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Green Basics

Lighting and Phantom Loads

Lighting and Phantom Loads Offer Opportunities for Energy SavingsUPDATED 10/21/2011


Look for opportunities to cut consumption

Both lighting and non-appliance plug loads are easy targets for conservation. Lighting accounts for nearly 9% of residential energy consumption. Getting rid of incandescent bulbs, which produce mostly heat, and switching to compact fluorescents or light emitting diodes (LEDs) means instant savings.

Phantom loads represent the current that computers, telephones, entertainment systems and other devices draw even when they are turned off. For the most part, it’s a waste.

The current that keeps these devices in standby mode so they power up quickly may seem like a trickle. But by sheer volume, these electronic gizmos use more power than many homeowners would guess.

It may not be obvious when a device is drawing power on the sly, but there are a couple of easy and effective ways to deal with the problem.

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