Pool Pump Timers

May 21st, 2011 admin Posted in Misc. No Comments »

The time of year is right for this post. Many people are opening their pools to get them ready for the summer. Depending on were you live they could have been open for a few months already and using up energy  running the pumps and heaters if you have one. In the province of Ontario, Canada, the government run electrical utility has just implemented Peak, Mid Peak and Off Peak billing for electricity rates. The objective that has been stated is they are trying to push consumer electrical usage from peak hours to off peak hours, which means they will be better able to supply electricity during peak times and perhaps build fewer electrical  generation plants. Habits are difficult to change and many expect that the government will reap significant increased revenues through this initiative.

Peak rates are 9.9 cents / KWH while off peak rates are 5.1 cents / KWH, a significant difference. Running the pump fewer hours and at off peak times can make a huge difference in charges to your hydro bill each month.

How Long Should the Pump Run

This initiative has caused many people to rethink how they use electricity and they are examining how they can arrange to use less electricity. Everything from florescent light use, lights on timers and many more initiatives are being examined with the idea of reducing the electricity bills that we are all receiving.

One large consumer of electricity  is the electric pool pump which runs all day along and evening to keep the water circulating and the chemicals properly mixed so that algae does not build up and cause cloudy water or worse green water. Installing a timer between the pump and the electrical supply is one way to cut down on the usage. As with many things there is a balance that must be struck between the usage of electricity in this case and the mixing and distribution of chemicals in the pool to keep it clear. Running the pump for perhaps a few hours in the early morning in off peak hours and again in the evening will make a huge difference in usage. Another approach is to run the pump a few hours over every six hours to reduce usage, while keeping the chemicals mixed. As the pool water heats up and chemicals decline in the pool the chance of algae forming increases. Circulating water is the only thing that reduces the chances of algae forming.

Pool Pump Timers

If your pump is connected to a 110 volt outlet, there are many timers that you can consider. On the other hand if your pump runs on a 220 volt circuit, there are fewer choices to chose from.  Either way this will be a good investment since the prices for pool pump timers  range from $35 to as high as $125 and we noticed from reviews that one consumer wrote, that he saved $157 in one year on his pool alone. this is prior to the introduction of peak rate billing in Ontario. Next year his saving should be even greater.

Installation of Pool Pump Timers

Installation of pool pump timers is pretty easy for most situations. The 110 volt variety just plugs into any outdoor electrical outlet and then you plug your poop pump into it, set the times you want it to be on and you are ready to go. You should mount the timer on a solid support so that is properly protected from the elements and is not lying on the ground.

If you need to connect the timer directly to an electrical circuit, you will need an electrician to make the wiring arrangements for you which will eat into your savings to some degree. Proper connection and grounding is important to avoid danger of electrical shock and possible fire.

A word of caution is required. If you also run a pool heater, it is very important that the pool pump is not shut off white the heater is running. This can be very dangerous potentially causing fire and pipes to melt. If you are unsure of how to make these connections, hire an expert to assist in the installation.

Most reviewers of timers that we have read about have excellent comments about them and most important how much money they are saving!

Alternatives to Installing a Pool Pump Timer

One friend of ours has never used a timer and he religiously turns his pump off at night and back on in the morning. He has been doing this for years to conserve electricity and reduce his electrical bill. While this is a very good initiative and he has to be congratulated for his perseverance, he will still be paying for electricity during the day at the highest rates.  He is now retired and probably will continue as his own timer, turning the pump off during peak times and turning it back on later in the day.

This works for him, however for many people with busy schedules and other priorities a manual approach just will not work for them. Purchasing and installing a timer will be the answer for them to deal with higher rates. Payback on their investment will be less than 6 months easily.

General Electrical Reduction

Although we have focused in this post on pool pump timers, with the rates going up as much as they are, and peak rates being so high, consumers should look at every opportunity to conserve and reduce energy usage. It only puts money in your pocket. Lights, dishwashers, electrical dryers, heaters, furnace, air conditioning and any other devices that consume energy are excellent candidates.

Monitor your electrical usage so that you can assess how much your costs are declining. You may want to keep track of the kwh’s used if rates are fluctuating. Your total bill could be increasing, even if you are reducing the amount of electricity you are using every day! Pay close attention to the amount of time you run your pump and air conditioning. These are heavy users of electricity.

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List of Solar Water Heater Brands and Models

November 16th, 2009 admin Posted in Home Improve, Misc. No Comments »

solarwaterheatersEco-Friendly hot water heating systems have become “kind of a big deal” in the last few decades, as more and more families and corporations are finding ways to help the planet AND save money. Using eco-friendly energy systems is such a win-win-win endeavor once you get past the intial investment spent on the technology.

Today we’re focusing on solar powered hot water heaters, evacuation tubes, and of course tankless water heaters. Tankless water heaters usually still use some kind conventional energy source, but nonetheless, they are much “greener” than the conventional water heaters.

It was the purchase of our Toyota Prius that got me thinking about other ways I can really stick it to the oil and coal companies. The cost of some of these domestic solar water heaters can really get up there, but still I want to look at getting it installed in my house. I’m also not sure how well it would work in Calgary, Alberta. We don’t get as much hot sun as the warmer climates get. I see there are solar water heating systems that can be used for colder climates as well.

Along with all of these interesting questions comes the another one – which brands of solar hot water heating systems actually work as advertised, and which ones DON’T??!! Below is just a small list of solar water heater brands. Keep in mind there are other brands we talk about here, on our Ec0-Friendly Water Heater Mini Site

List of Solar Water Heater Brands

  • Dux
  • Bosch
  • Lowes (whatever brands they carry)
  • Home Depot (whatever brands they carry)
  • Ronas (whatever brands they carry in Canada)
  • Helio-Pak
  • Quality Smith
  • Siddons
  • Solex
  • Sun Volts

Do Want An Active OR; Passive Solar Water Heater?

