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From: J.F. Sebastian12/5/2017 10:34:26 AM
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Bitcoin miner: 'I haven't paid for heat in three years'

It was roughly 30 ºF outside in Durham, North Carolina, on a recent day in late November, but Rahdi Fakhoury’s 1650-square-foot house was so warm he left a window open a bit. The heater he was using? Two Bitcoin mining machines and two Ethereum mining machines.

Fakhoury, 38, is part of a contingent of people who say mining bitcoins at home can be profitable while providing free heat. As the cryptocurrency price ( BTC-USD) skyrocketed and hit $11,000 last Wednesday, he woke up in a heated room and found his machines made $60, or 0.0026 bitcoin while costing $6 in electricity, in a day, according to calculations on

Like gold, the quantity of bitcoins is finite. Out of 21 million bitcoins, 16.7 million have been mined as of November 2017. In this digital “Gold Rush,” miners no longer need to travel to California or use shovels to dig into the ground.

People like Fakhoury just put printer-shape ASIC mining machines in their garages and basements and plug them in; then, codes running on the machine create new bitcoins using a complex mathematical and computing process, which also generates a great deal of heat. (Just like how your laptop sometimes overheats, but much more.)

Fakhoury now runs two Bitmain S9 bitcoin mining machines in a 5-foot-tall box in the basement, and he plans to add one more when it gets colder. Each machine consumes about 1400 Watts per hour, similar to an average space heater. The average electricity cost in his town is 0.06 per kWh, and last month his electric bill was about $450. It’s $250 more than when he used a heater, but he says the expense has been offset by the proceeds from the bitcoins he had mined.

“I haven’t paid for heat for three years,” Fakhoury said. “I would suggest people put half of their bitcoin investment into mining and half into purchasing the coins. That way you hedge yourself in both directions.”

Home mining is not for everyone

Rahdi Fakhoury runs bitcoin mining machines in the basement to heat his house in North Carolina. (Rahdi Fakhoury)

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