Expect warmer buildings with electric power price increase

If you have decent insulation and a newer AC/heater unit, it is cheaper to leave it running all the time. When I lived in a 12 ping taofang with a super strong (way too strong for the space), brand new AC/heater unit, my bill was less than 200/month if I left it running at 30 degrees in the winter and 23 in the summer. It was 600-900/month if I only ran it when I was home (and I worked in a public school, so I wasn’t home from 7:30am til 5:15 pm, aka “peak time”). Tried this in a larger brand new apartment that also had 5 meter high ceilings and it was a difference of 1000 or so per month vs 4000 or more. But my current living situation would probably quadruple my bill if I left the AC on all the time, as the insulation sucks and the units are old, yellowed, and noisy.

I think that is an urban myth. It sounds reasonable, but there is no science behind that.

Huh. I just had a look at a few articles for this (yay procrastination!), and, well, answers vary. A Good Housekeeping site says, nope, “running all day at a less powerful speed requires more energy overall”. Other sites like American Home Water & Air (hm, bit of a conflict of interest there) and How Stuff Works say yes, it’s more efficient to keep it on, but turn it to a higher temperature while you’re out. Both point out the virtues of dehumidifying.

All the articles seem to assume houses rather than the apartments many of us live in, with lines from How Stuff Works like “it could take several hours to cool off your house”.

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Yeah, rate of heat exchange should be the same either way over long periods of time. But in the short term it takes more energy to max out the AC and quickly cool the place down, right?

This is one reason I sometimes keep it running on a light setting when I’m out during the hottest days. Nice to come home to a cool house that day

What I found when I left it running more often is the bill went up a bit, but not a lot

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All these years I’ve been turning a/c off and on depending on what room I’m in. This debate about efficiency never even occurred to me. Starting this summer - or based on the forecast, maybe even later this week - I may instead just keep the a/c on, but adjust the temperature up and down accordingly.

Complicating everything of course is the standard house cat’s hatred of any closed door. It must be meowed at and opened.

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You could install cat flaps on all the doors?

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I have to keep the door to the spase room and my computer room closed, as they contain plastic bags, and one of my cats insanely LOVES to eat plastic bags.


There are a lot of factors at play in whether or not what I said above is efficient. As you said, dehumidifying is an important factor. (Taiwan’s hotels are stupid AF on this front, opening the windows as soon as they shut off the AC, causing condensation and therefore insta-mold). But also keep in mind central air systems don’t work the same as individual unit ACs. You see a lot of dance/workout studios in the US with ACs like the ones in TW because they cool off a room FAST, even though the building always has an HVAC system. But the efficiency is based on room size vs. unit capacity and such. I know someone who used some insanely high (industrial voltage) AC set up in a converted shipping container. The container goes from hot oven to wonderfully cool in less than a minute and supposedly uses less energy to do so, but it uses high voltage, so now you have to worry about someone getting electrocuted if they start poking around the wires.

The only way to know if it works for you is to do a carefully controlled experiment on your space, controlling for ambient air temperature, sunshine, neighbors’ AC use, etc.

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I’ve got this silly app from Taipower on my phone. Millions of options that I ignore. I don’t suppose there’s something in there that gives a better breakdown of power consumption, e.g. by week or day or even hour? Or would I be stuck with going out to look at the meter a few times a day? (I think I know where the meter is …)

The type of ac also makes a huge difference. When we first bought our place and didn’t have any spare money, we will installed regular Kolin ones. After a few years of high power bills (over 10k for 2 months in summer once) we switched to split Daikin units for the living area and master, and split Hitachi for the kids’ bedrooms. They are all energy star and have the highest energy rating, and elec bills are a fraction (2-3k)


Taiwan exists on exports. exports exist on inudstry. industry exists on cheap energy. Taiwan has done precious little in 50 years to take energy security seriously. 11% is a blessing, quite frankly. but if we are being real, they say 11, people cry, they settle on 5~8 and everyone moves forward. this is how dysfunctional society roles :sunglasses:

it is a cry baby game meanwhile everyone dies from organ disease, lung failure and cancers. great leap forward!

ps. this thick blooded canadian survived in polluted pockets of humid Pingtung and still remains in the south without AC. plan better…they still air condition the open road ways, we are not at emergency level yet. despite our hardest efforts to try and sabotage our future.

Furthermore, despite the low costs for electricity and water, many a Taiwanese manufacturer moved production elsewhere, so this form of subsidy only supprts the less competitive manufacturers.
hurting people’s pockets is one of the best way to change them. The proce hike, though painful, will also push people to improve their energy consumption and waste less.

Labor is the biggest cost in Taiwan. both due to inefficiency and an incapable society. this is why tech and very niche other products are the only game here, they automated it and hire the best available. other industries are fucked because locals are lazy, slow, dumb and cannot complete tasks without constant supervision. enter foreign labor, they can. but because the companies tend to be so inefficient, or the costs are so high to become efficient…we watch the slow death that is becoming an obvious monopoly and/or difference in wealth going forward. the issue has many causes, and strangely all sides of the argument are doing precious little to tackle it. thus, tech will remain taiwans golden egg. sadly. taiwan has so much potential and so little drive.

I feel the same in many aspects. Why is this you think?

Why don’t they push for time based pricing scheme? If the high users only use power at night, where there’s an excess capacity, the price would be very low. Then it would be very high during the day.

There are systems that can be implemented to use power to make cold at night then use it during the day.

I feel Taiwan is geographically golden. climatically golden. rich enough to do anything (including educate).

I feel Taiwan.dropped the ball getting rich, for good reasons to be fair. In conversation I mention a lost generation. as in an entire generation "abandoned " by their parents while they go make Taiwan rich. this being.left with relatives and friends.to.raise a person has shown very clear and.obvious mental health issues, which tend to be ignored even today. this has evolved now into a 3rd (ish) generation of.lost lazy entitled people that were told: Test scores! No love. Save face, conform. this is leading to an ever evolving society of lazy entitled folks with mild through to extreme mental illness. ironically the media, being these later generations tend to jot really report on the issue in a preventative sense, as that is how the culture has evolved to think. Religion has a place in causing a paranoia on “jinxing” things here too, which is no small part in why people prefer to avoid actually communicating reality in an effort to prevent future problems. rather, just allow them and be part of fixing them. this is seen across the board in religion, lifestyle, work and so on.

that is what I am saying. we are squandering our potential in Taiwan by doing the "dont work too hard"bullshit multiplied by the “dont talk about your shit” multiplied by “it’s fine, fix it after its broke” mentality.

In this sense, Taiwan is a sinking.ship. unless/until the diligent folks start prevailing. they exist, but the numbers seem to be less than optimal. we only need so many factory drones. what happens when they are replaced by machines that dont complain and actually finish their jobs without whining and tears.

Hard realities. for some.

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Damn. Just last week I wrote to the KMRT complaining about the lack of AC on the platforms during non-peak hours. I’m guessing they’re not going to do anything about it.