Today, many of the appliances, both large and small, and electronic devices in our homes draw a small amount of power even while they are switched off. This “phantom power” drain comes from VCRs, televisions, satellite and cable boxes and DVRs, stereos, computers, printers, kitchen appliances, clocks and clock radios, cell phone and portable music player chargers, and laptop chargers, almost anything plugged into wall power. This is especially true if the device has a remote control; the circuitry that responds to the remote must ALWAYS be on or the remote will not work. As much as three quarters of the electricity used to power many of these devices goes through these devices while the devices are off.
It’s easy to cut this costly power draw by unplugging these devices when they’re off. Of course, for some electronics, like clocks, televisions and the other devices related to them, cordless phones and the like, this can be very inconvenient. If your cordless phone is unplugged, you have no phone, you will have to reset all your clocks when you plug them back in, and the satellite and cable boxes always need power. But many devices like cell phone chargers, printers, print servers, fax machines, laptop charging cords, power supplies for computer speakers, etc., really don’t need to be on or even in “sleep mode” (where they still draw some power) overnight. Even leaving your computer on overnight consumes power needlessly.
The easy solution? Simply plug the electronics that can be left unpowered for a while into switchable power strips, and turn the power strips off when the devices will not be needed for several hours, like overnight.
Plug your computers, monitors, printers, speakers, external hard drives, USB hubs, etc. into a switchable power strip (preferably one with surge protection built in) and turn it off when you leave for the night, and then turn it back on in the morning.
On the other hand, some chargers do their work overnight, for instance the ones for your cell phone or MP3 player. So, to charge these devices, plug the chargers into another power strip that you turn on when you plug in your “daytime devices” to charge at night. Then, in the morning to start your day, turn off the power strip with the chargers for the cell phone and other “rechargeable daytime devices” and turn on the daytime working devices like the computer, etc.
The important thing is always think about power use and unplug … don’t just turn off – unplug or switch off with a power strip … anything you’re not using. You’ll save a great deal of power, lower your electric bill, and save resources used to create the power that will not have to be generated. Even if you create the power with your own wind and solar generators, if you use less washing dishes, you will have more for other things.
Dan Davenport wants the world to be a greener place … intelligently. Come to http://www.easy-energy-saving-home.com to find many energy and money saving ideas you can use every day.