Vampire Loads Are Costing You Money!
Mike "Tech Overlord" Collette
There's a vampire on the loose! Whether you're at work, at home or out on the town, this vampire is taking a bite out of your wallet and raising your electricity costs. But, there's no need to barricade the house and stock up on garlic just yet. This vampire works entirely though your electrical outlets and stopping this monster can be as easy as pulling a few plugs.
Vampire Power can go by many names. For example - Standby power, vampire draw, phantom load, ghost load or leaking electricity.
Vampire Power refers to the electricity many gadgets and appliances waste just by being plugged in (even if they're switched off). Vampire Power can account for as much as 20% of your monthly electricity bill. Because it often goes unnoticed, we also call it standby power. Essentially, every cord that remains plugged into an outlet is pulling electricity out.
While many devices have sleep or standby modes, they still continuously use Energy to perform updates, connect to remote servers, and record data. What do you think your cell-phone charger does all day while it's plugged into the wall? If it's warm when you get home from work, then it's been using electricity -- even if it had nothing to charge. The same goes for Smart TVs, Cable Boxes, Playstations, Air Purifiers, Computers, etc...
In the average U.S. home, 25 percent of electricity use by home electronics occurs while the products are off.
Detecting Vampire Loads
Some equipment has a quick-start mode; vampire power is eliminated if this mode is NOT used. Video game consoles often use power when they are turned off, but the vampire power can be further reduced if the correct options are set. For example, a Wii console can go from 18 watts to 8 watts to 1 watt by turning off the WiiConnect24 and Standby Connection options.
Devices that have rechargeable batteries and are always plugged in use vampire power even if the battery is fully charged. Corded appliances such as vacuum cleaners, electric razors, and simple telephones do not need a standby mode and do not consume the vampire power that cordless equivalents do.
Older devices with power adapters that are large and are warm to the touch use several watts of power. Newer power adapters that are lightweight and are not warm to the touch may use less than one watt.
Measuring Vampire Loads
The power wasted in standby must go somewhere; it is dissipated as heat. The temperature, or simply perceived warmth, of a device on standby long enough to reach a stable temperature gives some idea of power wasted. For most home applications, watt meters give a good indication of energy used, and some indication of vampire load consumption.
Here's a link to a watt meter used to measure Vampire Loads.
Simple Vampire Power Remedies
- Group appliances and electronics together on power strips and switch on only when needed, however be careful not to overload your power strip.
- Unplug battery/phone chargers when the batteries are fully charged or the chargers are not in use.
- Turn off your computer when not in use for 20 minutes or more and both the computer and monitor if away for two hours or more.
- Screen savers do not reduce energy use by monitors; automatic switching to sleep mode or manually turning monitors off is a better energy-saving strategy.
- Vampire power consumption of some computers can be reduced by turning off components that use power in standby mode. For instance, disabling Wake-on-LAN (WoL), "wake on modem", "wake on keyboard" or "wake on USB" may reduce power when in standby. Unused features may be disabled in the computer's BIOS setup to save power.
- Unplug unneeded night lights.
- Buy ENERGY STAR equipment, in which standby power use may be lower than one watt.
- Purchase remote switches for outlets to completely cut off power when switched to off.
- Timers can be used to turn off vampire power to devices that are unused on a regular schedule.
Vampire Power is Costing Consumers Big Bucks!
In the United States alone, vampire power costs consumers more than $3 billion a year! The moral of the story is that Vampire Loads Suck! (no pun intended)
By far the biggest remedy for Vampire Power is to produce your own electricity by transitioning to Solar Energy.
Call Solar Wolf Energy at 888-878-4396 to set up your no cost analysis with a professional solar consultant or talk to one of our appointment setters via the Live Chat on our website. You can also request a free quote or send us an email on our contact page located here: Contact Solar Wolf Energy