Home House Standby to Save Energy and Money around the House
Standby to Save Energy and Money around the House
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Standby power is a something that is present in a great number of modern electrical devices. In simple terms it refers to the electric power (energy) consumed by electronic appliances while it is switched off or in a standby mode.

The amount of wasted standby power of a single electronic device is typically very small, often between 10 and 15 watts per device, but in some instances it can be more. Having multiple devices continuously plugged in can however equate to as much as 10 percent of total household energy consumption. You can check how much energy your devices are each using in standby mode with a watt meter.

Equipment that commonly uses standby power includes;

  • VCR player, DVD players and entertainment systems; 
  • TVs and set-top boxes; 
  • Microwave ovens ;
  • Computers, digital monitors and printers ;
  • Air conditioning systems with remote controls;
  • Devices which turn on via a remote control;
  • Devices that go into standby mode, standby lights, standby indicator or clocks; 
  • Power adapters that are plugged in and turned on, regardless if they are powering a device or not (eg phone chargers); and 
  • Home video game consoles such as Nintendo Wii, Microsoft Xbox 360 & Sony PlayStation 3.

There are a few simple way to eliminate or reduce standby power. The simplest is to unplug any unused devices so that they cannot possibly consume any energy. To switch off multiple devices that are used together such as a computer, printer and scanners consider using a switchable power adapter with multiple sockets, although care should always be taken to ensure such equipment will not lose configuration settings if power is withdrawn.  Another alternative is to consider buying energy saving devices or devices that offer a real off switch when purchasing new equipment and appliances.