Campus News

Avoid energy-sucking ‘vampires’

Electrical devices continue to draw energy when turned off but still plugged in. Pamela Turner, an associate professor and housing extension specialist with the College of Family and Consumer Sciences, said that the average household in the U.S. spends $100 each year powering devices that are off or in standby mode. 

This standby power is often referred to as vampire or phantom power. Turner said the average home has about 20 vampires including televisions, phone chargers, microwaves, computers, printers, coffee machines and telephones. To put a stop to energy vampires, Turner suggests:

• Using a power strip to turn off several devices at once. A television scheduled to record programs shouldn’t be turned off or it won’t record. 

• Unplugging chargers once phones, cameras and batteries are charged. 

• Using Energy Star settings on computers and monitors that go into a save mode when not in use. 

• Turning your computer and monitor off if you are gone for two or more hours.

• When replacing electronics and appliances, buy Energy Star certified products, which meet strict energy efficiency guidelines.