Expert shares surprisingly simple hack to shave money off your next electric bill: ‘It adds up’

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Want to trim your electric bill and your carbon footprint? One of Bloomberg’s TikTok accounts, Bloomberg Originals (@bloombergoriginals), shared a simple hack that can help you do both.

The scoop

As explained in the viral video, many appliances and devices around your home continue to draw a small amount of energy even when turned off. This standby power, often called “vampire energy,” sneakily adds to your monthly utility costs.

@bloombergoriginals Looking to save #money on your electric #bill ? Here’s a #hack — unplugging. #savings #moneyhack #moneytip ♬ original sound – Bloomberg Originals

To slay those energy vampires, Bloomberg Originals suggests unplugging devices like desktop computers, game consoles, and coffee makers when not in active use.

“There are appliances that contribute to our quality of life, like your water system, and our security, like your security system, that are difficult to unplug and sometimes even dangerous to disconnect,” the video’s narrator notes. “But being more aware of what you have plugged in and idling can save you money and also help the environment.

“Things like your desktop computer, game console, and coffee maker use a minimal amount of energy when not in use, but it adds up.”

How it’s helping

Every little bit of wasted energy adds up over time — for both your wallet and the planet. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that vampire energy is responsible for up to 10% of the average household’s electricity use.

Cutting out that costly waste could shave $100 or more off your annual utility bill. Considering Americans spend around $1,600 per year on electricity alone, those savings are nothing to scoff at.

What’s more, slashing your standby power consumption means less dirty energy needs to be burned in the first place. Collectively, vampire energy devours nearly 64 billion kilowatt-hours each year in the U.S. and releases 44 million metric tons (48.5 million tons) of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Driving a stake through its heart is a simple way we can all help usher in a cooler, cleaner future.

Beyond unplugging, investing in smart power strips and energy-efficient appliances can help you take an even bigger bite out of your energy use (and bills). For more budget-friendly tips, check out our guide to building a smart, low-waste home.

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What everyone’s saying

TikTok users were quick to weigh in with their thoughts on this money-saving, planet-helping hack.

“Nice,” one commenter simply wrote — we agree.

Others pointed out potential pitfalls, like increased wear-and-tear on plugs from repeated connecting and disconnecting. As one viewer quipped: “This only works if you won’t turn it back on in 15-20 minutes! Otherwise it costs more money.”

At the end of the day, being mindful of your energy use is what’s most important. Every vampire you can vanquish puts more green in your pocket and less carbon in our skies — and that’s a win-win we can all get behind.

Join our free newsletter for easy tips to save more, waste less, and help yourself while helping the planet.

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