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Save power! - oldbloke's mutterings
November 15th, 2010
11:22 pm
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Save power!
So we inherited a smart powerstrip from L's dad.
It has 2 always-on sockets and 4 that are controlled by your tv/sat/whatever remote.
So you don't leave things on standby when they're not being used.
Except...
All 4 switch together. Which is worse, obviously, than the 6strip we had where they were all individually switched so we only had what we were using on at all, standby or otherwise. We had to walk over there and switch them manually, oh noes!, but frankly it made more sense. Of course now I realise it's less efficient than what we had I can't swap it back out until after the sat box has recorded the poker.
AND it tended to miss the signal, so you'd turn off the telly, the rest would stay on, so you hit the switch again and the telly comes back on then gets a really hard sudden loss of volts as the strip finally decides to go down. Rub, frankly. I spoze I could've programmed it to some other button, but stupidly I did what the manual suggested.


Now, where can I buy chocolate essence?

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From:oldbloke
Date:November 16th, 2010 12:12 am (UTC)
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Oh, now you've put the idea of a trip to Lakeland into L's mind...
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From:oldbloke
Date:November 16th, 2010 12:23 am (UTC)
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Absolutely not finding it on their website!

There's some on ebay...
(Deleted comment)
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From:vinaigrettegirl
Date:November 16th, 2010 04:10 am (UTC)
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Culpeper for choc essence.
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From:oldbloke
Date:November 16th, 2010 12:22 pm (UTC)
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Theirs looks like the real deal. The stuff on ebay is "chocolate flavouring essence" and has no alcohol in it, so I suspect it's Iffy with a capital I.
Ta.
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From:g8bur
Date:November 16th, 2010 10:38 am (UTC)
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Not at all surprised by the behaviour of the 'smart' power strip. As it itself contains a standby device, constantly awaiting a command to switch off, I wonder how much power that device uses - and does it also still draw power (even though a smart meter might not be able to measure it) after it has switched off its controlled sockets?

Here, the hi-fi kit has a manual master switch (a 13A fused spur unit controlling two four-way power strips) and the computer bench is fitted with three twin switched 13A sockets, controlled by a manual kitchen-style cooker master switch which also has a separate switched 13A socket on it (useful for charging the phone, standard rechargeable batteries, or other gadgets). Everything gets manually switched off before I go to bed.

The only devices in our house which draw power overnight are the fridge, the central heating controller, the answerphone, the DECT phone base unit and handset hods, and the clocks on the electric double oven and the microwave. The charger for the 12-volt house systems battery is always off overnight.
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From:oldbloke
Date:November 16th, 2010 10:44 am (UTC)
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They claim it uses 0.19W in its standby - a saving over leaving all your other equipment on standby, obviously, but we never did. And using it, we'd have stuff on standby we weren't using when it was on.
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From:g8bur
Date:November 16th, 2010 11:18 am (UTC)
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Had you bought it, it'd have taken some time to pay for itself (a tenner or so?), I reckon, even if all the equipment it controlled were always used as a set, and none were unnecessarily on standby just to allow power to those items in use.

If my maths are correct, and using the lower rate we paid in June this year for our electricity:

Smartstrip on standby:
0.00019kW * 24 * 365 = 1.664kWh * £0.102/kWh = £0.17 per year

Devices on standby;
Say 0.005kW total:

0.005 * 24 * 365 = 43.8 kWh * £0.102/kWh = £4.47 per year

less £0.17 = £4.30 saved per year, less the consumption of those items unnecessarily on standby with the smartstrip switched on.
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From:hooloovoo_42
Date:November 16th, 2010 01:20 pm (UTC)
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I have a similar device, but it has a remote on/off switch not linked to the telly/other device. I have the bulk of the computer stuff plugged into it. Stuff like the modem and the charger for my PDA are always on. CPU, monitor, external HD etc, get switched on when needed and are off rather than standby when not needed. At least all that stuff has to be on at the same time. The NAS drive is on a separate block, but only gets switched on if I'm using the drive.

For ordinary multiport extension blocks, I prefer individual switches.
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From:oldbloke
Date:November 16th, 2010 01:29 pm (UTC)
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Ah, the computer setup here is fairly efficient.
Mains feeds a 4way(individual) -
1.Router
2.System
3.Peripheral
4.Wap
'System' is 4way(unswitched) with the PC, Monitor, and Sound on it.
'Peripheral' is a 6way(individual) with three external drives and the printer and the cabinet lights. I use the spare for the vacuum cleaner when I'm doing the ground floor.
So we only have on what we need to when we need to.
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From:oldbloke
Date:November 16th, 2010 01:31 pm (UTC)
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NB Router is on its own switch in case we want to use the upstairs PC without the downstairs one being on
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From:anshackles
Date:November 16th, 2010 08:10 pm (UTC)
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frankly, I get a mite fed up with all these bloody crusaders who rattle on about how I kill the planet by leaving things on standby. Modern equipment, on standby, uses maybe 1 or 2 watts at most. To make the kind of sweeping statements like "leaving it on standby uses twice the energy of using it" makes unwarranted and usually specious assumptions about the usage pattern. A typical flat-screen telly probably uses 50-100 x the energy when in use than when on standby, so if for example you use it for less then an hour in 3 days, on average, then you might get somewhere near the same energy use on standby that you do when actually using it.

That's not to say that you don't save energy by turning it off, and in the case of something that's used only infrequently it's right to turn it off, provided of course that it will reliably remember any settings it needs to work...

however, there are many MUCH more energy-hungry things that people habitually do which would save a lot more energy.

and yes, we do have low-energy CF bulbs most everywhere... and a 6-way individual-switched thing for all the AV toys, like you describe.
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