0 Eco-Challenge - Standby Power RESULTS

Our weekly Eco-Challenge was to assess all of our standby power users in our house. It is a real eye opener for sure. What was interesting is that we would assess one area of the house and document what was using standby power then a few days later the item plugged in (and left plugged in) would change to something else. Looks like we need to change the way we go about things around here.

What did we find....well here is the list (we did not include major items that need to remain plugged in like the fridge)

- Powerbar in the family room (TV, Playstation, cable box)
- Hairdryer
- Straightener
- Clippers
- Floor lamp in family room
- Battery charger for tools in garage

 - The "Charging Zone" (cellphone/BlackBerry chargers, battery charger)
 - TV's in master bedroom and spare bedroom
- Alarm clock in master bedroom and spare bedroom
- Powerbars in Office (monitor, CPU, printer, router, modem, phone, paper shredder
- Vacuum
- Table lamps in master bedroom and spare bedroom
- Cable box in master bedroom
- Laptop
- Toaster

My co-worker is going to lend us his nifty tool that will take a reading on each item and will calculate how much power it is using (including how much it costs us). Hold me, I am scared to find out!

What the heck are we going to do about all of this? Some things are easier to address than others. Some will require a change in habit where as others are just common sense. I mean who keeps their vacuum plugged in for days (coughcoughweekscoughcough)?

For the family room TV zone we will make sure everything but the cable box is plugged into the powerbar and then we will turn the powerbar off at night. We won't be plugging the cable box in because it has a clock on it and it reboots all the channels when the power removed then turned back on.

Things that will remain plugged in - the lights throughout the house.

Things that will be unplugged after use - everything used in the "Charging Zone", toaster, vacuum, clippers, straighter, hair dryer, laptop, tool battery charger. We will be creating a fine jar so if we don't unplug these items after they are done charging we will have to pay a fine. The money will go towards buying a new powerbar for our office.

Things we need to think more about - the TV's in the bedrooms and the office.

Things I would like to smash with a sledge hammer - the alarm clocks. Does anyone remember the Seinfeld episode with Kenny Rogers Chicken? That is what our alarm clocks are like...only blue light and green light.

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