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Slay energy vampires to reduce your power bill

There are vampires in your home all the time, not just Halloween. Only these are bleeding your wallet dry.

SAN ANTONIO — Energy vampires look ordinary and harmless.

“It’s a modem, router, a microwave. Even your phone chargers,” said John Moreno of CPS Energy.

They have an insatiable thirst for power. Their constant, silent sucking is costing you.

“The average American has so many different gadgets at home, from your office, your entertainment system, your cable box in every bedroom, your mobile chargers; even all those big appliances and small kitchen appliances,” said Andrea Woroch, a smart shopping expert. “The problem is when you leave them plugged in, they continue drawing electricity even in the off mode. The Department of Energy estimates that this wastes about 10% of energy. So you’re overpaying every month on that electricity bill.”

You cannot kill energy vampires with stakes or garlic. Instead, it's much easier to unplug the appliances or chargers you are not using.

“I’ve actually been to homes where people have their appliances unplugged on the countertop, whether it be the coffee maker or the blender,” Moreno said.

Or make it easy to slay several energy vampires all at once.

“You can look into smart power strips, which will allow you to turn all those things off at once, even remotely if it’s Wi-Fi-enabled,” Moreno said.

“The best thing you could do is go around and unplug all your gadgets when they’re not in use, but I know this could be a pain," Woroch added. "The alternative is to use a power strip then you just simply switch that power strip off to cut the energy consumption completely off. That makes it really easy to cut off those energy hogs."

One of the biggest energy vampires lurks just out of sight: Above you.

“A lot of homes will run ceiling fans all day long,” Moreno said. “Ceiling fans can cost you anywhere from half a penny to a penny an hour. Ceiling fans are really meant to either cool you or warm you when you are in the room. If you’re not in the room, it’s best to turn them off and avoid that extra cost.”

You have the ability to stop phantom power for good, but remember: There are appliances you should always leave plugged in, including your refrigerator, water heater, and heater/air conditioner. 

If you have a question for Eyewitness Wants To Know, email us at EWTK@Kens5.com or call us as 210-377-8647.

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