Phantom (Standby) Power
Many appliances and electronic equipment use electricity even when turned off.
- Estimated 6% of average household electric use
- 43 billion kilowatt-hours per year in the United States
Some standby power is useful because it lets equipment receive remote control signals. However, other uses are not needed:
- Cell phone and other battery chargers plugged in when not in use
- Seldom used computer printers or other peripherals left on 24/7
How to save
- Check out a "Watts Up" portable energy meter from your public library to learn which equipment uses power when turned off.
- Unplug equipment when not in use.
- Use a switched power strip to turn off several pieces at once.
- Look for the ENERGY STAR® label when buying new appliances and equipment.
- Avoid buying equipment with a clock or remote functions that are not needed.