Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Should I Shut My Computer Off??

I've asked myself this question many times, and tend to believe it is better to shut it off when I'm not using it rather than leave it running endlessly.  My reasoning is mainly because it uses electricity and electricity costs money.  I'm the electricity cop in our house (even though my hubby 'thinks' he is, he is constantly leaving lights on and things running, while telling the kids to shut things off!)  I'm always turning lights off and shutting off the fans that are 'supposed' to help circulate the heat from the wood stove in the basement...Such a waste of money!  Every time I turn something off, I tell myself that the hydro bill will be a bit lower this month.  I like saving money!
So, should I be shutting my laptop down when I'm not using it?
I set out to find out the truth of the matter.

Saving money is a good incentive, but just how much can we save? Well, it will depend on your own PC as to how much you could be saving.  A typical computer uses 300 watts.  If you use your PC for 4 hours a day, and don't shut it down, that would mean your computer is running, wasting electricity for 20 hours each day. Now, let's say electricity is 10 cents per kilowatt-hour.  For the 20 hours your computer is running, but not being used, it costs 60 cents per day. Doesn't sound like a lot, but over the course of a year it adds up to $219!!  
There is the argument that turning your computer on and off, thereby it getting hot and then cooling off, several times a day is hard on it's components. Things like solder joints can supposedly be effected, as can the CPU chip. But...and here's where I was convinced..our tv sets have many of the same components as our computers. Do you leave your tv on 24/7??  I know I don't. 
With 3 laptops in our house, I know we can save money on the hydro bill just by shutting them down between uses.  I've programmed them all to go into sleep mode after being idle for several minutes.  Also, just closing the lid shuts them down.  You can do this yourself in Windows by going into 'Control Panel'-'System and Security'-'Power Options'- then choosing 'Power Saver' and setting your preferences under 'change plan settings'. On the side bar of the 'Power Saver' page is the option to choose what happens to your PC when you close the lid.  
Well, there are my findings!  Hope you find them informative and useful!  


  1. We use the sleep mode on the laptop, my husband works on line and is on it a lot of the day. It rarely is ever turned off!

    We don't use tv... I don't think the thing has been turned on in at least a year.... I should use that space for something else!

    The stereo on the other hand IS on 24/7.
    We are always listening to it, and since we don't use or own a vehicle, often times it looks like nobody is home here and since twice in the past while we were sleeping someone had tried to break in, I like there to be noises coming out of the house whether were home and sleeping or out & about. Plus, it's relaxing to me and the hosts are hilarious!



  2. Thank you for this post! I didn't know that I can mess with the settings to make my computer shut down when I close it. I'm going to have to do that!
    There is usually one of us on the computer, or about to be on the computer.. so we leave ours on during the day. We shut it down at night, though. If we all are leaving the house, we will shut it down, too.

  3. I never shut my computers down. I am bad about just leaving things running. Sometimes I leave things on that really shouldn't be (like my flat iron). This is my first visit your blog! Come stop by mine! I am following!


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