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A few weeks ago, someone in the Practical Caravan forums asked about ways to measure electricity use in a caravan. The consensus was that the electricity monitors many energy suppliers are now providing for ‘free’ won’t be of any use, since they rely upon a sensor that needs to be clamped to the live mains feed cable and this isn’t possible at a campsite pitch.

The easiest alternative appears to be a 13A monitor that plugs into a mains socket and provides a pass-through socket for a mains device. Although this only works with a single device, advice in the forum suggested that it could be wired into a van’s mains inlet to monitor total electricity consumption.

The only problem is that since the read-out is on the monitor itself, the practicalities of wiring one to a van’s mains inlet may make seeing how many Watts are being consumed a little tricky.

However, this shouldn’t be an issue with the Belkin Conserve Insight electricity monitor. Although this plugs into a mains socket in the usual way, its electricity usage display is a separate part that’s attached by a 1.5m cable so it can beer positioned in a more accessible spot.

The Belkin Conserve Insight costs around £30 — rather more than a single-plug monitor, but you’re paying for the convenience of the separate display.