If you’re looking for a way to curtail high energy costs, spend some time around your home discovering your energy vampires. They probably lurk in each room of your home, especially if you have a home office or use a lot of products with chargers. They’re called energy vampires because you end up using electricity that serves no function, but you have to pay for it.
All the chargers you use for electronic devices continue to draw power even though you don’t have anything plugged into them. Other products that sap your power include televisions, DVRs, clocks, microwaves and anything else that keeps a memory of your settings. While it may not be practical to unplug all these devices in your home, you can shrink high energy costs with a little planning and organization.
- Find all the chargers your family uses and put them in one place. When the device needs to be charged, plug the charger into a power strip. When you’re done charging, remove the charger and shut off the strip. It doesn’t seem like you’re saving much electricity, but it could add up to as much as $100 a year.
- If you want to leave some devices on constantly, choose smart power strips that have several outlets that supply power and shut the power down to others when the strip is off. Clocks, DVR players or programmable coffee makers are a convenience, and when you plug them into smart strips, they’ll do what you ask them but cut the power to other things you don’t need charging.
- Although it doesn’t take vampire power, your air conditioner may be the largest power consumer in your home. Keeping it maintained, along with dealing with the energy vampires, can curb high energy costs. The most important thing you can do is keep the filter for the air handler clean, along with gently hosing off the outdoor condenser with water.