Scam Opinion by Open4Energy
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The "Go4Green EnergySmart plug-in unit claims to save on rising electricity bills by reducing the distribution losses within motors in the home. Further, and possibly of greater concern is the fact that the reseller DealMe is promoting this product as having been tested and Approved for Australian homes.
In fairness to DealMe, we state for the record that the 'deal' is listed as closed. But in fairness to the truth we wonder why they have not taken the product off their site and apologized to any consumers who they facilitated being misled.
Copy of the email sent to DealMe - then their response - you decide!
Dear Deals Direct,
Please be advised that this product is a scam. I am a qualified electronic engineer with 40+ years' experience, and I can tell you beyond all doubt there is no way that plugging a device into a power outlet can significantly reduce the energy usage in a home. At the very margin an improvement in power factor will reduce wiring losses. I did a calculation a couple of years ago on exactly that topic, and concluded that savings would be at the very most 1.6% of the power consumed by a given motor (not a whole house). The calculation is reproduced below my signature (I did it for a contact in the USA).
I am extremely disappointed in Deals Direct. While some of the product I have bought from you have not been of the very best quality, that's something I can live with. A scam product is a whole different matter. I will be charitable, and assume you lack the technical capability to make an evaluation yourselves. I will also suggest you withdraw it from sale immediately, for the sake of your reputation.
Please also see the last paragraph here. This article is the most read page on the topic on the whole Internet. See also this. And this authoritative paper by the United States National Institute of Standards and Technology.
David Stonier-Gibson, B. App. Sc
Copy of email response from DealMe - you decide!
Thanks for your email and very valuable comments.
I'll pass the details of your email onto our Account Manager who deals with this product.
Thank you again for your feedback.
This will definitely assist us to improve our site and Deals on offer in future.
In my opinion, this was a tardy reply to a well presented problem. I do hope that DealMe will soon have this nasty product page removed from their site. In our recent 5 part expose' of energy scams, the whole point of the piece titled feeding on consumer energy scams was to identify the slew of companies looking to make a profit out of green energy hype.
On the business ethics; this worship of money is the root of all evil!
It is important that we are clear on the distinction between a product that scams consumers by exaggerated claims of electricity saving through pfc and a product that scams consumers by claiming it does pfc when it does not. We do not understand how this product could carry out pfc, but even if it could it would not save a consumer money!
There is truth in the fact that our homes have devices which consume electricity at lower power factors. As an example we know that "CFL light bulbs" have a Power factor of between 55% and 70%, while incandescent light bulbs have a power factor of 100%. All electric motors, including fridges, air conditioners, fans and computers generate reactive power which will affect their power factor.
Based on the above information it could sound logical that a pfc technology would save money for a home owner. But this is NOT a correct conclusion at all. Improving a consumers power factor will mostly save a "negligible" amount of electricity. I have correct my earlier opinion of "NO saving" to "usually negligible" thanks to an informative discussion with the founder of V-Blox Mr David Mulvaney.
Power factor and power factor correction are indeed subjects that we should be aware of, but it is "near fraud" when excessively marketed to home owners as a way to save money on their electricity bill.
We have an overview on "Power Factor"and the definitions for real power, apparent power and reactive power for those who would like to understand more of the technical details on this topic.
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