Energy Vampires: Are they attacking your home? - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Energy Vampires: Are they attacking your home?

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POLAND, Ohio -

If your meter is spinning faster than you would like, somewhere lurking in the darkest corners of your home energy vampires could be to blame.

"This is electricity that is being stolen as our days go on... and we don't think about it," said Daniel Good from Good's Electric.

More often than not, it's the little things that stay plugged in all day long. The U.S. Department of Energy says that can eat up a solid ten percent of your electric bill.

If you look around the house, anything with a light on, a clock, even a charger for your phone or tablet is drawing power in some way. So we ran a little experiment, shutting off all the major appliances in the house, the furnace, televisions, and everything else you would expect to make the meter run.

The surprise: the meter was still turning, albeit slowly, which means something is still pulling power in the house.

"You're like, you hit the power button, it's off," said Good. "Well, you see the red light on it? It's not off. And anything that has a remote is not off because it still has electricity, it's using electricity... and it's on standby in all reality."

Daniel Good's been running Good's Electric for 16 years. He says, it's easy to tell someone to unplug a TV or a charger, but it's also convenient to have them ready to go. That's where newer power strips can make a difference.

"Maybe you have a TV in the basement that nobody ever uses. Well, unplug it, or get the power strip that automatically turns it off," said Good.

Another way to make your bill go down, is to look up. Swapping out your old lightbulbs for LED's, especially for lights that stay on for hours, can make a big difference.

"The new ones are saving 70 to 90 percent of the energy from what the old ones took," said Good.

The big ticket items are still king, though. Keeping your furnace, AC, and fridge running smoothly should be top priorities.

"As much money as you save with one of those in a year, some of these appliances, you'll save per month the same amount," said Good.

If you really want to up your game, go with a programmable thermostat.

"Programmable thermostats is a great way that you can start saving money today," said Good.

"They're going to cost you more in the beginning... but in the end you're going to see immediately a cost drop in your energy plans," said Ronda Crawford from Lowe's in Boardman.

Add them all up and you'll slow down that meter and maybe put those energy vampires back in the coffin for good.

Good says, there are couple things you should never unplug like your internet router or your DVR, if you want to keep recording shows. He also says, having an electrician come out and check your furnace every fall, or your AC every spring, can catch problems before they pop up.
   

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