Many people are surprised to find out that they are surrounded by vampires when they turn off the lights in their home.
These aren’t the vampires that stalk the night in folktales and horror stories, however. They are electronic vampires: devices that continue to consume energy even when they are not in use. Researchers at the Northern Resources Defense Council found that devices in sleep or standby mode account for roughly one-quarter of all residential energy consumption. The utility company will still make you pay for this energy even though you weren’t technically using it. Therefore, these vampires are not only wasting energy, but also your money.
There’s no need to put a stake through the heart your electronics, fortunately—this problem can be solved with the help of a smart power strip!
Traditional Power Strips vs. Smart Power Strips
Both traditional and smart power strips supply power to multiple devices using only one electrical outlet. Traditional power strips are meant to protect your devices from electrical surges, but as long as your power strip is on, the devices plugged into it will continue to use energy—even if they are in standby mode. This means that traditional power strips are actually “increasing” you energy usage, which in turn will raise your monthly bills.
A smart power strip, on the other hand, is designed to protect both your devices and your wallet! Smart power strips can detect when a device is in standby mode so they can cut off power and save energy. Using a smart power strip can drastically reduce your overall energy usage, which will decrease your utility bills.
Tips For Using Smart Power Strips
There are several types of smart power strips, so it’s important to learn which one is appropriate for your devices. The main difference between each type of smart power strip is the method that is used to detect whether or not a device is in standby mode. Some smart power strips use USB cables to measure a computer’s power level and detect when it is in standby mode. However, some computers continue to power those USB ports, even if it’s cut off energy to the device itself. As a result, this type of smart power strip will not be as effective.
There are also motion detector smart power strips, which assume that a device is in standby mode when activity is no longer detected. These smart power strips are perfect for certain devices, such as lamps, however they are not ideal for computers. If you use a motion detector strip on a computer, it’s possible that your computer could shut down and erase your work if you simply walk away for a few moments to get a snack.
If your smart power strip is not shutting down devices that are in standby mode, it’s probably not broken. Instead, it is most likely a problem with the voltage sensitivity. Most smart power strips allow you to control the voltage sensitivity, so try adjusting this to see if the strip works correctly.
Installing a smart power strip is a quick and easy way to cut your household expenses. Strategically place these power strips around your home so you can start reaping the financial rewards of a more energy efficient home!