Many electronic devices have a small red lamp to indicate that they are “constantly ready”. While this is very practical, it also means that they are constantly using energy even when they’re not being used at all.

Depending on the devices in the household, when in stand-by mode they can result in costs of between 65 and 130 Euros per year. It is worth completely switching off all electrical devices that are not currently being used.

Hi-Fi, TV and other stand-by modes

  • TVs, stereo systems and also individual components often cannot be completely disconnected from the mains even after being switched off. This is indicated by the LEDs still being illuminated, or by it still being possible to switch the device back on with the remote control. The solution here is to use a switchable multiway connector and to also switch this off after switching off the device.
  • Some newer TVs have an Eco or Auto-off switch. This means that the device automatically switches to Stand-by mode after a certain time.
  • To be certain that your mobile phone’s charger is no longer consuming power after completing the charging operation, pull it out of the socket.

Some electrical devices constantly consume current when in Stand-by mode, to which little importance is generally attached. However, even devices without a Stand-by function consume current when in constant operation. The table below shows how much energy your “silent consumers” require each year. The values in the table are typical values. Precise measurements should be made using an ammeter. You can borrow these devices free of charge from Enovos!

DevicePower in watts (w)Consumption in kWh/aBasis of calculation
PC with monitor40708 hrs. / day - 220 days / year
Inkjet printer45798 hrs. / day - 220 days / year
Laser printer black & white25448 hrs. / day - 220 days / year
Scanner12218 hrs. / day - 220 days / year
Photocopier701238 hrs. / day - 220 days / year
Fax108824 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Answering machine32624 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Cordless phone65324 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Colour TV75120 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Satellite receiver97924 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Compact stereo system128820 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Video recorder86723 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Radio alarm1.51323 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Coffee machine - electronic clock21824 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Microwave - electronic clock incl. control electronics43524 hrs. / day - 365 days / year
Electric cooker - electronic clock incl. control electronics54424 hrs. / day - 365 days / year

Office equipment

When using a PC, the power consumption normally covers all aspects of data processing.

  • LCD monitors require only half as much energy as tube monitors
  • Switch off monitors when they are not in use
  • Use the PC’s power-saving function
  • Connect PCs, printers etc. to a switchable multiway connector and switch this off after all the devices have been switched off. This ensures that no device remains in standby mode and continues to consume power unnecessarily.
  • Screen saver to save electricity? On a PC monitor, calculating moving images sometimes consumes even more power. It is best to simply switch off the monitor during long pauses.
  • Do not switch on the printer and scanner until you want to use them – often they are hardly ever needed, but consume power.
  • In the case of PC components such as processors, graphics cards and sound cards, there are significant differences in power consumption depending on the model. Pay attention to energy efficiency when buying a new device or when retrofitting new components.
  • In contrast to desktop computers, laptops are generally more energy-efficient in order to prevent the processing performance from using up the battery charge too quickly.

Computers not only consume 5 – 100 W in stand-by mode, they also quietly continue to consume power when switched off.

Consumer electronics: tv-video-dvd-stereo

  • TVs employing traditional tube technology have very low connected loads and thus consume little energy.
  • LCD and in particular plasma screens on the other hand have much higher connected loads. This means that their electrical consumption is many times that of tube screens.
  • The image frequency situation is exactly the same: At 100 Hz as opposed to 50 Hz, the electrical consumption can easily be 30 % greater.
  • All consumer electronics appliances should be disconnected from the mains when not in use via a switchable multiway connector (see stand-by consumption).
  • TVs should not remain switched on as background animation throughout the day. As with lamps, you should make a habit of switching off the TV when it is not being watched.