Gexa Energy Learning Center

Not All Devices Need to Be Unplugged to Save Energy

Take a look around your home. Is every outlet being used —almost? In most kitchens, you will most likely find a toaster, a coffee maker, or a blender still plugged in even while it’s not being used.

However, did you know that even when not in use some electronics can still be consuming electricity? This is called phantom energy use or vampire electricity consumption. According to ENERGY STAR, the average U.S. household has more than 20 consumer electronic products. Using electricity efficient products and taking steps to conserve energy can save you electricity and even prolong the life of your electronics.

But which devices are worth unplugging and not? That’s right. Not all devices need to be actually unplugged. Here’s a short list of which ones you definitely need to unplug, and those you can leave plugged in.

Unplug them!

Small kitchen appliances

Of course, it wouldn’t be a good idea to unplug devices such as your refrigerator or dishwasher.  You should unplug coffee makers, food processors, blenders and toasters. When these devices have a digital clock you can bet they are consuming energy to help keep the clocks running.


Let’s face it, we all do it. From our cellphones, laptops, tablets to electric toothbrushes, we always have them plugged in. Electronic device chargers can add to your electric bill every minute they’re not charging. Be sure to unplug once your device reaches 100%.

Entertainment Systems

One of the biggest “energy vampires” is your entertainment system. Just think about all of the small LED lights blinking from the TV, cable box, DVD player and even your surround sound system. These devices are all consuming energy even if they’re all “OFF”. Try to commit to unplugging them. Using power strips for your entertainment systems is a big helper!


“Power Savers” and “Screen Savers” don’t save you energy. In fact, in order for those power modes to function they need electricity. Once your computer reaches 100% be sure to unplug it. Not only can this save you energy but it will prolong the life of your devices. This can also help avoid anything like a power surge from ruining your computer.

It’s ok, leave them plugged in!

Old, non-digital electronics

Today’s, digital devices are energy vampires for a reason. They contain so many lights and digital settings. However, older devices don’t usually have all of those features. So, old washing machines and electronics without any lights on after being “OFF” are still OK. Leave them plugged in and avoid missing your alarm from waking you in the morning.

Power strips

One device you probably want to leave plugged in and better yet, have more of — is power strips. These strips can help you unplug many devices with just one switch. Today, there are smart power strips that have scheduling and monitoring options to help keep your energy costs down.

For more helpful hints about how to save energy, visit Gexa Energy‘s website.