Your Opinion Of KVAR Energy Controller

The guy who sold us a whole house generator, a man whom I trust, is now pushing KVAR EC. He purchased two ($650 each) and has saved 3,487 kwH from March-to-March. (He sent photocopies of his electric bills.) He's offering these units at $450 each, uninstalled.
Is this a good deal, guys? Is it a worthwhile product? Thanks.
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Jack W wrote:

Perhaps you could provide a link with information.
KVAR commonly refers to "reactive" power (kilo-volt-amps reactive). Assuming that is what you are talking about: Industrial power users often have a KVAR meter (in addition to a WattHour meter)and pay a penalty for the reactive power they 'use'. Power factor correction can lower the penalty.
Residential users do not pay a penalty for reactive power. Watt meters do not measure reactive power. Power factor correction for residential offers negligible advantage.
--
bud--

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bud-- wrote:

Right a Watt-Hour meter treats reactive loads like resistive load - the meter can't tell the difference. But the load of a large motor - like an AC compressor - is mostly reactive (the resistance is negligible). If you can vanish the reactive load, you get your AC for free. Supposedly.
Here's their website: http://www.kvarec.com/com_units.htm
There's even a few on Ebay for about $270 http://search.ebay.com/search/search.dll?from=R40&_trksid=m37&satitle=kvar&category0 Here's a video of the thing in operation http://cgi.ebay.com/KVAR-Save-up-to-25-on-your-ELECTRIC-BILL-4-LIFE_W0QQitemZ110255587933QQihZ001QQcategoryZ87087QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
I, for one, would welcome comments from those more knowledgeable than I.
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Wrong.
Wrong.
Nick
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wrote:

And thank you for explaining what is correct. Or does your tiny brain just like to show off your "superior" knowledge of all things?
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I am sorry. Spoon feeding is not available at this time.
Nick
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Keystone had written this in response to http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-Your-Opinion-Of-KVAR-Energy-Controller-309825-.htm :
The keystone state ------------------------------------- snipped-for-privacy@ece.villanova.edu wrote:

The electric meter does not register reactive current, only watts. The KVAR Energy Controller is a capacitor that reduces I squared R line loss. By improving the power factor of the electric distribution system or an individual motor, the KVAR unit reduces excessive reactive current that produces heat, heat is watts, and watts through the meter are reduced. It is easy to demonstrate how a capacitor can slow down the electric meter when it is installed on the load side of the electric company's cash register.
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Keystone wrote:

http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-Your-Opinion-Of-KVAR-Energy-Controller-309825-.htm
Wow - a 7 month old reply. Do you sell this scam?
The KVAR unit slightly reduces the current, which slightly reduces the I squared R loss in wire. A negligible difference in a house.
The metered effect is only for the wire between the utility meter and the KVAR unit (likely installed at the service) - a doubly negligible difference.
Unless the KVAR unit switches capacitors in and out depending on the load, it will draw capacitive reactive current when motors are not running. This increases the current and produces losses just like reactive current from a motor
This is more completely debunked in the original thread.
Power factor correction for a house is a scam.
--
bud--

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snipped-for-privacy@ece.villanova.edu wrote:

Well, armed as I am now with all that knowledge, I can proceed with a good purchase decision.
--
"On this Memorial Day, as our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes
- and I see many of them in the audience here today - our sense of patriotism
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HeyBub wrote:

WH meters measure power to resistive loads.
Reactive power is not consumed and is not measured. With a motor, part of the cycle power flows into the windings to create a magnetic field, part of the cycle the magnetic field collapses and power flows back into the power grid. That creates higher current (and losses) in wires but no mechanical load on a generator (except losses).

Nope. If there was no resistance, the motor would still be supplying mechanical power to the load which is electrical power that will register on a WH meter. At no mechanical load the motor current is largely reactive. When you connect a load the current goes way up because the motor is supplying real power.

Very useful.
The manufacturer sells power factor correction equipment. As stated above, there is no significant advantage for residential customers. The losses (slightly higher current times wire resistance) will be slightly lower. This applies only to the wire from the meter to the point where the unit is connected - the service panel. Doubly negligible.
The manufacturer says "Utility rate structures that account for reactive power consumption, by either a KVA or var demand usage, or a power factor penalty are the ones that can provide this pay-back" Residential users to not pay VAR penalties.
The manufacturer says "If the KVAR EC UNIT is placed at the load, the reactive current only needs to travel through a short distance." That means putting their unit at all your 'large' motors.
The manufacturer says "However, most homes in America today have less than a .76 power factor. This means that approximately 76% of the electricity that is coming through your meter at your home or business that you are paying for is being used effectively; the other 24% that you are still paying for is being wasted by the inductive loads." The "24% that you are still paying for is being wasted" is a *flat out lie*. The manufacturer is either stupid or dishonest. And I would like to see a source for 76% power factor.
Bottom line - for residential users this is a *scam*. For industrial users it may or may not be useful. Given the hype - probably not.            
Note that utilities correct the power factor on their lines. The PF correction capacitors are in racks on power poles, maybe 9 caps in a rack. The caps each have 2 insulators on top and are connected between hot wires.    
--
bud--

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It depends on what you mean by "can't tell the difference". A more accurate statement is that a load like a motor has both reactive and resistive components. Only the resistive component can do actual work, and the standard home power meter only measures the resistive component. So you pay for the useful work done, whether the load is reactive or not - more or less.
If a load *also* has a large reactive component, the line current is higher than it needs to be for just the resistive load. This wastes some energy as heat, and drops the voltage a bit because of larger losses in the wires. And it adds a bit of resistive load because of those losses.
A device that automatically adds capacitance to just cancel the inductive reactance of a load like a motor can get rid of the reactive component. This can help improve voltage enough to be worthwhile in some cases (e.g. an arc welder located at the end of a long run of cable). It may make a slight difference to operating cost due to reducing resistive losses in wiring.

