Earth Day 2013: 5 gadgets that help make going green easy

3. Smart Strip Power Strip

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    The Smart Strip Power Strip fights off vampire draw, preventing electrical appliances and devices that are plugged in from using energy when they're not in use.
    Bits Limited
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One of the most common (and expensive) forms of wasted energy is "vampire draw" from electrical appliances that are not in use but still plugged in. Most devices still draw a little power when plugged in, even when they are turned off. 

There is a way, however, to reduce wasted energy and shrink your electric bill.

The Smart Strip Power Strip by Bits Limited can help you fight vampire draw and power down multiple products, according to its product description. This power strip offers power surge protection and line noise filtering, which eliminates most random fluctuations in electrical impulses that could potentially damage components of your systems.

That way, you don’t have to unplug every single appliance before leaving the house.

Jennifer Bergen of PC Magazine notes that power strips like the Bits Limited product can have a significant impact on how much energy we consume.

“Standby power consumption can comprise between five and 10 percent of your total household electric consumption, but using a smart strip can help you save between $100 and $150 a year,” she writes.

The product is unique in that it is divided into separate categories. The Smart Strip can turn off selected equipment within a category when it’s not in use. So if you have your TV, DVR, and DVD player plugged in together, you can turn one off and make the others power down as well.

The Smart Strip Power Strip has a 6-foot cord, and it is backed by a two-year warranty, according to the Bits Limited website. It starts out at $39.95.

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