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USA: Charge Your Electric Car For Less: Switch Off Unused Appliances

One of the reasons people make the switch from a gasoline car to an electric car is to benefit from the reduced running costs.

With some careful planning — and special time of use tariffs that make night-time electricity cheaper — charging an electric car can be pretty cheap.

But what if you could make charging your electric car at home even cheaper, by changing one simple thing: killing standby.

Meet the vampire

Go around any modern home, and you’ll see any number of games consoles, smartphone chargers, computers and gadgets, all plugged into wall outlets.

Even when they’re not being used, if these gadgets are plugged into the mains and in standby (or even off), they will consume small amounts of electricity.

110V outlet
The larger your family and home, the more likely you are to have gadgets plugged in sucking power from the grid, like energy-hungry electrical vampires.

Hungry, hungry, appliances

While many consumers have made the switch to laptop computers, leaving a computer of any sort plugged in and switched on during the day can lead to incredibly large amounts of wasted electricity.

According to the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, an average desktop computer consumes 2.84 watts of power when switched off but left plugged in. A laptop, on the other hand, consumes 8.9 watts of power.

Leave it switched off and plugged in for an entire year, and you will have wasted 80 kilowatt-hours of electricity.

Even leaving just the laptop power adaptor plugged in for a whole year without a computer connected to it would wasted 40 kilowatt-hours.

It gets even worse if you leave your computer switched on but in sleep mode: an astounding 189 kilowatt-hours would be wasted in an entire year of computer sleeping.


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