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The Official Web Site of the State of South Carolina

Computers, Home Office Equipment, and Electronics

There are increasingly more electronics in our homes. From computers to tablets and cell phones, technology in the home has become a growing energy user.

ENERGY STAR-labeled office equipment is widely available. It can provide dramatic energy savings. Find ENERGY STAR products and standards.

Many appliances continue to draw a small amount of power when they are switched off. To avoid "vampire" loads, unplug electronics or use a power strip and use the switch on the power strip to cut all power to the appliances. Unplug battery chargers when the batteries are fully charged or the chargers are not in use.


Computers

If you wonder when you should turn off your personal computer for energy savings, here are some general guidelines to help you make that decision.

Though there is a small surge in energy when a computer starts up, this small amount of energy is still less than the energy used when a computer is running for long periods of time. 

For energy savings and convenience, consider the following guidelines:

  • Turn off the monitor if you aren't going to use your PC for more than 20 minutes.
  • Turn off both the CPU and monitor if you're not going to use your PC for more than 2 hours.

ENERGY STAR-labeled computers use less energy than computers without this designation, depending on usage. Consider buying a laptop for your next computer upgrade; laptops use much less energy than desktop computers.


Sleep Mode and Power Management Features

Many computers available today come with a sleep mode or power management feature. Learn how to activate the power management features on your computer.

Note that screen savers are not energy savers. Using a screen saver may, in fact, use more energy than not using one.

State of South Carolina
Office of Regulatory Staff
Energy Office
1401 Main Street, Suite 900
Columbia, SC 29201

(803) 737-0800