Cable boxes are some of the biggest electricity drains in people’s homes. The Los Angeles Times reports that the devices leased to customers by cable and Internet providers consume about 35 watts on average. That said, many models have the potential to use even more energy. Cheryl Williamsen, a California resident, told the news source that she found out her cable boxes need about 500 watts, making them very similar to her washing machine in total consumption.
“I could yank the power supply cord, but that’s not a very consumer-friendly way to reduce energy consumption,” Williamsen said.
Indeed, that strategy is incredibly inconvenient. For one, it shouldn’t be up to the end user to find ways to reduce electricity usage. Second, if your cable box has a recording function, it won’t be able to save any programs when it’s unplugged.
The good news is that the cable industry is aware of the problem and wants to do something about it. According to the news source, providers “agreed recently to voluntarily reduce the power consumption of new devices, which it said would save consumers $1 billion annually.” While a full solution may take awhile to come to fruition, more efficient cable boxes will be in homes some time in the future.