Vampires have never had a good press and deservedly so. Vampires in your home suck the life out of the environment and at least a tenner each month out of your pocket – and you may need the services of the highly rated London tradesmen from our tradesmen´s directory to get rid of them.
What we are talking about are gadgets which consume “Vampire Power” – a term first used in the States to refer to the energy used by domestic appliances left on standby overnight. The wasted power consumed by appliances such as TVs, computer equipment and mobile phone chargers in the UK not only costs you money, but indirectly causes the release of millions of tones of CO2 emissions into the environment.
How to Slay Vampires
It sounds easy to say that all that you have to do is to turn off all your electrical appliances each night, but how many of us do that? The reason that these gadgets have a standby facility is for convenience to the consumer and not only is it inconvenient to remove the plug each night, it is a pain to plug them all back in when you next want to use them. However, if you place your hand on a mobile phone charger that has been left all night, you will feel the heat coming from it – heat which has been generated by electricity way after your mobile phone has finished charging. This is electricity that you are paying for and not using. Not only is this a waste of money, but causes needless energy to be generated by power plants which are a major contributor to high levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, pollution and global warning.
Your local tradesman can suggest a number of effective devices that remove the element of inconvenience and help you save money by using less power in your home. These include power strips that enable you to turn off multiple devices with just the flick of a switch – you can even have a switch fitted by a local tradesman adjacent to your light switch so that you disconnect the power as you turn off the lights in the evening. Not only does this mean that you are not inconvenienced by switching off all the gadgets in your home, it also reduces the risk of fire breaking out.
You might even want to consider having timing devices fitted by your local tradesman to your electrical sockets so that you do not even have to worry about remembering to disconnect your power supply, and for the very technically advanced, you can even ask a local tradesman to install a program on your computer that controls the timings for all the electrical appliances in your home. For those that have Internet access via your mobile phone, all you have to do is press one key on your mobile to turn off all your power wasting appliances and put those vampires to bed!
How much difference does it make?
In turns of saving the environment, individually very little. But here are some statistics that an energy-conscious local tradesman would be able to confirm:-
- One computer left on all day results in the emission of 1500 pounds of carbon dioxide in a year. It takes up to 500 trees to absorb that amount of extra carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere.
- A video recorder left on standby uses 80% of the electricity consumed when it is actually playing.
- If everyone in the UK turned off their TV overnight it would save more than £66 million in electricity bills each year.
- Incredibly, stereos and radios left with the little red light on, account for over 1.6 million tonnes of carbon emissions each year. Based on the computer scenario above, that amount of carbon released into the atmosphere requires over 2.35 million trees to soak it up – more than are planned in London in the next fifteen years.
For more details about the volume of carbon we pump into the atmosphere, there is a news item on the BBC you may find of interest, you can visit the Energy Saving Trust web site or speak to one of the local tradesmen familiar with energy saving issues and are featured in our tradesmen´s directory.
How Much Will I Save?
It is difficult to put a definitive figure on your potential savings because so many homes use different appliances and of these, some will be older and less energy efficient. However, a report prepared by the University of Strathclyde calculated that the energy wasted through appliances left on standby in an average home amounted to 525Kw per year. At current electricity prices in London, that amounts to £99.75 per year for the average household. If you have children, it is likely to be much higher.
Plus there are other considerations to take into account. We have already mentioned the heat that is generated from a mobile phone charger when it has been in use. All of your electrical appliances are a source of heat, and by switching them off when not in use you will also save money on the cost of cooling your home during the summer months. Furthermore, if using a power strip with a surge detector, you will eliminate the possibility of damage to your appliances when they are switched on through a spike in voltage.
It is always financially worth speaking with a local tradesman about energy saving devices. Some electrical changes in the home required Part P Approval by a qualified engineer – particularly in the bathroom and kitchen – and the highly rated tradesmen featured in our tradesmen´s directory are always happy to pay a visit to your home to advise you on the most efficient way to rid your house of the vampires, help the environment and save you money – with not a clove of garlic in sight!