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Goodbye phantom power, hello savings!

November 28, 2020

Lowering your electricity bill starts, among other things, with hunting down phantom power. Read on to find out what phantom power is and how you can eliminate it.

What is phantom power?

Even when turned off, many electronics and appliances continue to draw power for many features: clocks, LEDs, touch pads and receiving Wi-Fi or remote-control signals. This is known as phantom power.

Up to 10% of Quebec home electricity bills could account for power drawn from unused electronic devices – because turned “off” doesn’t necessarily mean “disconnected.” Whether it’s for a battery charger in your entrance or the stereo in your living room, the power drawn is invisible but very real. Take a look around your home at all the little lights – some of them are always on...

Unplug to save

Enjoy whipping up desserts with your state-the-art mixer? Don’t forget to unplug it when you’re done! Espresso machines, microwaves, electric toothbrushes and game consoles are among the 20 to 40 devices that are rarely used but silently drain dozens of watts of energy. The good news is they’re easy to unplug, making it easy to save on power.

Power bars to avoid unpleasant surprises

Did you know that some products, such as microwaves, have a power save mode to prevent phantom power? Use them to deactivate unnecessary displays. You can also plug all your devices into a power bar or smart plug-in switch. That way, all you need to do is turn off this switch to disconnect your devices. An added advantage of the smart plug-in switch is that you can disconnect your devices even when you’re not home.

Smart power bars

Can you reduce phantom power without drastically changing your habits? Yes, you can with a smart power bar. Simply plug the main device (TV or computer) into the master outlet and other related devices (DVD player, game console, printer, speakers) into the slave sockets. When you turn off your computer after a marathon of videoconferences, all the related devices will also be totally disconnected. Peace of mind guaranteed!

Look for the Energy Star

A fast and easy trick, when you’re shopping for a new device, is to look for Energy Star certified products. The little blue star can help you save up to 70% on power, whether your devices are in operation or in standby mode. Isn’t that interesting?

At Hilo, we pride ourselves in helping you consume our precious energy better and enjoy cost savings. Reducing power waste is easy! Simply identify the sources of energy loss and find the best solution to address them.

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