How to build an energy efficient entertainment centerConsumer electronics are becoming an even bigger part of our energy bills as new must-have products come onto the market seemingly every year. According to Energy Star, consumer electronics make up about 15 percent of the average home’s monthly energy bill.

We all want to have these cool gadgets that provide our families with hours of fun, but it’s unlikely that anyone wants to foot the bill that come with them. Fortunately, there are ways in which you can build an awesome entertainment center or home theater without breaking the bank each month. Here are some tips to get you started:

Look for an Energy Star TV

Your TV is the centerpiece of your home theater, both for its placement and the fact that it uses the most energy out of every device in your entertainment center.

TVs range in price based on size and the kind of screen it has – LCD, plasma, etc. There are so many Energy Star-certified TVs on the market, that there is bound to be one that fits your family’s entertainment needs while staying within your budget.

Use energy-saving power strips

For both safety and practical reasons, you’ll want to use a power strip to accommodate all of the devices in your entertainment center. Not only will they prevent you from overloading your outlets or resorting to extension cords, but many power strips come with helpful energy-saving features.

Look for a power strip that turns itself off when the devices connected to it are not in use to prevent vampire power from being leeched.

Turn off your devices when you’re not using them

Even with energy-saving power strips, it’s good to get in the habit of turning everything in your entertainment center off, especially if yours doesn’t prevent vampire power use.

Caulk the holes where the cables leave the room or house

If you have cables running through the floor from the basement, or outside from your living room, make sure you seal those holes. Heat loss through leaks is one of the biggest contributors to a high energy bill. Caulk those holes to ensure that your entertainment center isn’t contributing to your heating costs as well as your electricity usage.

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