Smart Power Strip to Reduce Phantom Loads

A couple of months ago I mentioned phantom loads, hidden uses of electricity throughout the home.  They really add up with a lot of electronics that continue to draw power even when they’re “off”.  One way to address this is to use power strips to completely cut off energy to the equipment/adapter/transformer when you’re not using them.  This can be particularly useful with entertainment centers and computer stations which have many separate components quietly sucking electricity and spinning your electric meter.  I’ve got my own kids well trained to turn off the power strip when done watching a movie–it kills power to the monitor, the DVD player, the sound system, and PlayStation, etc. all of which would otherwise keep draining watts.
Smart Strip LGC3 energy saving power strip

Smart Strip LGC3 energy saving power strip

This requires behavior change, though.  There are a new breed of “smart” power strips that hold great promise.  The feature a “control” switch and subordinate switches.  When the equipment plugged into the control outlet is turned off or in the case of a computer goes to sleep, power is killed to everything plugged into the subordinate outlets.  The strips also have “always on” outlets, so you don’t have to worry about your router or TiVo getting powered down inadvertantly.  And the strips provide surge protection for the equipment, too.  A simple way to chip away at electricity use.  There are different makes/models out there.  We like the “Smart Strip



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One Response to “Smart Power Strip to Reduce Phantom Loads”

  1. Lights, Vampires and Holiday Wishes! « GreenHomes America Says:

    […] the other things with clocks and lights, plugged in but not doing anything.”  Mike has mentioned “smart” power strips in the past.  This might be a good stocking stuffer for some (well if you have a big stocking I […]

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