor PF.

from wikipedia
If a heater is rated at 1000 watts (1 kilowatt) and that heater is on for one hour then one kilowatt hour is used (equivalent to 3600 kilojoules).
Using a 60 watt light bulb for one hour consumes 0.06 kilowatt hours of electricity. Using a 60 watt light bulb for one thousand hours consumes 60 kilowatt hours of electricity.


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