Phantom Power in Practice


The term phantom or vampire power was very newsworthy a few years ago. This concept refers to the small power draw from appliances that don’t turn off fully and use energy even when they aren’t really doing anything useful. An example might be a microwave using power to run it’s clock even when you aren’t using it to heat anything. In my apartment my phantom draw is about 100W. This seems really insignificant until you realise the cost implications.

There are approximately 8765 hours in a year. If we assume that my phantom draw is constant over the span of a year, then the phantom draw is using 876.5 kWh. At a price of $0.2376/kWh the phantom draw is costing me $208! This is almost half of what the Australian government said household’s would save with the repeal of the carbon tax.

In a future post I will attempt to hunt down these phantoms. And kill them.

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