Plugging into savingsThe Energy Center of Wisconsin, with the funding support of the Minnesota Office of Energy Security and Minnesota Power Company, directed a timely consumer electronics field study on behaviors and usage patterns of homes across the State of MN. View our news release.
Various household electrical devices, their energy use and related consumer behaviors were explored throughout this year-long study with the ultimate goal of identifying both behavioral and technical savings opportunities. The study encompassed phone, mail and in-home contact as information gathering methods and has wielded some intriguing data.
In the news
12.13.10 | Psst. Confess. Are YOU Guilty?
The average home in 1980 had only three electronic devices. That was 30 years ago. Since then, the electronics industry has grown into a major powerhouse industry. Do you have any idea how many small devices you have plugged into sockets around the house? Check out this blog from Electronic Component News.
09.07.10 | Unplug for Savings
The September/October 2010 issue of Home Energy Magazine features an article on the Energy Center's plug load study by Ingo Bensch and Scott Pigg.
06.29.10 | Plug Load Study on Wisconsin Public Radio
Larry Meiller talks with Ingo Bensch and Scott Pigg about reducing the energy load of consumer electronics (38 mins).
06.23.10 | Energy Savings at Home
A news video from Madison's NBC-15 featured Ingo Bensch and Scott Pigg.
06.14.10 | Homes Waste Watts of Power, Study Finds
Tom Content of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel highlights findings from the Energy Center's plug load study.
Final report and datasets
Datasets: Three datasets from this research are available for public use. Energy researchers are most likely to find these data of value. See the methodology description and appendices of the final report for further context and survey instruments.
- Telephone survey results (.sav file): household demographic and attitudinal data; and limited equipment data (contact Ingo Bensch)
- Appliance saturation survey results (.sav file): comprehensive household appliance saturation data with an emphasis on computer and entertainment devices (contact Ingo Bensch or Scott Pigg)
- Metering data (.xls file): observed equipment inventory and summary-level meter data by device (contact Scott Pigg)
Videos / presentations / papers
- Scouting for Residential Electricity Savings - watch now | details
Originally broadcast January 27, 2010, this 83-minute webcast features Scott Pigg and Ingo Bensch of the Energy Center of Wisconsin. You may also download the slides .
- Plug load interview (28.5 minutes) - watch now
- Plug load overview (4.5 minutes) - watch now
- Energy Savings Opportunities with Home Electronics and Other Plug-Load Devices: Results from a Minnesota Field Study: ACEEE 2010 Summer Study paper by Scott Pigg, Ingo Bensch, Rana Belshe, and Karen Koski.
- Habits, Adjustments, or Acquisitions: What Behaviors Will Minnesotans Change to Stay Above Average?
On November 17, 2009, Scott Pigg, Ingo Bensch, and Rana Belshe presented preliminary findings from the study at the Behavior, Energy and Climate Change Conference in Washington D.C.