Sample power usage
Below is a table of various household electronics, measured with a kill-a-watt power meter. There are a few things you can easily do to reduce your monthly electric bill. You'll notice from the table below that many electronic devices consume power even when switched off. For example, I measured several PC's, and even when off they typically consumed 3-7 watts of power (24x7x365 - it adds up!). PC speakers, DVD players, VCRs, stereos, cordless phones, and some TVs also consume power even when "off". This is know as "Vampire Power" – Wasted Standby Power.
I suggest that you plug your PC, printer, monitor, and PC speakers into a multi-outlet power strip and turn off the power strip when you're not using your computer. Just doing this would typically save 40-50 kilowatts of power a year.
Another easy way to reduce your electric bill is to switch to compact flourescent lightbulbs (CFL bulbs). For example, a regular 60 watt incandescent lightbulb can be replaced by a 14 watt CFL bulb. The 14 watt CFL bulb produces about the same amount of light as the incandescent bulb! Try and buy CFL's that are rated 2700K color temperature - these have a light that looks most like a regular bulb's. Home Depot sells CFL bulbs for $3-$4 (as of July 2006).
You can also see from the table below that window unit air conditioners use a LOT of power. If you're trying to cut back on your electric bill, use them sparingly.
|Item||Watts - on||Watts - off|
|Netgear DS108 switch||2||0|
|Netgear GS605 switch||3||N/A|
|Linksys RT31P2 router||7||N/A|
|Motorola SB4200 Surfboard cable modem||2||N/A|
|Dell 1905FP 19" Flat Panel LCD monitor||31||0|
|iPod - 3rd generation (off and charging)||N/A||2|
|Tivo - series 1||24||N/A|
|Compaq P450 PC - built-in graphics||35||5|
|18 Cubic Foot Refridgerator||155||N/A|
|Small window unit air conditioner (circa 2005)||425||N/A|
|PC (amd xp chip)||100||6|
|Buffalo Airstation G54 wireless access point||3||N/A|
|Wide screen tv (48")||170||1|
|Epson R200 printer||N/A||0|