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Author Topic: Kill A Watt alternative  (Read 469 times)

Richard230

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Kill A Watt alternative
« on: December 28, 2016, 04:41:36 AM »

My second made-in-China Kill A Watt model:P4400.01 has died.  >:( Both devices apparently expired when the charger input hit 11 amps.  So I am seeing a trend here.  Does anyone have a suggestion for a more durable product to measure power draw and kWh that plugs into a 120V wall outlet and functions like a Kill A Watt - but last longer?   ???
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Richard's motorcycle collection:  2014 14.2 kWh Zero S, 2016 BMW R1200RS, 2011 Royal Enfield Bullet 500 Classic, 2009 BMW F650GS, 2005 Triumph T-100 Bonneville, 2002 Yamaha FZ1 (FZS1000N) and a 1978 Honda Kick 'N Go Senior.

BrianTRice

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Re: Kill A Watt alternative
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2016, 04:50:32 AM »

I'm also interested. I've shied away from these products, though I did buy one of those HomeKit-compatible ones that is still sitting around. (I had a need to avoid burning out expensive fuses in my ancient electrical panel, but I managed to solve it another way by permanently rebalancing the house appliance load to not conflict with the Zero charger).

There must be room in the market for one device to be properly rated for an EV.
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Zero: 2016 DSR, 2013 DS
Also: 2012 Suzuki DL-650 V-Strom Adv

Erasmo

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Re: Kill A Watt alternative
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2016, 05:03:26 AM »

Are your charging outlets on their own breakers? If so the easiest way is to mount a din rail meter in the fusebox.

Otherwise an old style turn wheel meter(don't know the correct English term for it)

« Last Edit: December 28, 2016, 05:05:42 AM by Erasmo »
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MrDude_1

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Re: Kill A Watt alternative
« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2016, 12:57:17 AM »

My second made-in-China Kill A Watt model:P4400.01 has died.  >:( Both devices apparently expired when the charger input hit 11 amps.  So I am seeing a trend here.  Does anyone have a suggestion for a more durable product to measure power draw and kWh that plugs into a 120V wall outlet and functions like a Kill A Watt - but last longer?   ???


I can tell you why your kill-a-watt failed and how to fix it if you want... at your own risk.

The kill-a-watt units have two fuses in them.. a normal fuse, and a thermal fuse.  They were never intended for max draw for hours on end, like an EV does.
So they slowly heat up, but not overly hot... just to their max safe temp. This cycles the thermal fuse. after a couple months of doing this, the thermal fuse breaks.

To fix it, you have three options on the fuse...
you can replace it. However it will pop again.
You can replace it with a higher temp one. This works longer... but at the risk of melting the plastic before it goes.
You can just by-pass the thermal fuse with a piece of wire... and never leave it unattended for long.   This is what I did. I no longer use it for charging, just for checking and testing.

This guy has pics and the right idea.. but he used a conventional amperage fuse. not a thermal one... but it has good pics so im linking it. dont do this. http://blog.thelifeofkenneth.com/2012/04/fixing-dead-kill-watt.html

if you want to see all the other EV guys with the same issue, Google kill-a-watt thermal fuse


edit:
youtube video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XdInw4b1k3c
« Last Edit: December 30, 2016, 01:00:33 AM by MrDude_1 »
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Richard230

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Re: Kill A Watt alternative
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2016, 02:54:10 AM »

Thanks McDude, I might give that a try - or just live without knowing what is happening when my bike is charging.   ;)
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Richard's motorcycle collection:  2014 14.2 kWh Zero S, 2016 BMW R1200RS, 2011 Royal Enfield Bullet 500 Classic, 2009 BMW F650GS, 2005 Triumph T-100 Bonneville, 2002 Yamaha FZ1 (FZS1000N) and a 1978 Honda Kick 'N Go Senior.

Erasmo

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Re: Kill A Watt alternative
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2016, 04:11:00 PM »

Perhaps you could install a small heatsink on it?
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Richard230

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Re: Kill A Watt alternative
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2016, 09:00:26 PM »

Perhaps you could install a small heatsink on it?

I can barely handle a soldering iron, much less a heat sink.  I think I will show it to my friend who maintains radio station equipment and see what he has to say.  Maybe he might offer to fix the device for me just for fun.  (Earlier this year he bought a 12-year old Buell Blast and rebuilt the engine and transmission as a relaxing hobby during his vacation and then added it to his collection of 22 motorcycles - so a job like this should be fun too.   ;)  )
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Richard's motorcycle collection:  2014 14.2 kWh Zero S, 2016 BMW R1200RS, 2011 Royal Enfield Bullet 500 Classic, 2009 BMW F650GS, 2005 Triumph T-100 Bonneville, 2002 Yamaha FZ1 (FZS1000N) and a 1978 Honda Kick 'N Go Senior.

jef.jakobs

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Re: Kill A Watt alternative
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2017, 12:10:12 AM »

I'm trying out a HomeKit-compatible Koogeek
Smart Plug. Mainly wanted it so I can schedule when my Zero charges, but it does show current power in Watts and seems to track total power consumption per month. For the scheduling to work you do need an iOS device that's always at home. Description claims 15A,1800W, so I'm hoping it won't die


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