The Home Power Monitor --
How Power Monitoring Can Save You Money

By Dan Davenport

Do you know where the power that you consume every day is going?

A home power monitor can help you find the devices in your home that are consuming -- and in many cases, wasting -- power. Then stop it to save money and save power.

Attach simple, inexpensive home power monitor at the point where the electricity comes into your home and display how much power you are consuming. Some attach internally in the main power box for your home and monitor the power you draw from there, sending the information to a remote display (if you use this version, make sure you have a qualified person install it as opening the electric panel can be dangerous!). Others attach to the outside of the power meter for your home and send the readings from there. Either way, the information from the home power monitor is shown on a convenient hand held device, or a desk top display, or on your computer monitor and you get a reading of how much power you are drawing at any given instant. You can then start turning devices off to see how much power draw you can eliminate. Where the home power monitor gets interesting is when you think you have all of your appliances and electronics turned off. Then, you’ll see how the small amount of power consumed hour after hour by the various clocks, timers, cell phone and music player chargers, televisions, clock radios, VCRs, DVRs, DVD players, cable boxes, etc. and all the other small electronic devices around your home waste watts -- for which you pay -- all day and all night long. Here is a related article about Phantom Power Drain.

Switched Power StripPlug these chargers and the like into switched power strips so you can turn them off when they are not in use. For example, plug your cell phone and music player chargers into one strip that you turn on at night when you plug the devices in so they can charge overnight while you sleep, and turn it off in the morning when the devices are charged. Plug all of the computer accessories, printers, speakers, monitors -- even the computer itself, into another strip that you switch off when you shut down at night and turn on again in the morning.

The home power monitor will help you find and eliminate all these watt wasters to save you money on your utility bill, and save the natural resources needed to create that power.

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Here is a well reviewed and reasonably priced PowerCost Monitor from our partners at that will certainly start you saving money. Use it as a great step on the path to saving electricity and money at your home.

Then, the next step. Want to quickly do this right and make energy and money saving easy? My partners at also have two exciting switched power strips for you to choose from. Both let you keep the ugly tangle of wires hidden while still being able to turn the strip off and on conveniently and easily. And both use a convenient remote control to turn the strip - and the devices plugged into it - on and off. Keep the strip and the unsightly tangle of wires hidden from view but keep the switch right at hand.

One model, the Belkin BG108000-04 Conserve Energy Saving Surge Strip, has two unswitched outlets that make it ideal for your home entertainment system. You can leave components like the cable box always powered so they can update themselves as necessary while turning off the other components so they stop drawing unnecessary power. This switched power strip also includes surge supression to protect your valuable equipment.

The other, the Bye Bye Standby BBSBUSA Energy Saving Kit, does not have the unswitched outlets, so it is better suited for turning off the power to your monitor, speakers, and other computer related accessories. But it still uses a convenient remote control so you keep the unsightly tangle of wires completely hidden.

You may also want to take a look at how easily you can add wind and solar power to your home.

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