Stand By Electrical Power

By Robert Robillard on Uncategorized

Stand By Electrical Consumption

Stand By Electrical Consumption

Most people assume that when they turn off an electrical appliance like their t.v. that they are turning it off.    Turning off most appliances does save energy but many appliances continue to use electricity after being shut off.  This is called stand by electrical power.

A large number of home electrical products from televisions to stereos to microwave ovens cannot be switched off completely without being unplugged.  These products draw power 24 hours a day which adds up!

This power consumption is commonly referred to as “standby power.”

In a study done at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, researchers found that stand-by power may consume as much as 15 to 30 watts per appliance.     [source: California Energy Commission].

Total this up and it’s estimated that more than 5 percent of your power bill can be attributed to appliances in standby mode, which equals about $4 billion consumer dollars spent to feed these appliances yearly
[source: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory].

Stand-by contributors include any device that relies on standby power to hold memory or power a clock; such as televisions, stereos, refrigerators, air conditioners computers and cell phone chargers. Off is not enough.

An individual product draws relatively little standby power (see here for examples) but a typical American home has up to forty products constantly drawing power. Together these amount to almost 10% of residential electricity use.

How can you reduce standby power use in your home?

Here are some suggestions:

  • If you aren’t frequently using a device, unplug it. [example: in guest rooms or room infrequently used ]
  • Use a switchable power strip for clusters of computer or video products. That way you can switch everything to zero with one off switch.
  • When shopping, search for low standby products. Knowledge is power ~ research your products before purchasing them.  Look up ENERGY STAR products which all have lower or no standby power use.

~ concord carpenter

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About the author

Robert Robillard

Carpenter / Remodeler / Editor

Rob Robillard is “The Concord Carpenter” Rob is a builder, general contractor, carpenter, woodworker, and editor of Concord Carpenter and ToolBoxBuzz As a General Contractor and carpenter, Rob owns and operates Concord Carpenter LLC. A full-service remodeling and construction company. Rob is a recognized leader in home building best practices and a source for how-to information for building professionals. On this website, Rob covers all aspects of home construction, building science, home improvement, woodworking, remodeling, and some of the best product and tool reviews. Rob is in charge of our Tool and Product Review series - Concord Carpenter Videos where we post all of our tool reviews and video tutorials. Rob approaches remodeling and building construction with a pragmatic and problem-solving approach. He enjoys using his knowledge and experience to help and educate building professionals as well as DIYers on best practices in the construction and remodeling industry. He's a strong advocate for "raising the bar" in the construction trades and promoting the trades to youth. #BeAMentor #Green2Great Craftsmanship, quality, and pride guide his journey on this channel The Concord Carpenter's motto: "Well done is better than well said!" : Read more about Rob

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