Use energy more efficiently, even if you rent
It may look like a classic surge protector power strip from the nineties but today’s new smart strips are different. For example, you can still plug in all your electronic devices, but smart power strips know when to reduce power use by shutting down the power automatically when devices go into standby mode. And, that cuts down on electricity waste, saving money and decreasing carbon output.
You've got options. Smart strips come in different styles but all pretty much provide plugs for three options: Always on, control and switched. Let’s go over these individually.
There are some things you’ll want to plug into the “always on” slots. They’re perfect for devices you want always running, like a wireless router.
Let’s take a look at the “control” slot. This is great for your computer. When you turn it off, it automatically turns off everything in the “switched” slots, too. So it stops phantom energy draw both from your computer and from those other devices.
The “switched” slots are great for devices that are usually used along with the device in the control slot — like how you might use speakers, a monitor and a printer along with your computer. When the computer in the control slot gets turned off, it stops the energy waste from these other items in the switched slots that are most likely no longer in use.
Find deals on smart strips and other energy-efficient products from the PGE Marketplace.
Use our free online Energy Tracker℠ tool to track your electricity use by hour, day or more. You can also get email or text alerts about your estimated bill or when it’s expected to exceed an amount you’ve set.
Practice thermostat control. Each degree you lower your thermostat in winter saves an estimated 2 percent on your heating bill. In winter, set it to 68 when you’re awake, 60 when asleep or gone. In summer, try 75 to 78 degrees to save on air conditioning.
Wash smarter. Use the Energy Saver mode on your clothes washer and dishwasher.
Set your water heater thermostat 120 degrees is perfect for savings and safety.
Don’t heat or cool unused rooms. If you have baseboard, wall units or other in-room systems, turn the heat down low when unoccupied to save energy and avoid mold and close the doors to keep heat where you want it.
Pull the shades. Window coverings help hold energy in and the heat or cold out.
Unplug energy “vampires” such as laptop and cell phone chargers as soon as you’re done using them. Otherwise, they suck energy even when not in use.
Turn off your computer and other home electronics when not in use. The default settings on most computers aren’t the most energy efficient. Adjust yours for efficiency.
Close your fireplace damper and doors when not in use. After a fire, let the fireplace cool completely before closing the damper.
Turn off ventilation fans in kitchen and baths. They pull warmed or cooled air out of your house, so turn them off after about 10 minutes or install a timer to ensure you don’t accidentally leave them on.
Put your money back in your pocket and efficient products in your home with discounts, incentives and special offers.