For all you phantom load haters, vampire power fighters and idle current killers: check out GreenSwitch, a new wireless home energy control system. With the flick of a switch, you can turn off all the electronics in your home that aren't being used, effectively cutting off all standby power from your TV, stereo, lights and other devices that draw power whether or not they're actually switched on (somewhat reminiscent of this concept). Originally developed for the hotel industry, GreenSwitch has crossed over to the residential market, and it gets the "Ed Begley Seal of Approval," appearing on his TV show, Living with Ed, earlier this week.
The GreenSwitch people say that it has saved some of their hotel users 25% to 45% in energy costs, making the payback period pretty reasonable (less than two years). Anything we can do to put a stake through the heart of vampire power is a good thing, for sure. The full release is below the fold. ::GreenSwitchNew Energy-Saving Technology Shuts Off All Standby Power In a Home with Just One Switch
SACRAMENTO, California –A new energy saving product hit the U.S. residential home market this month, providing homeowners the ability to effortlessly and expediently turn off all electronics not being used throughout a home with just one master switch. The new energy management system, GreenSwitch ™, is completely wireless and can be retrofitted in an existing home or added during new construction.
The GreenSwitch™ system was originally developed to control energy consumption in the hotel industry. Properties using the GreenSwitch ™ system such as Kalahari Resorts, Orchard Garden, Embassy Suites, Westin, Holiday Inn and others, have saved 25 to 45% in energy costs, according to Gregory Hood, chief executive officer of GreenSwitch ™. With those kinds of savings, many of the hotels were recovering their investment in just 10 months to two years, according to Hood.
"It is such an easy and convenient system to use, we knew that the next logical step was to introduce it to homeowners who would appreciate the convenience of having just one switch to flip off instead of running around the house to turn off everything," said Hood.
Once the switch is turned off, a wireless signal is sent to all the GreenSwitch™ slave components including the wall plugs, light switches and thermostat. All the designated light switches and wall plugs will turn off, while the home's air conditioning/heating system will automatically set to the unoccupied mode. The unoccupied mode is predetermined by the homeowner during the installation of GreenSwitch ™.
Placed by the front door, the last one to leave the house simply switches the GreenSwitch ™ to the off position. Upon returning home, wall plugs and air conditioning/heating systems will return to normal mode just by flipping the GreenSwitch ™ to the on position.
GreenSwitch ™ can be overridden, so even when it is on, all the light switches act independently and can be operated normally. The consumer chooses which switches and wall receptacles will be part of the system, so fax machines and other electronics that need constant power would not be added.
"We also provide split receptacles, so if you have an alarm clock and a light switch in the same outlet, your alarm clock can stay on while the light goes off," said Hood. "We tried to think of everything to make this system as easy and convenient as possible."
GreenSwitch™ has signed an exclusive, long-term license with the producers of HGTV's LIVING WITH ED and actor and environmental activist Ed Begley, Jr. to endorse the product nationwide. Begley and his wife Rachelle Carson recently installed a GreenSwitch ™ in their home. "It allows us to have a master shut off to all of the programmed outlets, so we can shut down TVs and other things that draw power even when they're not in use," said Begley.
Carson is relieved that it will cut down on her husband's nagging to turn off the lights before she dashes out of the house. "It's real easy to use, like it's very idiot-proof," she said.
"One of our main priorities in developing GreenSwitch™ is its convenience, because bottom line, we are hoping that as a result of its simplicity, people will use it to save energy and save money," said Hood. "You don't realize how much standby power you are using in your house. Just look around your home and see how many red and green lights are on." According to the United States Department of Energy, 10 to 15 percent of a home's electricity use is just from electronics on standby mode alone.
"I want to be a part of any product that helps me become a proactive partner in reducing energy consumption and creating a healthier environment. GreenSwitch ™ is going to be an important tool in helping me achieve that illusive goal of getting off-the-grid, or this close to it," Begley says, indicating a small space between his thumb and finger.
GreenSwitch™ can be purchased online at GreenSwitch.tv. The cost can vary depending on the homeowner's needs and size of home. By building their own system, the homeowner is given the ability to control their cost.
Installation can also be completed by the homeowner, or by the GreenSwitch ™ dedicated team available with ongoing support and service.
For more information on GreenSwitch™ , consumers can access the call center 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by calling toll free 1-800-925-5103. A GreenSwitch™ expert will be more than happy to answer questions and put together a custom quotation for a property.