Monday, May 11, 2009

"Vampire" Energy Costs Can Bite You in the Wallet

Kathy Kristof writes a good article about household "Vampire" energy costs that have been picked up by a number of papers. In her article she discusses how a number of household appliances/electronics continue to use energy even when not in use. Some of the key points and advice include:

* Use a power strip to service your entertainment system. That way, you don't have to reach behind the large TV to unplug the TV and supporting equipment.
* Cell phone charges are a common energy "vampire."
* Refrigerators use less energy when they are full.
* A rarely used refrigerator in the garage or basement can burn through about $300 per year. Consider unplugging it if you're not keeping it full.
* Keep A/C filters clean.
* Employ fans to help cool your house. Fans can make a room feel 5 degrees cooler.
* Use a programmable thermostat for home A/C so that you're not cooling your house when away from home.
* Inspect windows for heat/cooling leakage.
* Schedule your home for an energy audit by your utility company. A common house owner can cut energy bills 30% by taking all suggestions from an energy audit.

Here's Ms. Kristof's article.

1 comment:

FB @ said...

I pay $12.50/month in utilities. Period.

(BF pays the other half)

I think it just stems from us not using a lot of electricity (we don't have curtains, but wide open windows for light), and the only things that run 24/7 are electronics and/or oven clock and fridge.

Other than that, we have a nightlight that comes on when we head into the bathroom at night or even during the day, and we don't have much clutter, so we never trip or stub our toes.

And we just got used to living with as little electricity as possible.