Spooky Electricity – “Phantom Energy” and “Voltage Vampires”?

Just as the vampire sucks your blood, machines are sucking the energy out of your house when appliances are turned off. (Photo courtesy of zdnet.com)

Just as the vampire sucks your blood, machines are sucking the energy out of your house when appliances are turned off. (Photo courtesy of zdnet.com)

As we all prepare to celebrate Halloween, we thought we’d bring  you some tips to save energy in your homes!

Who knew that power could be so spooky?  I love the term “phantom energy” but I personally feel that the term “vampire power” is more appropriate because just as a vampire loves to suck your blood, vampire power is constantly sucking away energy and draining money from your pockets.

These are just a couple of the terms used when referring to electrical products that cannot be switched off completely without being unplugged, such as your television, cell phone chargers, cable box, coffee maker, computers, etc., because these devices are created with little light bulbs, sensors, or other features that keep working as long as the device is plugged in.

You may think that the amount of electricity that gets used up in these situations is too small to worry about, but it does add up.  Let’s try to minimize these voltage vampires and phantom power loads by following these tips:

How to put a stake through the heart of these energy thieves:

  1. Pull out individual plugs where possible… for example – unplug your cell phone charger or toaster when you aren’t using it.
  2. In areas near computers and home entertainment equipment with lots of components, plug everything into one power strip – just make certain you get one with surge protection, and when you’re done for the night or weekend, flip off the illuminated switch.

Slaying voltage vampires in your home is a good way to save a few dollars on your electric bill, and it also helps cut down on everyday emissions lessening your carbon footprint.  It’s a little bit of extra work, but every little bit helps and Mother Earth will thank you.

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Filed under Cleveland Public Power, Community Outreach, Energy Efficiency

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