One of the easiest ways to cut power consumption this winter is to stop the energy vampires in your home from draining electricity 24/7. It’s likely your home is populated by appliances and devices that use standby power, even when they’re not running. Anything that uses a timer or has a clock is draining electricity when it’s plugged in.
The top five offenders include:
- Computers – Computer monitors use more power than the CPU itself, but it’s easy to set the system so it goes to sleep after it sits idle for a short time. Set the computer to sleep after 30 minutes.
- Televisions – Any television that turns on instantly is wasting energy when it’s off. Plasma televisions are the worst offenders. If it doesn’t interfere with its programming, it’s best to put the television on a power strip. Alternatively, you can choose Energy Star certified televisions that use much less standby power.
- VCRs, DVD players and sound systems – This equipment draws power continually. Unless you’ve programmed them, unplug them.
- Portable electronic devices – Any handheld devices that need charging are energy vampires. The chargers continue to use power when they’re plugged in. The best way to avoid wasting energy is to gather up the chargers, label them for the device they charge and use one power strip. When you’re done, turn the power strip off.
- Kitchen appliances that have clocks or timers – Microwaves and coffeemakers have clocks that need a constant flow of electricity. If you don’t need them programmed, unplug them until you need to use the appliance.
While disabling devices that use standby power will cut your energy consumption, you can also save a considerable amount of energy by tending to your heating system. Keeping the air filters clean and performing seasonal maintenance will go a long way toward reducing overall energy consumption. Since your heating system consumes about half the energy you use, keeping it in top condition will reduce your heating expenses.
To learn more about energy vampires, contact the pros at All Temp Co., Inc. Air Conditioning & Heating. We’ve been serving Charlotte area homeowners for more than 28 years.