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Plug the Power Drain

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Computer Energy Use

Energy is invisible unless carried by light, yet we can see and hear its use in many ways. Look for glowing screens in vacant cubicles, meeting rooms that are brightly lit after adjournment, and computer peripherals that hum long after the computer shuts down…someone pays for that tune.

If you give your computers a break, they will give utility costs a break. Check the system settings on each machine.  Often you will find that sleep mode can be configured for the workstation and each separate monitor.

Sleep mode cuts energy consumption in half, which can save $75 per computer, per year.

Energy Savings

In the Internet of Things (IoT), every desk lamp, printer, and office radio will be connected and controlled by computer. If the IoT hasn’t reached your workplace, consider an energy-saving investment in smart strips.

Smart strips are more colorful than their less-intelligent predecessors, power bars. Red outlets (known as constant hot) work just like the classic beige ones. When you switch off any device plugged to the blue (control) outlet, the remaining (switched) outlets turn off automatically.

Light Sensors

Today’s light switches have built-in sensors. Some types switch lights on and off based on occupancy, time of day, and the amount of ambient light in that room.

One type, the vacancy sensor, is manually switched on and automatically turns the lights off after a pre-set period of inactivity.

An Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) study found that sensor-equipped light switches bring energy savings of up to 60%.