Protect Your Home from Hidden Energy Costs

By Brooke Drake, August 6, 2012, Energy Efficiency, Save Money

Protect your home from energy vampiresTexas summers are hot, which means that, as the temperatures go up, so does your home electricity bill. Now, there are some general ways to save energy in the home (i.e. lowering your air conditioner use in the summer, turning off lights, adding insulation, etc). But most of us forget the hidden items, or should I say the “energy vampires,” that use electricity without actually being turned on. These culprits use “standby power,” which means they consume electricity even while they are switched off or in a standby mode. According to the Department of Energy, this energy loss accounts for 5-8% of a single family home’s total electricity use each year.

So, with hot temperatures and kids home for the summer, the best place to target these energy vampires this season would be your living room.  Here are some energy sucking items that you should be aware of:

  • Cable boxes
  • VCR’s, DVD players, and most audio systems
  • TV’s, home cinema suites, and set-top boxes
  • Computers
  • Gaming systems

When identifying potential energy vampires, an easy rule of thumb is to look for any gadget or appliance that has a LED light, clock, a transformer (little black box), or a remote. Once you have found these energy hoarders, unplug them.

Now, if you’re like me, the idea of plugging and unplugging things all day doesn’t sound too appealing. So take some time to see which items you use the most and see if you could group them together, for example the TV, cable box, stereo and DVD player. You can plug them into one power strip and turn the strip on and off as needed throughout the day.

Don’t let these energy vampires suck up all your electricity; remember to unplug to save energy and save money this summer.

This content is part of Bounce Energy and‘s Sizzlin Summer Campaign. Check out our previous posts for tips on:


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Comments (2)


  1. Gnarum says:

    These energy vampires could have a big impact in our electricity bills!!
    Thanks for the advice. This is something we are not usually aware of and we should pay more attention.

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