Tag Archive for: How to Reduce Phantom Power Drain with Electrical Upgrades

How to Reduce Phantom Power Drain with Electrical Upgrades

How to Reduce Phantom Power Drain with Electrical Upgrades

How to Reduce Phantom Power Drain with Electrical Upgrades


Our collective reliance on electronic devices is still growing, despite how prevalent they already are in day-to-day life. From smartphones to laptops, televisions to kitchen appliances, our homes and workplaces are filled with gadgets that make life easier and more convenient. However, what isn’t totally common knowledge is that when these devices are turned “off”, they’re not really “off” and are continuing to drain power, contributing to something known as phantom power drain.

These occurrences can happen at the domestic level, with the main culprits being chargers and entertainment consoles, and at a larger commercial scale such as computers and printers that make up most office furniture. When you consider your own TV or console you might think the impact can barely be felt, but really they’re all just drops in the ocean, and this particular ocean is growing wider and deeper with each year as these devices become more and more ubiquitous.

Understanding Phantom Power Drain

You may have heard the term “standby power” or a personal favourite, “vampire power”, but what it is exactly is the energy that’s consumed by electronic devices even after you’ve hit the power off button. As stated above,  the energy consumption may seem negligible on a single device level, when multiplied by the myriad devices in a typical household or commercial building, multiplied over a population’s sprawl, it can add up significantly over time.

Common Culprits of Phantom Power Drain



Many modern TVs consume power even when they’re switched off in order to maintain features like instant-on functionality or to power standby lights.


Chargers for laptops, smartphones, and other devices often draw power even when not actively charging the device. Especially when left plugged in so they don’t end up lost!

Kitchen Appliances 

Microwaves, coffee makers, fridges etc, basically all other kitchen appliances with digital displays or standby modes can contribute to phantom power drain.

Entertainment Systems

Game consoles and sound systems are the main entertainment systems that may continue to draw power from the outlet to maintain settings or to be ready for remote activation – such as being able to switch on consoles with their controller.

Solutions to Reduce Phantom Power Drain

There are fortunately several strategies and electrical upgrades available to help reduce phantom power drain and, most importantly, lower energy bills. Smart plugs are an excellent and convenient solution for the discerning electricity consumer, as users can easily turn them off completely when not in use which eliminates the vampire draining.

Other people may opt instead to seek out energy-efficient models of new appliances when researching their next purchase, such as models that have low standby power consumption. Another feature you could keep an eye out for are surge protectors, which are not only designed to protect your electronics from power surges; they can also help reduce phantom power drain. Some surge protectors feature energy-saving outlets that automatically cut power to devices when they are not in use.

Commercial Buildings: Managing Phantom Power Drain at Scale

Domestic power drain is itself something to consider for households, however it can be an even greater issue for commercial buildings. Large businesses often have extensive networks of electronics, from computers and printers to air conditioners and lighting controls, and managing phantom power drain in such environments requires a comprehensive approach and specialised expertise.

There are commercial electrical upgrades and solutions tailored to reducing phantom power drain and can make a significant difference in energy efficiency and cost savings for businesses. An expert in this field is Wilken, who specialise in providing tailored solutions for big businesses. They offer a range of services, from energy audits to electrical system upgrades, all aimed at optimising energy usage and reducing operational costs for businesses. They’re also a great resource if you’re looking for some expert advice, as they’re a market leader in the NSW Electrical Contracting, Engineering, Contestable Works – ASP/1 (Accredited Service Provider) and Private High Voltage market.

By partnering with experts like Wilken, you are doing your due diligence as a business owner, as with their knowledge and accreditations, businesses can identify areas of inefficiency and implement targeted solutions to reduce phantom power drain. The bottom line receives the most benefit, but also ensures that businesses align with sustainability goals by reducing energy consumption and environmental impact overall.

Prioritising Consumption and Efficiency

Once the concept of phantom power drain has been understood, and how rarely the most common of electrical devices are ever truly “off”, it’s clear to see how it’s a hidden source of energy waste affecting both households and commercial buildings alike, like a vampire draining life forces in the shadows. Fortunately, a bit of knowledge in how to overcome the phantom power drainers means simple implementations of electrical upgrades; such as smart plugs, surge protectors and energy-efficient devices are relatively easy to acquire for domestic purposes for individuals. On a business level, businesses can take proactive measures in reducing energy consumption and lower their utility bills.

Large businesses with complex electrical systems can find huge benefits by partnering with experts like Wilken; from invaluable guidance, to large-scale solutions to tackle phantom power drain. By prioritising energy efficiency and sustainability, businesses can protect their bottom line as well as contribute to a greener, more sustainable future.