Beware of Vampire Loads

Don’t let your energy spend haunt you this year! Your home’s energy efficiency can be hindered by unchecked energy vampire loads. An energy vampire is a device that continues to use energy and drain power when it is turned off or in standby mode. During idle times, small bits of energy are being used to keep them in standby rather than being turned completely off. And just like mythical creatures they’re named for, vampire devices slowly drain energy without being noticed.

For example, you probably turn off your computer before you leave work. But if you don’t also turn off your monitor, it is still on and consuming energy to remain on standby, despite the fact it isn’t displaying anything.

Some common types of energy vampires are:

  • Cable and satellite boxes
  • Digital TV converters
  • Computer monitors
  • Mobile/cellular devices
  • MP3 players
  • Video game consoles
  • Standby coffee makers
  • Devices that turn on instantly via remote control
  • Devices with standby light or clock
  • Wall bricks

The best way to avoid vampire loads is unplugging them. When laptops and cell phones are fully charged, unplug the power cords. Appliances such as coffee makers and other devices which are used infrequently or once a day should be unplugged when not in use. Also, electronics can be plugged into a central power strip where the flow of energy can be toggled on and off to all devices with one simple switch.

Be energy aware this fall, and help control not only your energy spend, but your energy bill, too.

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