Phantom energy, also known as standby power, is the invisible cost that adds up on your electric bill. Even when your devices are turned off, they continue to draw power and contribute to your energy consumption. The National Resource Defense Council estimates that Americans spend $19 billion annually on appliances and electronics that have phantom energy. However, there are ways to reduce this hidden cost and save money on your electric bill.
Energy usage monitors are a useful tool for identifying devices that consume the most energy. These monitors can not only measure the energy output of your appliances but also calculate how much it is costing you. Several options are available on the market, including the KETOTEK Watt Meter Power, Kill A Watt EZ Electricity Usage Monitor, and Poniie Plug-in Kilowatt Electricity Usage Monitor.
If you prefer not to invest in a monitor, there are other ways to identify energy-sucking appliances. Look for devices with remote controls, large brick chargers that remain warm, appliances that retain settings without batteries, and anything with a timer or display lights that stay on even when the device is turned off. Common culprits include gaming consoles, printers, televisions, computers, refrigerators, thermostats, kitchen appliances, and window air conditioners.
To combat phantom energy, unplug appliances and devices when not in use. This is especially important for larger items like printers and computers when leaving for a long period. If unplugging everything on a daily basis is not practical, consider using smart plugs. These devices reduce the amount of energy passing through and can be connected to your Wi-Fi network for easy control.
Additionally, when shopping for new appliances, look for those with the “Energy Star” sticker. This label indicates that the appliance is energy efficient and will help you further reduce your energy consumption and save money on your electric bill.
By implementing these strategies, you can significantly decrease the amount of phantom energy in your home and potentially save $100 to $200 annually on your energy bill.
– National Resource Defense Council: www.nrdc.org
– KETOTEK Watt Meter Power
– Kill A Watt EZ Electricity Usage Monitor
– Poniie Plug-in Kilowatt Electricity Usage Monitor