Should I Switch Off Power At The Wall?

Household appliances can account for around 30% of household energy use

Appliances still use power when they’re in standby mode – and this can add up to 10% of your electricity use.

Some of us are obsessive with switching off empty sockets.

Others with have a myriad of electrical devices on stand-by without giving it a second thought.

But who is right? is one just wasting their time or is the other wasting money?

Does switching off power at the wall socket actually make a difference?

Yes it does. Consumer group Choice found in a comparison study that if you have appliances that are inefficient you could be paying over $100 a year for unnecessary power.

In fact, appliances that aren’t switched off properly can account for about 3 per cent of your energy bill.

Appliances with some of the highest standby costs were

  • Printers
  • Washing Machines
  • Wirelless VOIP Routers
  • Speaker Docks


With the increasing popularity of devices like smart TVs and smart speakers, the number of appliances in Australian homes that are ‘always on’ is rising all the time.

While devices on stand-by do not consumer much energy individually, when you consider the vast number of appliances (phone charges, laptops, cordless vacuums etc.) around the house it all starts to add up.

In simple terms, if you don’t need a certain thing actively turned on at the power point, turn it off at the power point.

How do you tell if something is using standby power?

Generally, most devices will have a light or some other indication they are on standby.

Another method is to check if you can feel heat coming from an appliance that you aren’t using, such as a charger when it’s not attached to an appliance.

So, in short: Yes, it’s a good idea to switch off appliances at the wall when they’re not in use and especially when you go on holiday.

It’s not going to be the silver-bullet to make you rich, but it will save you money – and it’s better for the environment.

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