Daily Archive: January 20, 2014

Great Idea, and Almost Perfect Execution

Came across this one at a good price and 5 outlets. I attach the remote to the wall and use the outlets for various lighting setups throughout the main floor of my house, and also my Wireless router that I use with a mobile broadband card. To get good signal I have to set it up quite high, and would need a ladder to reset it as needed. Now I just click the remote off and on to restart.

Why I gave 4 stars.


More outlets than most with 5.

Slim remote with front loading batteries so I can attach it to the wall and still change them.

Distance seems good, the furthest I have is about 20feet.

Price is right.

They have a manual on/off button on the outlets.


The outlets themselves are quite a bit bigger than the other units I have had. Basically they are ugly, and you will want them hidden from view. No idea why they are so big because it doesn’t appear that the casing is full of electronics. Meaning most of it appears hollow.

Overall, if you want a simple setup like I described, and your outlets will be mostly hidden, you can’t beat these for the price.

I choose this one because it had on and off button right on the units so the remote control is not required. Remote has good range and units do what they are suppose to do…. well sort of.

The knock I have against this is that they too drain power even with in the off position. For instance, I figured I’d use on the microwave for when it’s not in use, which is like 23.5 hours a day. Although the microwave only drained about 0.8 watts when plugged in, I though I’d attempt to save even that by turning it off with one of these units. The problem is that each of these units also drain 0.8 watts per hour when connected. That’s not so bad right? not at all except in the case of the microwave and a few other items, it makes no sense to use these.

However, if you have say an entertainment center or at a minimum a flat panel digital TV, the 0.8 watts is nothing. Many people don’t realize that just having the average LCD/LED/Plasma screen TV plugged in and turned off drains 40-60 watts per hour.. Again, that’s turned off. That like running 3-4 CFL light bulbs 24 hours a day. If you simply connected that TV and any other items nearby (say DVD player, cable/sat receiver, or TIVO) to one of these units and turned it off when not in use, you’d save upwards of 70-90 watts per hour during non use times.

However, since have most of my electronic on a surge strip that has an on/off switch, I simply turn off the switch and it uses no additional power. So now I find myself looking for a place to actually use these that will save me on power.

I realize the power is needed, probably, for the wireless remote communications…. so you give a little for the convenience.

I did find a home for a few of these. I put them in the kids’ room. I already had power strips in them but found another convenience. Because we have the power strips and plugs in hard to reach places, these make it easy to shut the power strips down. Also at night, we can easily turn of the TVs, DVD player, cable box, and etc… from our bedroom, after the kids fall asleep. We can also turn them off as we prepared to walk out the door.

Between using this and a number of power switches with on/off switches, we’ve seen a decrease in our power consumption/bill of between around 16-19% over the months following the installations. I accredit most of the drop to the use of power strips and us diligently turning them off when not in use, but these controllers make it easier to turn of several of those switches.

Good luck and think GREEN!