What are phantom energy loads?
A phantom load refers to electricity that’s being consumed by electronic devices and appliances even when you’re not using them. It’s easy to assume that just because a printer isn’t actually switched on that it’s not using any power. Or when a cell phone charger is plugged into an outlet, but not charging a device, then no electricity is being used. But this is usually not the case.
- Desktop computers (switched off or asleep)
- Fax machines
- Fans of all kinds
- Cell phone chargers (many other chargers too)
- Desktop computer monitors, printers, and speakers
- Laptop computers even if plugged in but NOT charging
- AC units
- Coffee makers and various other appliances
- Surge protectors
How do you stop phantom loads? Here are tips:
- Obviously, simply unplugging things like your computer, printer and monitor will instantly put a stop to any phantom loads from these devices. If any device which causes a phantom load can be unplugged when not in use, then do it!
- Use power strips. If you have a group of electronic devices used together all at the same time such as computer, monitor, printer and speakers just plug all of these into one power strip. You can then unplug the power strip when the devices are not being used and they’ll all be completely disconnected from the power supply.
- Look into Smart Power Strips. These are power strips which automatically stop all power to any device that’s not being used. Then you don’t have to worry about unplugging anything.
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