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solarusmc

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Reply with quote  #1 
I recently purchased some multiple plugin 'energy efficient power smart strips' is what they're called.

The ones I picked up are made by: TrickleStar
http://www.tricklestar.com/us/products-1/advanced-powerstrips.html

THE 7 OUTLET MODEL
They come with 2 outlets that are 'always on outlets'
They have a 'control outlet' for items like TV and/or Computer.

and 4 'delayed ON' outlets. (Delayed ON outlets do not become live until the 'CONTROL OUTLET' is fired up.

They are designed so you can plug things into the 'always on' outlets that 'have' to be on all the time like your DVR and CABLE BOX.

as mentioned above..
The 4 'delayed ON outlets or 'standby outlets' do not become live until the 'CONTROL' outlet is live.

So as an example..

Let's say you have your TV plugged into the 'Control' outlet.
When you turn your TV ON the 'dealyed ON' outlets become LIVE allowing you to use/run anything that is plugged into the 'delayed ON' outlets like your Wii game or Surround Sound system.

Now, when you shut your TV off, all of those gagits that normally use energy sitting there (in standby mode) SHUT DOWN thus eliminating excess electrial useage.

They are really cool once ya get the jist of how they work.

I read somewhere that the Wii Game draws 120W of electrical draw even when it is turned OFF in standby mode.
My surround sound system and CD player also draws juice while in standby mode but NOT ANYMORE thanks to these new smart strip power outlets.

MY COMPUTER
Aside from my TV room I am also using a smart power strip at my computer now.

Previously, when I shut off my computer my residential phone, computer speakers, printer and computer monitor were 'always' STILL ON in standby mode drawing juice, but not anymore.

Now when I shut down my computer, my computer speakers, printer, monitor and residential telephone are all dead as a door nail.

Nice!
I hope those of you who have not yet discovered 'TrickleStar's smart power strips' check into them asap. You won't be sorry you did.

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gbwillson

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Reply with quote  #2 
Using a Watt meter, like a Kill-a-Watt, can also be used to track down energy hogs. Once identified, the culprits can be switched off or plugged into a smart switch.


Greg in MN
stmbtwle

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Reply with quote  #3 
The "smart strips" sound like a good device.  I'll have to check them out.  The Kill-a-Watt IMO is worth it's weight in electric bills [smile]


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Solar is like the wind. It may be free, but putting it to work isn't!
Willie, Tampa Bay
KevinH

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Reply with quote  #4 
Since smart power strips cost more, it is definitely a good idea to first see what the actual standby power usage is for each setup with a Kill-a-Watt meter.  That way you can calculate the savings and payback.  For me for example, shutting off 10W standby for 22 hours/day would save about $8.50 per year.  The controlling device such as the TV or computer will still be drawing power in standby mode (should be unplugged when checking standby power usage with the Kill-a-Watt).  It is only the other devices like a Blu-ray player, amplified speakers, game system, printer, etc where the savings will occur.  If they draw enough in standby, it would be worth the extra expense for the smart power strip.

Kevin H
MN
gbwillson

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Reply with quote  #5 
I also found some items that were not using nearly as much juice as I thought. My refrigerator runs constantly, to the point where I thought it was defective. I know fridges are often one of the biggest energy hogs in a home so I was rather miffed that I had purchased a lemon. Turns out, it is supposed to run all the time with the cooling unit being smaller and more efficient. 

Greg in MN
EcoMotive

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Reply with quote  #6 
I've never heard of a refrigerator that is supposed to run constantly. Is it one with one of those newfangled linear compressors?
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stmbtwle

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Reply with quote  #7 
If it runs full time it must have a variable-speed compressor. Otherwise how does it adapt to changing loads?

Either way a fridge is hard to estimate. The duty cycle (or compressor speed) and therefore power draw ,will vary from day to day even month to month.

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Solar is like the wind. It may be free, but putting it to work isn't!
Willie, Tampa Bay
gbwillson

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Reply with quote  #8 
It's several years old, but it is a high-end, energy efficient unit. When I called their tech service people they compared it to a car on the freeway. A 200 horsepower car only uses a small fraction of the total horsepower when cruising at a constant speed. So what they have done is essentially eliminated a good portion of the extra "horsepower" from the equation. It only draws 6 amps at startup, and it uses a little over 2 amps continuous if I recall. So Willie, you are right in that it does use extra power during startup. Maybe it like the new truck engines that turn off a few of the cylinders at cruising speeds. The only time my fridge is not running is when it powers down(at least the fan does) for an auto defrost cycle. I only noticed this when I noticed the sound of running water and expected to find a puddle, but instead, for a rather large drip pan. 

Greg in MN

stmbtwle

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Reply with quote  #9 
Starting a motor takes a lot of power, so a smaller compressor should save power by starting less often and running longer. If it reduces to "idle" instead of stopping, it might save even more. I suspect this is the philosophy behind the variable speed pumps in some hydronic systems.

On the other hand our car never idles, it shuts off instead, even at highway speed. You'd never notice it except for the indicator on the dash.

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Solar is like the wind. It may be free, but putting it to work isn't!
Willie, Tampa Bay
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