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  • Chris Burns
    Director of Energy Services
    802-865-7300 | Contact
    Burlington Electric Department
    585 Pine Street
    Burlington, Vt. 05401
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    Turn Things Off!

    Getting control of your usage
    Turn it Off!
    Listen to the "Bright Ideas Burlington" podcast. Chris and Brian discuss the many benefits of our Usage Tracker.

    In February's Energy Efficiency calendar illustration, Zuzu Z. hit it out of the park with a drawing about turning off TVs, lights and fans when they're not needed.  My dad would have loved this picture as I still hear him hollering at us kids to do exactly this from decades ago. This is another "old-school" strategy that can really save energy and money on the monthly bill! Today, we can go "new-school" and use power strips to make this all easier.

    Beware Phantom Loads!

    But turning things off isn't always enough. So you don't have to wait a minute or so for the TV to warm up, the standby power, which is often 20 to 30 Watts, is being used all the time — even when the TV is off. Unlike the intermittent use of most appliances, standby phantom loads are running 24/7. Phantom load in the United States costs consumers $3 billion a year. It is an easy place to start saving.

    Smart Strip

    An advanced power strip makes it easy to turn your entire media center off when you are not watching TV or gaming.  Save energy and money: as much as $100 per year by avoiding standby load for game consoles alone.  In my Burlington home, the TV, cable box, game station, etc. are all plugged in to one power strip so it's very easy for the family to turn it all off at once. 

    Take control of your usage

    Use BED's Usage Tracker tool to track your daily usage and to see how you are doing. Most folks are very surprised to learn how much energy their home uses in the middle of the night and phantom loads are often the cause! Signing up is free and easy.

    Zuzu Z.