Watch out for energy vampires! They may not dress up in a costume, but they’re scary none-the-less. These vampires are responsible for excess energy consumption, and they do it right under your nose!
Welcome to the season for everything pumpkin, including breakfast cereal, kettle corn, and, wait for it— marshmallows. And you thought the little ghosts, goblins, and vampires running from door-to-door on Halloween were frightening!
Did you know the neighborhood kids aren’t the only vampires you should fear?
October isn’t only for the little ghouls—it’s also National Energy Awareness Month. To celebrate, take a minute and explore how you can conserve energy by staying aware of energy vampires and the sneaky ways they gobble up electricity in your home.
What Are Energy Vampires Anyway?
Unlike the neighborhood vampires on Halloween night, the good news is that energy vampires don’t get a kick out of scaring people. Instead, they’re subtle and crafty.
They work behind the scene in homes everywhere, collectively wasting an enormous amount of energy and contributing to high energy bills.
You’ll find energy vampires disguised as appliances and electronics, using energy even when you turn them off. How is that even possible? Some electronics go into standby mode, meaning they never truly shut down.
How to Tag the Energy Vampires in Your Home
Before showing you how to identify these overconsumers, let’s first look at a few of the top energy vampires. You may get a shock when you discover how many you have in your home.
It’s not uncommon for a person to leave a computer plugged in 24/7. Maybe they assume once they turn off the screen or close the laptop, all activity ceases, but that’s not how it works. Computers, routers, modems, and printers all consume energy unless you pull the plug from the wall.
Any instant-on TVs you keep plugged into an electrical outlet use energy even if you turn them off from the remote or ON/OFF button. These include LCD, LED, and rear projection TVs.
Would it surprise you to know your cable box likely uses more energy than your energy-efficient refrigerator? Cable set-top boxes and their accomplices, DVRs, and VHS and DVD players, consume a significant amount of energy because they’re always on. Manufacturers don’t design them for energy efficiency, either
People only use them about a third of the time. We pay more money to not use cable boxes than we do when we’re actively watching a show or recording one.
Wall Warts and Bricks
We all use cell phone chargers, a.k.a wall warts. You wouldn’t think a phone charger would use energy once it finishes charging, but it does.
The large black boxes—bricks— on laptop cords, TVs, and cable equipment, also consume energy continuously when plugged in, even if you don’t turn on the device.
The list could go on, but we need to move on to share the different ways you can run interference on the work of energy vampires. We have one more vampire to mention though: anything with an LCD or LED clock or constant display!
How to Stop Energy Vampires
You have several tools right at your fingertips that can help you minimize voltage wasted by energy vampires. These three practical actions will allow you to take back the power:
- Unplug electronics when not in use.
- Use power strips to turn off TVs and other electronics.
- Turn off printers, routers, and other peripherals if you’re not using them.
It sounds so simple, but you know what they say about old habits. Be patient with yourself.
Putting a stop to the energy drain caused by the energy vampires means committing to breaking old habits. Besides the computers, TVs, and chargers that steal your energy, there are other things in your home wasting energy.
For example, the HVAC system, that old water heater, and your outdated lighting often guzzle energy like there’s no tomorrow.
Your furnace, air conditioner, and water heater usually won’t see an uptick in efficiency as they age. Instead, these appliances waste more and more energy. While not exactly vampires, they will suck the life out of your budget if you don’t repair or replace them when needed.
Most people aren’t sure where they’re experiencing energy waste. All they know is their energy bills continue increasing. Working with an energy intelligence company that analyzes your energy use can help shed some light on how much energy your household wastes.
Consider participating in a complimentary energy audit. It will not only reveal details about your energy consumption but can help you find an energy plan that fits the unique needs of your household.
The Impact of Wasted Energy
Today, you feel the effects of energy vampires and other high energy consumers in your home when you pay your monthly electric bill. If left unchecked, tomorrow, wasted energy will impact the environment, which directly affects future generations.
Unless we all commit to consuming less energy, we will continue on our crash course to ruining the planet where we live.
Reducing the amount of energy we waste results in an array of positives, including:
- Protecting Our Air
- Preventing Climate Change
- Saving Ecosystems and the Animals Living in Them
- Conserving Natural Resources
- Saving Money on Energy Use
By using an online savings calculator, you’ll gain a better understanding of how reducing your energy consumption will save you money, increase efficiency, and minimize your carbon footprint.
We Can Show You How to Conserve Energy
As the only energy intelligence service that partners directly with Energy Star, we’re in a unique position to offer our customers the most up-to-date solutions to their energy concerns. While we’re happy to help you identify those energy vampires, we go way beyond showing people how unplugging phone chargers and using power strips reduce waste.
We have the technology and expertise to help identify your household’s energy leaks and what you can do to save money on electricity while reducing your energy consumption’s environmental impact.
Sign up to EnerWisely for Free today to find the energy vampires in your home and start saving!