Turn It Off: All the Way Off


When it comes to gadgets, simple is better. At least for me. I never was much of a geek, to be honest, and I sometimes have trouble with simple instructions, often creating not-so-simple problems that require (if I’m lucky) simple solutions. With that in mind, here’s the simple story of the Belkin Conserve Socket Power Timer.

This little device turns stuff off. Gets to the root of the issue, really, as for all intents and purposes it unplugs plugged-in stuff when it’s plugged in. Okay, so it’s simpler than I’m making it out to be. The gadget basically acts as a timer for your electro-stuff, shutting off power – including standby power – after a time interval that you select.

To use it, just plug it into a socket and then plug your device, in turn, into its outlet. Then set its little timer for either 30 minutes, three hours or six hours and that’s it. Whatever is plugged in gets cut off from the juice when it’s had enough. This is good for all sorts of stuff, like coffee makers, irons, phone chargers, even television sets.

The Conserve Socket Power Timer’s reason for being is that many electronics and appliances suck electricity even when they’re not being used. This waste is sometimes referred to as vampire energy or standby power and, as pointed out by our pals at Good, adds up over time. Put on your times-millions-of-devices-times-millions-of-households hat and, well, doing the math is pretty simple – that’s a lot of suck.

Scott Adelson

Scott Adelson is EcoSalon's Senior Editor of HyperKulture, a monthly column that explores opening cultural doors to initiate personal change. He is also the author of InPRINT, which reviews and discusses books, new and old. You can reach him at scott@adelson.org.