Something strange in your neighborhood?  

Halloween is almost here!

Soon, you’ll see little ghosts and goblins trick-or-treating in your neighborhood.

Frightening fact – most people don’t know they might have a house full of energy ghosts year-round!

They’re called phantom power loads, energy ghosts, or vampire appliances. These are appliances that continue draw power from electrical outlets even when turned off. Devices like phone chargers, hairdryers and even coffee makers can idly sip electricity from your outlet costing you money.

According to the Department of Energy, phantom power loads are responsible for approximately 5% of the energy consumed in the United States, costing electric customers nationwide more than $3 billion each year.

Hunting for energy ghosts

You can see them late at night, those little lights glowing on game consoles, cable boxes and other electronic devices all around your dark house. Turn off your lights at night to see where some of the energy ghosts lurk. Standby lights are the telltale signs that your power is slowly draining, even though the product isn’t in use.

Busting your energy ghosts – for good!

  • Use advanced power strips or smart plugs, which automatically cut power to devices that are not in use.
  • Enable power management “sleep” settings on home office equipment, such as computers and printers.
  • Unplug any rarely used electronic devices in your home. Outsmart those pesky energy ghosts! Unplug that coffee maker, microwave, small kitchen television, toaster oven and other unused appliances and you could save $10-20 per year.
  • To see an even bigger savings tap into PSE&G appliance rebates to purchase or upgrade to ENERGY STAR®-certified electronic devices/appliances. ENERGY STAR products are independently tested to use less energy than standard devices and they draw less phantom power.

No spook, haunt, or energy ghost will ever be safe again knowing that you’ve rid your home – and bills – of energy waste from phantom loads.

Rebecca Mazzarella, Lead Writer - PSE&G

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