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Review: Belkin "Conserve" Energy-Saving Surge Protector

Have you been thinking about how to reduce your use of energy lately? I'm not referring to just trying to cut down to reduce your electricity bills. I'm talking about beyond just shutting off your lights when nobody is in the room and switching to low-energy light bulbs. For example, my husband likes to leave the digital cable box on all the time just because it is convenient. I like to turn it off because for at least 75% of the day, nobody is watching television (and the fact that the twins cannot reach it, thereby requiring them to ask for permission to watch TV doesn't hurt either).

So if you look around your home, do you have that unused VCR plugged in and blinking or still have your surge protector that your PC and printer are plugged into powered on, but your computer is not even turned on? What many people do not consider is that standby energy is used unnecessarily a large percentage of the time. I am not innocent myself. I prefer to put my laptop on "sleep" rather than shutting down, so I do not have to reopen all my windows again when I hop back on. So we are all faced with the dilemma of conserving energy vs. convenience.

Well, Belkin has come up with a way to solve this dilemma. With the award-winning Conserve Enery-Saving Surge Protector, they have minimized the inconvenience of conserving standby energy. This power strip has two outlets that are allowed to stay on 100% of the time. The other six outlets (or eight, depending on which model you purchase) are turned on and off by an easy to use remote. This allows you to have your clock radio plugged in without having the entire surge protector on standby.

I was lucky enough to have a Conserve (BG108000) sent to me to use in my own home. Let me tell you about another problem (not related to conserving energy) that this smart surge protector solved for me . . .

This wall sconce by our staircase is not hardwired. The wire runs behind the wall inside a closet and plugs into an outlet near the floor. The outlet is controlled by a wall switch. The problem arose when we added this aquarium to our living room. The aquarium's filter needs to be running all the time, so we must leave the outlet powered on continuously. As a result, we had to stop using the wall sconce because we would have to dig behind that aquarium to plug and unplug the sconce when we wanted to turn it on and off. Now that we have the Belkin Conserve, this is no longer a problem. The aquarium is plugged into one of the two outlets that is on all the time.

The wall sconce is plugged into one of the other six switchable outlets, which allows us to turn the light on and off with the handy little remote. This remote comes with a holder that can even be mounted onto the wall.

Take a look at how compact and sleek the unit is. This surge protector actually fits into the tiny space between the aquarium and the wall, keeping it completely out of sight.

One feature about the Conserve that I have not had a chance to test out is that a single remote is able to control multiple surge protectors. If you would like to learn more about this product, visit You can also save $15 off from now until April 30th, 2009 when you purchase one Conserve through Just use Code: earthday09.