Seriously! I have been hunting down phantom loads for months. With everything off. (At least from what I can tell) I am running at close to 500 Watts. Sure I am much better off then last year but this is starting to get annoying.

My DVR uses about 75Watts (need to check again). Home network stuff uses 15 Watts. Outside dusk-to-dawn lights only use 9Watts each for two of them. We leave one CFL on downstairs for a whopping 10Watts.

I need to cycle my fire alarms and watch TED. Maybe they are using 100W????? That would be 72 kW hrs a month? Research on my model states operating current is 50mA. That would be about 6 Watts. I have 7 units. So 42 Watts. Or 30kWhrs a month. That is equal to $36 a year. 9V batteries cost about 3 dollars. What if I just turned off the fire alarms. They have battery backup. This will require further investigation. I just would to be 100% sure I have working fire alarms!

What to do about the fish tank? It uses almost 2 kw hrs a day. Most of the usage is in the heater for the water. I have tiger barbs. They like the water at 77 degrees. I already have it set at 75 degrees. I have thought about just turning off the heater and seeing if they make it. Seems cruel. The basement temperature is always about 68 degrees year round. What I may do is find fish that don’t need the heater. If you think about it, the fish tank uses as much power as a refrigerator. Not cool. It uses almost 60 kW hours a month. Currently, that is 8% of my total consumption. If I had understood that I may never have purchased it in the first place, or at least fish that need a tank heater. I could always get guppies or gold fish. They don’t need a tank heater.

I have almost replaced all of my lights with CFLs. I have the lights in the two freezers. I have the lights in the over-the-range microwave. But I have a plan for those. I am going to buy dimmable candelabra bulbs. This is because they are small and the microwave has two light settings.

Still, at the end of the day I am missing something. Maybe I will cycle each circuit breaker in the box. Then I will look at TED. I also need to check idle power on some older electronics equipment. I just don’t see it adding up to anything close to 100W but I could be wrong.

For now, the hunt contiunes. I will route out all the ghosts. I will eliminate some and live with the others.

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