Cost – $2
Installation time – 5 minutes
Materials/Tools Needed – Power strip
Maintenance – None
Phantom load (standby power, vampire power) is the power consumed by a product when switched off or not performing its primary purpose. Examples include televisions, stereos, phone/tablet chargers or any device with a wall wart (the black square between the device and the plug).
Most of these devices, especially older ones, use more electricity while off than while being used. Even though they may use less electricity per hour while off, they spend lots more hours off and those hours add up to significant electricity waste. Chargers use the same amount of electricity whether the device is attached or not. Americans waste an average of one month's electricity bill each year on phantom loads.
For televisions, stereos, computers, printers and gaming systems
1. Plug the cord into a power strip and plug the power strip into the wall.
2. Switch on the power strip to use the device.
3. Switch off the power strip when not in use.
For phones, mp3 players, GPS devices, portable games, tablet computers, electric toothbrushes, etc. simply unplug the charger when not charging.