Simple steps such as using power strips or unplugging chargers can make a
BATON ROUGE, La. – With Halloween
fast approaching, Entergy’s Louisiana utilities are encouraging customers to be
on the lookout for phantoms – phantom power, that is.
Phantom power, also known as standby
or vampire power, is the energy used by certain appliances and electronic
devices, even when they are turned off. A variety of products and appliances,
such as televisions, microwaves and cell phone chargers, use phantom power.
While it may seem trivial, the amount of wasted energy can add up over time and
show up on monthly utility bills.
According to the
U.S. Department of Energy, appliances and home electronics can account for
as much as 20 percent of a typical monthly bill. And approximately 75 percent of
the electricity used to power those products is consumed when the products are
“Phantom power can be compared to
having a leaky faucet,” said Steven Scheurich, vice president of customer
service and external affairs for Entergy Louisiana, LLC and Entergy Gulf States
Louisiana, L.L.C. “A few drips may not seem like a big deal but they can add up
to a larger water bill over time. Similarly, appliances and electronics that
draw power even when you aren’t using them can add to your monthly power bill.
Fortunately there are some simple ways to control phantom power and help you
Anything with a plug, a glowing light
or a display can be phantom power users. The most common culprits include
electronics with remote controls, built-in clocks or timers and instant-on
features such as television, computers, printers, video game consoles and DVD
A study by the National Resources Defense Council showed that some cable TV boxes, which
are often left on all day, can use as much power as a refrigerator. Other common
phantom power users are appliances and household items that are charged through
a wall plug such as digital cameras, power tools, cell phones and MP3 players.
Here are some simple steps that can help you take control over phantom power:
Purchase an advanced power strip
and plug appliances into it.
Unplug small transformers
(battery chargers and power adapters) when products are fully charged or not
in use. Small transformers come with many electronics such as cell phones
and electric shavers and plug into standard wall outlets.
Check the label. If purchasing an
Energy Star-labeled product, choose the model that uses the least amount of
phantom power. If the amount isn’t listed on the label, visit the U.S.
Department of Energy’s
online database to view manufacturer-supplied data by category.
For more information on energy
conservation and a variety of money-saving tips, visit
Entergy Louisiana, LLC and Entergy
Gulf States Louisiana, L.L.C. serve more than one million customers across
Louisiana. With operations in southern, central and northeastern Louisiana, the
companies are part of Entergy Corporation’s electric system serving 2.8 million
customers in Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi and Texas.