Lights, Vampires and Holiday Wishes!



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Maybe you’ve seen this already, its’ been floating around the web, but I Love this picture.  Some of us go for broke when it comes to holiday decoration.  I’m only lightly (sorry) using the metaphor “going for broke”.

We celebrate this time of year as the skies grow darker earlier and the season shortens for cultural and religious reasons and just plain fun.    I’m more in the Ditto camp, but we do have a Christmas tree.     

Out of curiosity I used a nifty device called a Kill-A-Watt, and I metered my own Christmas tree at home.  We like the old school lights, the big bulbs and the bubbling ones. One year we left a strip plugged in lying on the couch and burned a hole in it.       

Well, my little tree with a few strips of lights big and small draws about 320watts.  I have an electric tea kettle that boils water with less wattage.  I can make coffee with that.   A co-worker’s tree with LED lights draws about 20watts. 

I’m probably not going to change. I like the light from the tree.  It makes me happy.   I suppose although it’s not efficient, it helps heat my house. (Yes, heating my house in Maine with light bulbs is not necessarily the smartest economic move I’ve made!)

Question I have now is “how about all 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 suppose).  Our TV’s and their electronic entourage, sit around waiting to entertain drawing power with their clocks lights and standby modes.  Set top boxes and DVR’s  can have a huge draw and can be worse than a good refrigerator!       

We make choices with our home and what we do to run the things in them, and it’s good to make informed ones.   Using energy costs money.  Wasting energy costs even more. Maybe the “Ditto” family has some extra cash for the presents under the tree instead, or a week in the Bahamas.  What would you do with the money you’re wasting needlessly on phantom loads?  Oh, don’t forget:  air leaks, spotty insulation, old inefficient heating equipment, leaky ductwork….What does your holiday wish list look like?




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2 Responses to “Lights, Vampires and Holiday Wishes!”

  1. Nick Says:

    Haha thats great! Made my night…good post Jason. Was your Co-workers tree bright enough with LED lights? I can apprecate the honesty about your tree as well. =) Happy Holidays!

    • Mike Rogers Says:

      Hey Nick,

      I use LED lights on our tree–I find them much brighter than the old incandescent lights they replaced. And there are some bigger bulb options, too.


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