(KMTR) -- As electric rates go up, a new wave of gadgets is hitting the market claiming they’ll save you big bucks on your electric bill. However, EWEB
is now warning customers to watch out, saying many of those devices are likely too good to be true.
The energy saving gadgets are typically known as “power factor correction devices,” which are designed to be plugged in, turned on, then immediately contribute to electric savings on your energy bill.
The “PowerGard” is one of the devices that’s being marketed in the Eugene-Springfield area.
The device supposedly cuts power by storing electricity surges generated by large appliances. It costs $250, but claims to save around 10% or more on an average electric bill.
There are many other “power factor correction devices” on the market. The website Open4Energy.com has a large list of many of them.
(Click the following link to see Open4Energy.com’s list: http://open4energy.com/directory-of-home-energy-saving-scams.)
While the devices claim to save large amounts of money, according to the U.S. Federal Government’s EnergyStar program and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST,) the devices aren’t all they’re cracked up to be most of the time.
EnergyStar says, “power factor correction devices improve power quality but do not generally improve energy efficiency (meaning they won't reduce your energy bill.)”
(Read EnergyStar’s take on the devices at the following link: http://energystar.supportportal.com/ics/support/kbAnswer.asp?deptID=23018&task=knowledge&questionID=14738.)
According to NIST’s study, when using one of the devices on an air conditioner, the average savings equate to $1.80 per-year.
EWEB is now warning customers about “magic” electric savings devices.
“We want our customers to be able to save energy, but we also want to warn customers that when they see something that's kind of amazing or magical kind of way to do that, we want them to be cautious,” says Lance Robertson, Public Affairs Manager at EWEB.
“You know, if it looks too good to be true, it probably is,” says Robertson.
If you’re considering an electric bill saving device, EWEB is asking customers to contact them first. The service is free. Just call 541-685-7000.
To view EWEB’s website with an explanation about the “magic” energy saving devices, click the following link: http://eweb.org/saveenergy/home/technologies.