Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

I seem to recall that there is a formula for figuring out the electrical draw for each lamp...  I know that I know what it is, but my brain bucket is too full of other stuff right now for me to be able to find it.  (And I'm too lazy to search for it!)

We're finalizing our new house plans and I'm going to have the builder set aside three circuits and XX-number of outlets for the Lava Room.  The builder hasn't designated the electrician for the project yet, so I want to make sure we have enough moola added to the budget before they finalize the plans. 

If I end up displaying say 150 lamps (including the Colossus) and have a Mitsubishi AC unit installed, how much will I draw when I fire them ALL up?

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What are the specs on the a/c unit?


Okay, I'm taking a crack at this.  Keep in mind I'm just a know-it-all hobbyist (I have been referred to as "Cliff Claven").

But some facts.  Amps = Watts divided by Volts. (A = W ÷ V)

150 lamps multiplied by an average 40 Watt bulb equals 6000 Watts, plus 200 Watts for the Colossus equals 6,200 Watts.

I used 120 Volts for convenience, so

6,200W ÷ 120V = 51.66A

51.66A ÷ 3 (circuits desired) = 17.22

Most standard home outlet circuits are rated at 15 amps (if I remember correctly).  So they will have to be beefed-up circuits.  Also circuits should not be used at their max rating consistently.  I don't know what percentage is recommended but I would think a minimum of 20 amp circuits would be required.  I would prefer either more circuits or higher amp circuits.

Also the A/C should probably be on a separate circuit.

Right on the money Keith

My suggestion is make room for expansion (MORE LAMPS!)

Split the walls up info two circuits per wall and use 6

The problem with new electricians, it they are fkg lazy and will use the push-in to make the connection for the wire to the socket.

Common physics tells you that more surface area for an electrical contact=less heat

Less surface area (or loose connection) -generates heat and resistance

a push in connection uses very little surface area for the wire to connect to the socket

MAKE SURE they use the screw connection on the sockets when wiring it

thank you for doing the math, keith. spot-on with the lamps, and 100% agree on putting the AC on a separate circuit.

I ALMOST FORGOT! Please post pics along the way :)

LOL, yeah, the AC will be on it's own circuit...  Thanks for all the helpful info.  I guess now I need to convince hubby that I really do need 6 circuits for that room.  Dang, that's gonna be expennnnnnsive!!

Will do Brad!  
Brad said:

I ALMOST FORGOT! Please post pics along the way :)

electricians usually quote a flat rate for each circuit, provided the box they buy is big enough to add more breakers

smart move on the Mitsubishi A/C

More efficient all the way wround

I do not see why antique forced air units are still installed anywhere (As well asenergy wasting  tank water heaters)

C'Mon USA, get with the rest of the world

and Kelly, when your unpacking and you find those lamps we discussed, let me know

Roger that Claude! And OBTW, the builder is saying that instead of the standard 200 amp service, they think we need to "upgrade" to 400 amp service... personally, I think they just want more money! Furnace, water heater, and stove are gas. Mitsubishi AC unit will be installed after the build. Sooooooo, no. We don't need 400 amp service. Seems like these guys just want to nickel and dime you to the poor house!

Yes I agree

Stick with 200 amp 

Computers, TV's and standard lighting all take less juice than they did a decade before

AC units as well

try to go with on demand gas water heater, you wont be disappointed, and they are more effcient

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