Electronics That Are Sucking Electricity Even When Not In Use

by John

Have you ever looked at your electricity bill and wondered “Huh, am i really using all this electricity? I can’t believe it!”? You may have not known this, but  you may only be responsible for about 70% of that electricity bill. The remaining 30% could be  all your electric equipment sucking electricity even when you are not using them. The electricity used by them when not in use is probably only a small amount, but the number of electronics that we all buy and the fact that they are connected to the grid 24×7 adds up to a substantial amount of electric energy being wasted for nothing. This energy wastage goes by  many different terms like vampire power, phantom load and standby power sucker.

electronic devices suck power even when not in use - unplug devices to save electricity

Here are examples of some common electronic equipment, that we use in our daily lives, wasting energy when not in use.

  • Television – The idiot box is probably the biggest culprit when it comes to sucking unnecessary power. Almost all modern day manufactured televisions have a “standby” mode where your TV is not actually turned off. It is just in a waiting mode, so that when you press on the remote it will immediately come back to life.
  • DVD players – Like TVs, DVD players are also on standby mode when plugged in and not being used. Most DVD players will have a lit screen displaying either the time or the mode that it currently is in.
  • Computers and Computer Monitors – I hate it when i am driving on the road and can see computer screens in buildings displaying screen savers. Why cant people just turn off their computers and computer monitors when not being used? Are you unplugging your laptop after you turn it off? Laptops will continue to charge their batteries even after they are turned off but when still plugged in. Make sure you are switching off your computer monitor after you turn off the computer otherwise the monitor just goes to a standby mode.
  • Cell Phone Chargers and Power Adapters – Your cell phone charger and power adapters (like for laptops) are using power even when they do not have a device plugged into them. So if you are not charging your cell phone or using a device that needs the power adapter,  just unplug them.
  • Microwaves – They make our lives so much easier by heating up our food in minutes. They display time on a digital display and usually have a lighted screen. The screen is lighted and time displayed even when you are not using the microwave oven. This is unnecessary and a total waste of electricity. How many clocks does one need in a house?
  • Stoves – Like microwaves, stoves also have a digital display and a lighted screen that is using electricity even when the stove is not turned on.
  • Hand-held vacuum cleaners – The constant charging of hand held vacuum cleaners is also using electricity. Even though they are handy and ready to use when you need them, the constant charging takes up a substantial bit of electricity.

Steps you can take to stop/reduce unnecessary sucking of electricity

I have always wondered why cannot the electronic manufacturer come up with a way to stop this unneeded sucking of power? After all it is something that they designed and manufactured. Cant they figure out a way to just not use any electricity when the device is not being used? or can’t they at least give a “complete off” switch so that we turn them off manually?

The most easiest solution to save money and stop unnecessary usage of electricity would be to unplug devices and equipments that are not being used. Plug them into an electric outlet only when need be. Using of power strips is a good idea for TVs, DVRs and DVD players as they are all probably being used at the same time. You can turn off one switch that controls the power strip and in turn automatically control power to each of those devices. The best option would be to use the Smart Power Strip LCG5 for energy savings and surge protection. The smart power strip LCG5 is an extremely useful device that will cut off power completely to devices not in use. It also provides protection from sudden power surges and voltage fluctuations.

Also, remember to unplug all these devices and especially the stoves and microwaves when you are on a holiday or out for an extended period of time.

{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

Eva July 2, 2010 at 3:45 am

Umm, wow, the other comment-leavers are pretty hostile; I just wanted to say thanks for the awesome article. =)

Power-Monitors June 27, 2011 at 11:05 pm

Very helpful information for energy saving, thanks.

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