When you’re taking small steps to improve the energy efficiency of your home, it’s a very rewarding pursuit! Some people choose to focus on turning lights off when they leave the room, others make home improvements to reduce drafts, and still others replace their home heating systems entirely. You can get as involved as you want when optimizing your electricity efficiency, but you don’t need to take any extreme measures.
Have you made sure you turn off and unplug home electronics that you are finished using? Even when they are plugged in and turned off, some devices continue to draw power. Whether you’re looking for everyday efficiency or want to minimize your bill while you’re away on vacation, here are five home electronics to double-check and turn off or unplug.
We’ve all done it – walking away from a gaming system to get a snack, you get distracted and don’t end up coming back to finish that round for hours. You might leave a gaming system on while you are at work or out of the home, and all the while, it’s draining a lot of electricity. Do your best to get your character to a save point, if applicable, then save and exit your game so you can turn off the console. While you’re at it, unplug it while you’re away to make sure it doesn’t draw any more power.
When you’re not watching the TV, why would you need to have a cable box turned on? Other devices that might be turned on include the DVD player or speakers. All of these devices will continue to draw power in order to sustain the connection and allow you to start watching TV at any time. When you’re out of the house, why would you need them on? Plug them all into a power bar so you can turn the entire power strip off at once.
Home printers are a very useful invention, since you don’t need to run to the print shop to print an assignment or work paper at the last minute. The problem is, they can draw a lot of energy whether they’re left on or off. Unplug printers when they aren’t in use and patiently put up with the startup time. Most printers will start up in just a few minutes at most anyway, if not seconds.
Bedside clocks and radios
Some clocks and bedside radios are high-powered. They need to have enough energy to make loud, scary alarm sounds to wake you up, after all. Try turning them off when you get up in the morning. Some clocks need to be left plugged in, but you might find one that can be quickly set as soon as you get into bed.
When your cellphone has finished charging, why leave it charging? You’re still drawing electricity, even if your phone doesn’t need any more charging. What’s more, you might leave the charger plugged in while you’re at work. Unplug it and just make a mental note to check whether your phone is charging when you plug in your phone to make sure you remember to plug it into the wall again.
These electronics can drain a tremendous amount of electricity before you even know it. If you make a concerted effort to turn off and unplug electronics that are not in use, you might be surprised at how much electricity you save.
Jean Linder is a finance guru. She frequently writes about unusual money saving tips for personal finance blogs. To save on your gas bill with Alberta Energy Just Energy, click the link.