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Difference between kW, kVA and kVAR


The units are of the same “size”, but are used for different properties of the feed:

kW – Real Power
kVA – Apparent Power
kvar – Reactive Power

The relationship between the three values can be summarized in the following figure:

The real power and the reactive power together (root of the sum of the squares) give you the apparent power. On your bill, if you are on a demand tariff, you will be billed for the apparent power (kVA). The power factor determines how close the apparent power is to the real power (a PF of 1 would have the apparent power = real power).

I hope this info helps!

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