It is important to understand the differences between kilowatts (kW) and kilowatt-hours (kWh) because of their impact on your energy consumption and your bill. Although there are many differences between kW and kWh, the main difference between kW and kWh is that kW measures power while kWh measures energy.
What are kW?
kW means kilowatt and equal to one thousand watts. This unit is used to express the energy generated by power motors and the energy of electrical devices such as motors, machines, heaters, and other tools. It is also used to express the electromagnetic power output of radio and television transmitters. One kW is equal to 1.34 horsepower. A small electric heater containing a heating element consumes about 1 kW.
What is kWh?
kWh is the symbol for kilowatt-hours. It is a unit of energy equivalent to one kilowatt of energy consumed for one hour. One kWh is equal to 1,000 watt-hours or 3.6 megajoules. It can be understood as if the energy is used at constant power over a period of time, the total energy in kWh is the product of the power in kilowatts and the time in hours. It is the billing unit commonly used for energy transmitted to consumers by electric companies.
- kW is a measure of power, while kWh is a measure of energy.
- According to energy management theory, kW is called “demand” and kWh is called “use” or “consumption.”
- Lower wattage appliances use a few watts of power like a light bulb. Heavy engines, heaters, etc. they use kWh.
- kWh is a larger unit than kW. One kWh is equal to 1,000 watt-hours.
- Electricity bills are calculated in kWh.
- kWh calculates the amount of energy during a specific period of time, while kW calculates the energy rates at a certain time.