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Old 11-14-2012, 08:04 PM   #1
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I realize not all of us cloth diaper purely for economical reasons, but I found this

http://www.csgnetwork.com/elecenergycalcs.html

It's a website that allows you to calculate exactly (down to the penny) how much you pay for electricity for just about any appliance in the house. I honestly don't know how I came across it. I'm a nerd and like to research. At the top of the page, the automatic amount is $0.1099 per KWH (kilowatts pers hour), so change it if your area is different (for example, I pay electricity through my city and my bill says the cost is $0.11230). So I scrolled down to the "laundry" section and calculated the cost of all those pre-rinses in cold, hot washes, and 90min in the dryer -- I have an older machine that seems to take me longer to dry towels and dipes (so this total cost doesn't include price for water...just cost of electricity) and it turns out I pay about $24/month in electricity to wash my diapers ( I wash every other day). I can buy a months worth of disposable diapers (Target brand) for about $24-$25. While I am all about saving the Earth, I find it a little funny that it's really not saving me any money to cloth diaper. Keep in mind that I don't know if this site is referring to appliances that are HE or not. Mine happened to be older top loaders, so I know they use a lot of water (therefore using more electricity to heat that hot water). So I'm sure it could cost less for those with HE machines. I could also line dry (though I live in MN and it'd have to be an indoor sorta line). And I could try washing in warm (though I do sorta like my current routine in hot).

I just think it's kind of funny because all this time I thought I was saving SO MUCH by cloth diapering. I figured "hey, I already own the diapers, so I'm not having to budget extra to go out and by disposables". When all I was really doing was paying that same dollar amount on my electric bill. Haha!

Random food for thought ;-)
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:34 PM   #2
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Re: I realize not all of us cloth diaper purely for economical reasons, but I found t

I haven't seen my energy bill change when we take "time off" compared to when we are using cloth, and we line dried all summer, and now that I'm drying in the dryer for the winter, I'm still not seeing a change... so as cool as that calculator is, it hasn't been my experience.

editing to add:
I don't do a pre-rinse (I rinse the poop diapers as I go), just a wash cycle, and an extra rinse. My old top loader cycles in about 20 minutes. When I dryer dry fully, it takes 90 minutes in my dryer.
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Last edited by RockinLou; 11-14-2012 at 08:45 PM.
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:39 PM   #3
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Interesting. I do three loads of diapers per week for two in cloth, one pre-rinse in cold, warm wash, cold rinse, then one cycle in the dryer. I'm sure I'd pay more for disposables, but cost isn't the big motivator for us.

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Old 11-14-2012, 08:46 PM   #4
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Re: I realize not all of us cloth diaper purely for economical reasons, but I found t

I used that website too when calculating the cost of cloth. I wash twice a week and it costs an extra $16/month for us to CD (we don't pay for water). Honestly, up until I saw that site, I was in the "I haven't noticed an increase" camp. But I had not actually taken the time to calculate it.

This is the main reason I stopped washing every other day. It's not necessary and it costs too much!
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:50 PM   #5
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Re: I realize not all of us cloth diaper purely for economical reasons, but I found t

Quote:
Originally Posted by Melinda29 View Post
I used that website too when calculating the cost of cloth. I wash twice a week and it costs an extra $16/month for us to CD (we don't pay for water). Honestly, up until I saw that site, I was in the "I haven't noticed an increase" camp. But I had not actually taken the time to calculate it.

This is the main reason I stopped washing every other day. It's not necessary and it costs too much!
Isn't it crazy how fast it adds up?!
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:55 PM   #6
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Re: I realize not all of us cloth diaper purely for economical reasons, but I found t

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Originally Posted by mommygraham View Post
Isn't it crazy how fast it adds up?!
Yes! I think for me, too, our electric bill jumps around so much anyway, it would be hard to "notice" a difference. In the summer it can be as low as $90/month and in January last year it was $350. So that $16 isn't very noticeable.
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Old 11-14-2012, 09:04 PM   #7
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Re: I realize not all of us cloth diaper purely for economical reasons, but I found t

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Originally Posted by Melinda29 View Post
Yes! I think for me, too, our electric bill jumps around so much anyway, it would be hard to "notice" a difference. In the summer it can be as low as $90/month and in January last year it was $350. So that $16 isn't very noticeable.
Very true. I also had never taken the time to notice that wastewater costs almost twice as much as the 'regular' water. Think of all those gallons of water getting washed out when cleaning the diapers. THAT adds up too. On our last bill, wastewater alone was $67 for the month. Yikes!
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:51 PM   #8
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Re: I realize not all of us cloth diaper purely for economical reasons, but I found t

It says its costs me just under $17/month to wash and dry 15 loads a month. Not too bad I don't think cloth diapering saves me a ton, but I know it helps that I don't have to worry about running out and needing to budget for it every month. For me, it's more about convenience (I knew I'd be a sucker and buy things I didn't "need" haha). Thanks for the calculator, I'm going to look up everything else now!
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:54 PM   #9
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Re: I realize not all of us cloth diaper purely for economical reasons, but I found t

Yes, I'd just cut back the washing to every 3-4 days. It does motivate me to line dry, though.

It also makes me want to buy flats instead of pf's when I size up for Ivy....

Oh, and I wash kitchen towels and rags with the cd's so I think that helps!
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Old 11-14-2012, 09:32 PM   #10
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Re: I realize not all of us cloth diaper purely for economical reasons, but I found t

Mine came up to $12.49 a month. Which isn't entirely accurate though. I put in 30 loads with hot wash but actually only do 20 (10 loads run through twice) but that wasn't an option. I put 15 loads in the dryer but I do 10 loads again 10 loads.

I redid to get accurate estimates. This is what I came up with.

1 load washed hot wash warm rinse .52 cents

Multiply by 20 washes or ten double cycles $10.40

1 full load dry on high .22

Multiply by 10 loads dried $2.20

My total monthly cost for diaper washing minus water and detergent $12.60

Hanging diapers on the line to dry it seems would only save us $2.20 a month.

This isn't entirely accurate as I have my water set at 140 degrees and my water heater is gas. But I think we are still saving since it costs me for gasoline $4 each trip I make across town. I would have to go more often to pick up sposies.

If I subtract what I would have spent in gas going to get sposies I am $4.60 OOP on diaper laundry each month.

Last edited by qsefthuko; 11-14-2012 at 10:10 PM. Reason: Updating costs missed the first time.
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