Many times we leave our gadgets Mobile phones, PDAs, MP3 players, Cameras, Laptops etc with charger plugged in overnight. Lets check if this is a major waste of energy..
What happens if you leave the mobile phone plugged in all night?
According to measurements from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the average cell phone draws 3.68 watts of power from the outlet while it’s charging and 2.24 watts when charged. Let’s take the worst-case scenario and assume that you’re over-juicing a charged battery for the entire night. Leave the average phone plugged in for eight unnecessary hours, and it’ll use about 0.018 kilowatt-hours of electricity. Do that every night for a week, and the figure rises to 0.13 kWh; every night for a year, and you’re looking at a grand total of 6.5 kWh of electricity.
What if you leave your phone charger plugged in all the time, even when the phone itself isn’t attached—how much vampire power would that suck up? Again using the Berkeley Lab figures, if the average charger is plugged in for the entire 8,760 hours of the year, it’ll use about 2.3 kWh of electricity.
Your iPod or Zune probably isn’t worth worrying too much about, either: According to Chris Calwell, the founder of energy efficiency consulting firm Ecos, digital music players only draw about 0.25 to 0.4 watts when fully charged.
What about laptops? If you got yours in the last few years, it may not be much of a nighttime energy hog. According to figures from the University of Pennsylvania’s IT department—which looked at several laptops purchased between 2005 and 2009—today’s laptops draw between one to three watts when switched off but plugged in, and roughly the same amount in sleep mode. That puts them in about the same ballpark as cell phones. A laptop that’s idle, but not asleep, will draw closer to 15 to 20 watts.
Given that the average American’s residential electricity consumption is more than 4,000 kWh each year (PDF), the Lantern doesn’t think that a handful of kilowatt-hours are worth much tossing and turning. You could do way more for the planet, for example, by swapping out a single incandescent light bulb in your home for a compact fluorescent one; as the Lantern pointed out in a previous column, that simple action alone can save 126 kWh a year. Plus, charging your gadgets while you sleep has the added benefit of shifting a tiny fraction of your energy usage from the daytime, when demand is highest, to the nighttime, making things just a bit easier on your local grid.
As Cambridge professor David MacKay notes in his book Sustainable Energy—Without the Hot Air, obsessively unplugging your charger is like “bailing the Titanic with a teaspoon.” By all means, do it, he says, “but please be aware how tiny a gesture it is.” (He goes on to note that, according to his calculations, keeping your phone charger unplugged for a year saves as much energy as skipping a single hot bath.)
Read more at the source of this article.
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