Utter nonsense. At best, when you get rid of the reactive component, you are left with a pure resistive load, which is the part that does the work. You pay for the resistive load - but that's what you pay for when the load has a large reactive component too. The amount you pay for isn't going to change much.
Now, large industrial customers pay a penalty for having reactive load, since it requires larger conductors and larger transformers to supply them. It costs them real money, while not providing useful work inside their plant. So they have a real incentive to reduce reactive power. But houses aren't billed or penalized for it, and it doesn't determine their service size. Unless they're right on the edge of tripping breakers all the time, there's not much benefit for most homeowners to reducing reactive power (the guy with a shop at the end of a long run of cable being a possible exception).
    Dave
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TheGriff had written this in response to http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-Your-Opinion-Of-KVAR-Energy-Controller-309414-.htm : You can spout all the technical you want about how they work or why they work but the proof is in the savings and in my case that was 50% the first month and 30% every month after that compared to last years KWH usage. It paid for itself in less than 3 months. I may be the exception but I live at the end of the powerline and I have to guess that is why my savings are so big.
------------------------------------- HeyBub wrote:

http://search.ebay.com/search/search.dll?from=R40&_trksid=m37&satitle=kvar&category0
http://cgi.ebay.com/KVAR-Save-up-to-25-on-your-ELECTRIC-BILL-4-LIFE_W0QQitemZ110255587933QQihZ001QQcategoryZ87087QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
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On Feb 7, 7:52am, lwgriffin_at_gcgroup snipped-for-privacy@foo.com (TheGriff) wrote:

Hmmm. Does it bother you at all that it was 50% the first month and then 30% every single month thereafter? What exactly was so special about month 1? Did part of the device wear out? I also find it hard to believe that every month is 30% less. Unless you live in a house with a constant load of lightbulbs or similar, everyone I know sees considerable variation just from a month in one year to the same month in other years.
I'd love to see an independent testing authority report on this gizmo. Seems there should be plenty of those available if it saves anywhere near what is claimed. It would be a near miracle device in this day of high energy prices. So, where is the report? Consumer Reports? A university?

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TheGriff wrote:

http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-Your-Opinion-Of-KVAR-Energy-Controller-309414-.htm
It is a miracle. Immediately call the pope to have your house recognized as a blessed site. You can make big money selling your tap water to the pigeons.
Anecdotal evidence proves astrology and dowsing work. People who pay money have a particular incentive to believe.
Find me an electrical engineer that thinks these scams do anything for residential customers. Where are the independent tests (by people who understand what is involved in testing)? Where are the articles in Readers Digest?
--
bud--



> HeyBub wrote:
  Click to see the full signature.
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KVAR works best powering an EdenPure heater.
---MIKE---

>> (44 15' N - Elevation 1580')
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On May 28, 11:37am, Windswept@Home (Jack W) wrote:

HD used to sell something that claimed to save you money by maybe power factor adjustment, well HD no longer sells it because people were not saving anything, it was about 100$ not 450, Your trusted guy should not be so trusted, he just wants to make a buck, does he also sell those hydrogen generators that run cars on water, or magnets you clamp on the gas line. Im suprised he hasnt offered you water spray equipment for your compressor.
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wiremeup had written this in response to http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-Your-Opinion-Of-KVAR-Energy-Controller-309519-.htm : At our local fair, a guy was demonstrating the KVAR energy controllers. For $625 I could get a unit installed save a lot of money on energy. Of course I have a 400 amp service so I would need 2 units so it would be $1250. I have to admit, I was curious so I did some research and surprisingly, there was not a whole lot of real life data available. So, I bought 2 of the units off of ebay and hooked them up to my panels. I put my Fluke meter on my service wires and turned on the breaker. My running load of 7 amps per phase jumped to 12 amps per phase. I am rounding off the amperage, but it was a 6 amp per phase INCREASE in load. That was in September. Since then, I have had two of the highest electric bills I have ever had. Through the winter, I normally average about $275. Two months ago was $365, and last month was $435. This evening, I took the panel covers off, put the meter on and the running load was 7 amps per phase. I turned OFF the KVAR breaker and my load dropped to 2 amps per phase. Needless to say, both KVAR units have been removed permanently. I don't know what the demonstration units that you see on youtube do to drop the amperage on the 120v motors they use, but it looks like a scam to me. For one thing, for a motor as small as the one on the display unit, 5 amps seems like a lot of draw. It is either a incredibly inefficient motor or there is some other load in there that gets turned off when they switch on the KVAR.
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open4energy had written this in response to http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-Your-Opinion-Of-KVAR-Energy-Controller-359159-.htm : Hello readers
A short note to say that almost all power factor correction in a consumer home is a scam.
And there are many others, this is a complete list
http://open4energy.com/forum/home/scam/energy_saving_scams
Scam sites are messing with search results, and you often get their own results when you search "product name scam"
You are assured an open4energy quality result when you search "open4energy product name scam" or "open4energy energy saving scams"
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open4energy wrote:

http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-Your-Opinion-Of-KVAR-Energy-Controller-359159-.htm
Almost all? Which ones aren't scams?

Interesting site with lots of information.
TDD
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