BUYERS GUIDE - GPU mining and its electrical needs!


I’ve been reading on a lot of different forums (prior to TheBitcoin.Pub) and even on our own forum about people not knowing the electrical needs of their GPU mining rigs. I’m here to tell you that @peter and I have spent a lot of time researching and implementing what it takes to get multiple rigs up and running. We have contacted electricians and even consulted with electrical engineers. This information is GOLD please stick with me as I explain.


Many of you have probably googled how to build a GPU mining rig and watched YouTube videos on it but the one thing that they never tell you is what the strain on your electrical infrastructure is going to be. Most of you are probably running GPU mining rigs, or plan to, at your house. Let me share with you what Peter and I have learned. When Peter and I first decided we were going to build multiple GPU mining rigs we consulted with an electrician and an electrical engineer to let them know what our electrical demand was going to be. We had an electrician come to Peter’s house and check out the wiring and the electrical panel. Here is what we learned:

  • Electrical Wiring - Most houses are build using 14 AWG electrical wiring. 14 AWG electrical wiring is designed to handle electrical loads up to 15 amps per building codes. Why? Any amperage over that will cause the shield around the wires to melt due to heat. If you are using a 1500watt PSU, it is probably rated for a 15amp input. So you are probably thinking, “I’m good”, no. That maximum load on the wires isn’t made to handle that load 24/7. Typically, electrical engineers would recommend only going to about 80% of the full load. Also, lets say you want to run multiple GPU mining rigs in the same room, you MUST verify that all the outlets in the room are ran in parallel and not in series. Layman’s terms, each outlet directly feeds back to the breaker box. Otherwise your rigs will be running on the same circuit and you will overload the wiring and the breaker. Consult with a certified electrician about installing 12 AWG electrical wiring on 20 amp breakers if you are going to build more than one GPU rig.

  • Extension cords - PLEASE DON’T USE EXTENSION CORDS! Read the warning labels on the extension cords. They are not made to handle the continuous load that the GPU mining rigs demand. Extension cords are designed for temporary use only. I have seen extension cords overload or malfunction and pop (Christmas 2016).


Now that you have invested into the electrical infrastructure, lets talk about projecting electrical costs. There are many ways to modify the GPUs to use less power and not decrease hashrate. That will be covered later. For now, we are going to say that you are a complete newb and are running factory settings with no custom overclocks. You are going to need to calculate how many kilowatt-hours (kWh) you will be using per day. I’m going to use the example of a 1500watt PSU running at full capacity for 24 hours.

1500watts x 24 hours/day = 36,000 watt-hours/day
36,000watts / 1000 watts/kW = 36 kWh/day

Now go to your electrical bill and find out what your electric company charges you per kWh. For this example I’m going to use $0.12/kWh.

36 kWh/day x $0.12/kWh = $4.32/day

So assuming your GPU mining rig is running at it’s full 1500watt capacity (which it won’t be), you will be spending $4.32/day in electrical costs. Before you get discouraged by this and think, “Well damn that’s $129.60 per month. I’m not going to mine.” Let me say this, you are essentially exchanging electrical costs for bitcoin using the method of dollar cost averaging. Think about it, you are purchasing $129.60 worth of bitcoin per month through mining plus earnings and you don’t even have to pay a fee for purchasing it!

I hope this has been helpful for all of you in planning for setting up your own mining rigs. If you have any questions PLEASE reply below and I will answer them as best I can. Tweet this out, share it with your friends, this is important!


This is very helpful. We do enjoy giving away all our secrets… :slight_smile:


This post is spot on! Great work


Thanks for sharing, super helpful!


The heat from my GPUs is keeping the man cave nice and toasty. if I could find a way to do it, I’d love to heat the whole house using miners.


You could place the mining rig in a downstairs central location of your house. Just have to deal with the noise.


what you want is a kill a watt, you can get one on amazon or most places online and reads the electricity running through it.


We use the kill-a-watt like @coolrey3 linked. They work just fine and you can program your cost per kW/H into it.


@PaulAnthony cant go wrong with one, its what i use. Not an electrician by trade though so i cant speak to whether its better or not.

@ImaginaryPi Thanks for the write up! just started lurking more and when i read your post, immediately disconnected my extension cord running to my heater, i mean my d3 (T_T)

@peter been lurking on ur channel and subbed a couple weeks ago after watching a few live streams. Thanks for sharing your knowledge im jumping in to the crypto lifestyle head first and on day 40 of b90x. Save me a seat on the rocket cause were talking conspiracies on the moon when we get there!


Check out BiteSizeMining on YouTube as well. That’s where I post videos and discuss different mining topics. If you have anything specific you would like for me to cover, just let me know


nice! i wasnt aware of that channel yet. Id love to see some info on what to do for those of us that got burned on these D3’s. should we hold some alts that may make a moon mission soon or just go by say and chase the roi that is dwindling?

Also after the nicehash hack whats the best alternative? zpool or winminer or again focus on alts to hold?

Thanks again and ill be sure to check out the channel!

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Have any of you had experience hiring an electrician to come out and audit your electric setup and/or get new power run for your setup? I am building my first rig in the next month or so, but am wanting to eventually scale to having 3-4 rigs running. I’m just wondering what a good gut-check range of price might be for the electric work that might need to be done.


How many GPUs do you want running per rig?

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Yes. Be sure to tell them what your anticipated load is going to be. For instance:

“I’m planning on running 3 1500w power supplies 24 hours a day.”

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@iGMB, I will be running either or 6 or 8 in my first rig. It will depend on how much the new Nvidia cards cost when they come out. I’ll probably do something similar for the next rigs as well.

@ImaginaryPi, thanks for the help. I guess I need to nail down the specs of my new cards and get some rough calculations for the future rigs to determine what I’ll need.


If you want to just be conservative as the Electrician doesn’t really care if he is running 20A or 30A circuits and the cost is in most cases negligible as their labor is way more than the price of the circuit. Just have them run 30A.

The cost of the breaker and wire are slightly higher but way less than the labor. So by installing say 2 x 30A circuits will more than likely be cheaper than 3 x 20A, but you would have the same power availability.


Thanks @Nekko! That’s great advice. I will definitely keep that in mind. :beers:

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Awesome! If it is only going to be a rig or two with 6-8 GPUs you might be ok without calling an electrician. Most people can have about 8 cards safely running off a circuit in their home assmiming on that same circut that is one of the few things attached. So if you have a spare room that only has the lights turned on or a garage that usually works great. Just be aware of what lights and outlets are connected to each other on the house grid and that’s simple enough to test by turning circuit breakers on and off.


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