Watt Smart Holiday Tips
Rocky Mountain Power has some bright ideas for saving energy this holiday season and throughout the winter months.
Lots of people will give and receive electronics, like big screen televisions or gaming systems, but those are gifts that can also mean big power consumption.
Maria O'Mara, for Rocky Mountain Power, says there are some simple things you can do to conserve.
"The gifts that we buy that use a lot of electricity are the ones that I called the Grand Finale gifts. The ones that gets everyone really excited. The ones that you open at the end. They're the new gaming systems, the Xbox, the big screen TVs. And these are units that are on, pretty much, 24-7. People plug them in and leave them not just plugged in but turned on and then you forget to turn them off."
She says the first thing to do starts when you shop. Look for the Energy Star rating when you make the purchase of a new TV or gaming system.
But there's also a gadget that can help. Its called a 'smart' power strip and it can help you in remembering to shut stuff off when your done by including a timer or sensor in the strip, "because of the gaming systems and entertainment systems that people use and then forget to turn off or unplug, that's where these smart strip surge protectors can be really helpful. Not just protecting you from some sort of electrical storm, these new strips can kind of be your eyes and ears if you forget to turn things off."
The 'smart' surge protector power strips cost a little more, but because so many of these new electronic systems come with standby, making for a continuous drain on your power, shutting things off when your done can make a difference.
"About 15 to 20 percent of our overall electricity use in our home, comes from all of those small appliances. So if you can unplug them when they're not in use, that can be a significant savings."
Wyoming Rocky Mountain Power customers can go to Wattsmart.com for more information on these and other ideas.