From what I have read on the Internet, there are two main types of solar water heating systems – the Active system, or the Passive system. What each system does I don’t know, but you can read allot more on the site we’re promoting today. A quick definition that explains the difference between an active system and a passive system, would be this;

Passive solar energy systems use the architectural design, natural materials, or absorptive structures of a building as an energy-saving system. The building itself serves as a solar collector and storage device. An example would be thick-walled stone and adobe dwellings that slowly collect heat during the day and gradually release it at night. Another example of a passive solar energy system is a greenhouse. Passive systems require little or no investment of external equipment.

Active solar energy systems require a solar collector (a device used to store energy) and controls linked to pumps or fans that draw heat from storage as necessary. Active solar systems generally pump a heat-absorbing fluid (air, water, or an antifreeze solution) through a collector.

That quote was found on the Enotes site (thanks!)

Now What About DIY Solar Water Heating Systemsdiybottlesolarwaterheater

So what about it? Lots! That’s what!!! You can find oodles of information on DIY (Do-It-Yourself) solar water heating systems. Just use the magic of Google, Yahoo!, or Bing to find out more. You can even have a VERY basic system made from bottles if you want, which you can see in the inset picture here, or read about it here. Needless to say, it can be done yourself, if you have the time, basic resources, and a little bit of money to seed the project.

For plans, instructions, and diagrams on how to build your own solar water heating system, I would go to this page at builditsolar.com

It looks like a whole bunch of fun making solar systems to heat up your water supply. Kind of feel like Swiss Family Robinson book (or movie). Always thought it would be fun to make a home by myself in the woods. Creating tools, and creating little inventions to make your life better, easier, and more comfortable. Anyway…..I digress.

Some of the kits that I found to be easy to setup would be like the $1000 dollar DIY solar water heating system. This is of course on the same web site. See this $5 dollar solar water heating system too!!

Then there is the commercial brands that you can install yourself, or have a company install for you. A perfect example would be the Helio-Pak Active Solar Water Heater System, which you see even more details on at the Solardirect.com site. We have a seperate page just for the Solar Direct Company as well if you are at all interested in their solar water heating product lists.

No matter how you slice it, “going solar” is very exciting, and worthwhile in so many ways. You can see from the DIY rescources online that the people of our world, with the use of the Internet, are taking it in their own hands and creating solar water heating systems for themselves and not waiting for companies like Lowes, Home Hardware, Home Depot, Ronas, Sears, Wal-mart, or Canadian Tire to produce and sell.

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Sky Caddie G4 Review

April 2nd, 2009 admin Posted in Misc. No Comments »

I will be doing a review for the Sky Caddie G4 in the next few months because I bought one on Ebay for $178 plus a $25 shipping cost. This particular G4 comes new in the box with all of the accessories.

The G4 comes with the following accessories in the box;

  • SkyCaddie SG4
  • Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery (up to 14 hours)
  • AC Battery Charger
  • USB Cable
  • Heavy-Duty Belt Clip
  • User Guide
  • Quick Start Guide

Sky Caddie Membership Options

With the Sky Caddie golf course GPS you can choose different memberships depending on how many different golf courses you play. I’m not a member at any one particular golf course because I travel allot in the summer months and play a wide variety of golf courses. Hence the Sky Caddie is perfect for me.

There are these different membership choices at Sky Caddie;

  • Play 36 (unlimited world wide – $130 every 3 years)
  • Double Eagle (unlimited world wide – $60 a year)
  • Eagle (unlimited for one country – $50 a year)
  • Birdie  (unlimited for one state/province – $30 a year)
  • Register Only (map your own courses and free software updates – $0)

So for golfers like me who travel allot, and love golf enough to invest some hard earned money on their sport,  the Play 36 plan is the way to go. If you are a member at your home town golf course and you don’t travel much at all, then the Register Only option is the best. You can map your own golf course and any other local ones you play.

They have membership plans for any kind of golfer possible. You can search all of the golf courses that Sky Caddie has already mapped into their software here.

The different Sky Caddie models can be viewed here. Have fun!!!!!!!

After I have used my G4 for a few courses I will let you know how it goes with a full and in depth review.

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Have A Great 2009 Shoppers

January 3rd, 2009 admin Posted in Misc. No Comments »

Have a great 2009 everyone. It’s been an exciting here with all of the crazy things going on around the world and in the markets, but it seems that people still want to shop and shop online more than ever.

I thing that online shopping will grow even more if there is recession of some magnitude.

Buyers will be using the Internet more than ever to purchase items and find the lowest discounts possible.

We will continue to update our site as new products and services come along.

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Happy December Shopping Friends

December 2nd, 2007 admin Posted in Misc. No Comments »

Hello Zazbot.com friends and shoppers. As you can see we’ve only just begun getting our information online. We have what you see basically down the sides of the pages, and deep into our supplemental indexes. Read the rest of this entry »

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Zazbot.com Launches

October 22nd, 2007 admin Posted in Misc. No Comments »

Well after a long delay in getting our web development company working on our site, Zazbot.com is finally up and running! We’re very happy we let the web design company talk us into using a content management system to post our new product sites, and links.

This is all new to us, and setting up this shopping site would have been a big hassle if we had not outsourced it. We will be covering all of the department store products you can think of, from home hardware, home furnishings, consumer electronics, men’s clothing, women’s fashions, toys, games, jewellery, automotive, sports, etc. etc.

So with out further delay, we’ll get back to organizing and cataloging the different product sites will be launching before Christmas 2008.

Sincerely,

Carl Tinker

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