Energy & Cost Impacts: Smart Plugs

Energy savings are achieved primarily by enabling users to use programmable schedules to turn off power supply to appliances and office electronics that continue to use electricity even when not providing regular services. Some examples include vending machines, water coolers, drinking fountains, coffee machines, etc., in workplace communal areas and portable space heaters and fans in personal workspaces.

Specific savings for a smart plug unit are dependent on the exact appliance plugged into it, with the two major determining factors being the power consumption of the appliance when not providing services and the schedule programmed into the smart plug. Higher energy savings will result from appliances with high standby energy consumption. Similarly, the longer the smart plug is scheduled to cut off the power supply to the appliance, the higher the energy savings.

Smart plugs also exhibit a small amount of internal power consumption that is necessary to support the intended functionalities, including connectivity and energy metering. This internal power consumption will slightly offset the savings realized by the smart plug. In the Hub, the internal power consumption is listed for each evaluated product model.