Have you ever wondered just how much energy that lamp was using?  Maybe you’d like to see how much power your computer pulls even when it’s in sleep mode.  kill-a-wattIf you’re curious or if you want to start charting your power consumption patterns in an attempt to cut down your electric bill, you may want to invest in a few of the Kill-A-Watt products.  These handy little monitors make it possible for you to see exactly where all of that energy is going.

To use the Kill-A-Watt, all you have to do is plug it in to an outlet.  The device has another plug on the front that you plug your actual device (lamp, computer, etc.) in to.  Once you’ve done that, use the device as you normally would.  Kill-A-Watt will monitor how much power your appliance draws.  Knowing this information is the first step towards assessing how energy efficient your appliances and devices are.

So what can you do with the information Kill-A-Watt provides?  A lot.  You can see just how much energy something draws even when it’s not turned on, which can tell you what appliances you need to unplug when they’re not in use.  You can also see which of your appliances aren’t as energy efficient as they should be, so you know what to replace first.  Finally, you can get an idea of how to save power.  Maybe it’s worth running your laptop off its battery more often than you’ve been doing.  Perhaps there’s a better lamp out there that provides more light but uses less power.  You never know until you see exactly how much energy your appliances actually burn.

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