smart spending

Don't stand by as devices sap standby power

Video game consoles and power-saving mode
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Your kids' video games are gulping power even when they're not being used, says Lane Burt, manager of building energy policy for Natural Resources Defense Council in Washington, D.C.

"(Video game) consoles can be off, but still use a lot of power because they're checking for updates," Burt says. "They can be on all the time and you don't even know it. Sometimes the only thing that happens when you turn it off is the LED changes color."

For example, the average game console in standby mode consumes $23 per year in electricity, Kielich says.

The Xbox 360 and Sony PlayStation have power-saving, auto-shutdown modes, but it's up to gamers to enable the mode to save energy and money, Burt says. For game consoles without an auto shutdown mode, plug the game into a power strip and turn the power strip off when the device isn't in use.




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