Monday, December 05, 2005

Which is cheaper heat, electricity or a candle?

Here's a physics question that I don't have time to solve right now. Which is cheaper for heating a room, electricity or candles?

4 comments:

steve said...

well, according to the 5th grade textbook i'm teaching with, a heater can give off much more heat than a candle, even though the candle is at a higher temperature

hamster_grrl said...

Do an experiment:

Buy whatever your last power bill was worth of candles and then see if they heat the apartment for a month. Then you'll know.


(My money's on the electricity, though. You would need LOTS of candles to heat your place as well as the central heat does)

Jeff S. said...

References I've found, like on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Candle , say a candle makes about 40 Watts of heat. In that case, a 10-hour votive may make 0.5 kWh for $0.50, while the power company charges $0.05 for the same energy.

Seems like electricity wins in the cost department, not to mention that it would take 38 candles to equal a 1500 W heater.

Nate said...

I got similar numbers, Jeff. Electricity wins in the economics department.