Try This: Smart Outlets

One way to save some green while being green.


Have you heard of “energy vampires”? They’re electronics that use power even when turned off. Consider the cable box1:

As HDTVs and digital cable have increased their market share, these devices have also skyrocketed in use — and they’re certainly having an impact on your energy bill. Even when they’re powered off, these devices consume an average of 17.83 watts. That means that even if you simply left your cable box plugged in for a year and never turned it off, it would add $17.83 to your electrical bill. Make that a cable box with DVR capabilities, which is an increasingly popular option, and your total more than doubles to $43.46.

Don’t let energy vampires rule the house: take control of your electronics with smart outlets. You can turn smart outlets on or off from anywhere — and when we say off, we mean off. Anything plugged into them won’t draw energy unless the outlet itself is on.

Get the setup:

  • Pro Tip: Attach Motion and Multipurpose Sensors to your system. You can combine them with smart outlets to get even greater control over your energy consumption. Make sure lamps only turn on only when someone is in the room, or turn electronics off automatically when the temperature near them goes above a certain threshold. For an all-in-one solution, grab the Home Monitoring Kit, which gives you a Hub, an Outlet, a Motion Sensor, and two Multipurpose Sensors.

1energy.gov

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  • So I’m going to buy a smart outlet and a motion detector to “save” $43? And how much do those two devices cost? More than $43.
    Couldn’t you just buy nothing and brown bag your lunch for a week?