Electrician Advises You to Unplug Your Electronics and Save Energy

In these tough economic times, saving money by any means can really help individuals and families. Unplugging electronics and appliances when they’re not in use can save money and it also helps to conserve energy. This is important for any family that is eco-conscious or that could use a few extra dollars at the end of the month. An electrician recommends unplugging all appliances and electronics when they’re not being used and the money saved might be more than you would think.

Unplug It: Energy Savings Add Up

Many people don’t realize just how much of their energy consumption is taking place when their appliances are plugged in but not in use. In fact, the government’s Energy Star program warns individuals that 40% of energy consumption is from appliances and electronics that are plugged in and not turned off. This translates to a huge portion of your electric bill and according to one Berkeley study; you could reduce your bill by 6% to 26%. In fact, most homes have approximately 19 appliances and electronic devices that operate on standby power. Typically, the larger the home is, the more energy there is that can be saved by eliminating standby power.

Hunt Standby Power Appliances

You don’t have to be an electrician to find energy savings in your home. Go through your home and write down the appliances and electronic devices that are always plugged in, even when they’re not in use. The most common “standby energy” appliances and devices are the cable and satellite dish, sound systems, gaming consoles, DVD players, computers, printers, televisions, lamps and coffee pots. Instruct the family to keep things unplugged until they’re ready to use them. You can track your energy savings by looking at your electric bill the month before unplugging and then the months after unplugging the items.

Biggest Energy Wasters

While an electrician might warn you to unplug all of the appliances you’re using, there are some that waste more energy than others. For instance, computer printers in most homes aren’t used on a daily basis but they suck a lot of energy. Some use up to 11.5 watts when they are not in use. Televisions use a comparable amount of power in standby. Cable boxes can use double the amount of computer printers; up to 23 watts when not in use, but still plugged in. One of the biggest drains on your energy savings is the TiVo or similar devices, which can use up to 50 watts when the machine is off but plugged in. By understanding the biggest energy wasters, you can really save energy by unplugging them.

Energy Savings Timers

Timers of all sorts are available to help you save energy and money in your home. Outdoor appliances and lights can be set with specific timers that withstand extreme temperatures and turn off items when they’re not in use. This includes floodlights, the hot tub, outdoor decorations and more. Indoor timers can be used on big appliances like the stove, washing machine, and dryer. Smaller indoor timers can be used for lamps, lights and exhaust fans. These timers can be set for specific times so that the coffee pot can kick on in the morning or heat can turn on a few minutes before you get home from work. However, they keep appliances from sucking energy when they’re not in use or when you’re not home.

The Best Electrician Schools

There are many electrician schools offering both online and offline programs that can jumpstart your career. Becoming an excellent electrician depends on what skills you have and the training you have gone through to enhance your abilities. With so many apprenticeship programs being offered, it’s hard to decide what school is best for you. Later in this article, I will mention some electrician training schools that can help narrow down your choices.

What To Expect As An Electrician Student

Before you begin your application, you need to have a high school diploma or a general equivalency diploma. Then, you can start looking for a school that offers courses that you’d like to learn.

As an electrician student, you will learn about a variety of topics from the most basic subjects to the more specific ones. Number one is the National Electrical Code, a training subject that allows you to learn the electrical work codes and standards used in electrical work. This would also cover topics regarding installations of conductors and other electrical devices, conduit binding, and in advanced classes, switchgear and grounding systems. Another important topic is Programmable Logic Controls, where you will learn about electrical controls and industrial symbols used in control devices, circuits, and electrical diagrams.

You will also learn about occupational health and safety topics that can come in handy when workplace hazards occur. Students are trained for preparation and first aid for an emergency to prevent electrical hazards from occurring.

Electrician Schools In NY

If you’re from the Big Apple, here are some electrician schools that you can attend:

The electrician program at Hudson Valley Community College is a 2-year program wherein you can experience hands-on training within industrial, commercial, and residential environments. The students get to enjoy superb facilities and opportunities in earning an associate’s degree encompassing all electricity-related courses.

Next is SUNY Empire State College, which offers an electrician associate program that is part of the apprenticeship curriculum of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Topics include computer and writing, labor history, and occupational safety.

The Electrician Certificate Program Bramson ORT College allows you to take topics such as basic electronics, computer information systems, and basic electricity. You will receive an electronics technology certificate upon completion.

Electrician Schools In New Jersey

Electrician schools in NJ are Everest Institute (in South Plainfield), Fortis Institute (in Lawrenceville, and Wayne), and Pennco Tech (in Blackwood).

The Everest Institute Electrician Program includes training not only in technical subjects but also in topics such as communication and science. This program prepares you for a career in the industrial, residential, and commercial fields.

Fortis Institute in New Jersey (both Lawrenceville and Wayne) offers an Electrical Systems Technician program set to build up your skills and knowledge on troubleshooting, repair, cable preparation, and testing.

The electrician program of Pennco Tech provides instructions on the basic and practical applications of power and wiring, plus topics on motors and transformer installations. The Pennco Tech electrician graduates will have the opportunity to work in entry-level technical positions in commercial and industrial positions.

Schools For Electricians Online

In addition to electrician trade schools and community colleges, you can also take your classes online and get your certification. There are plenty of accredited online electrician schools such as Penn Foster Career School and Ashworth College where you can learn just as much as from offline classes.

The electrician program at Penn Foster teaches you the basics of electricity, plus installation and heating and lighting practices, among others. Included in their learning materials is a guide for the journeyman examination.

The program at Ashworth College consists of subjects such as power systems, installation and wiring, repair, and safety. The students can take exams online and complete the program in as early as 6 months.

What an Electrician Does

An Electrician is someone who is a specialist in electrical systems. This includes installation and proper functioning of such systems and devices. They also specialize in troubleshooting problems arising out of faulty wiring or malfunctioning equipment. This particular trade allows one to attain specialization in various branches like electrical wiring and systems for corporate spaces, or custom wiring for special aesthetic purposes. The work of an individual electrician is confined to private and residential spaces, while work on public utilities is generally tendered out to electrical contractors. These electrical contractors employ many such electricians under them. Individuals, however, in this trade usually prefer to be freelance workers.


Education for this field requires one to have a good background in mathematics, science, and engineering drawing. There are various options for electrician courses which include:

The apprenticeship program: It is also referred to as an on the job electrician certification program, where 144 hours of classroom instruction is complemented by 2000 hours of OJT. The classroom courses cover electrical theory while OJT takes care of practical training.
Military training: Although not very popular, these army programs offer good preparation to future electricians.


The basic qualification for electrician courses is a high school diploma. Various courses are offered by organizations for electrician certification like National Electrical Contractors Association. Before applying for any programs or electrician schools one must ensure that the organization is state approved. After completing the required coursework and the stipulated number of OJT hours one needs to apply for a license as well. The licensing procedures may vary according to state, for example in California electrician training. However, most state exams test an applicant’s knowledge of the National Electrical Code. Working on certain projects like highways may require special licensing requirements. It is important to check the licensing requirements of different states.


An increase in population would create a need for new residential complexes and many other public works, and thus, there would be a need for more such professionals to install wiring systems and electronic devices. Also, most of the industries are moving towards automation. Installation of such automated devices is likely to stimulate a demand for such professionals in the future, and thus create more electrician jobs. It is, however, important to realize that employment opportunities in this sector are sensitive to changes in the economy.