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Office Equipment

Equipment Requirements

It's common in every office to leave computers and copiers on for extended periods of time without using them. The equipment sitting idle consumes energy continuously, ultimately wasting a large portion of the energy. That wasted energy is a major contributor to air pollution.


When purchasing computer equipment, copiers, fax machines, monitors, printers, scanners and other multifunction office equipment, look for systems that feature the ENERGY STARŪ logo. These cost no more than their less efficient counterparts. They power down, or "go to sleep," when not in use to automatically reduce electrical usage by over 50%. Approximately 70% of the computer industry is participating in the ENERGY STARŪ Labeled Office Equipment program. Product scanners have improved in recent years. Soft power-down (9 watts in stand-by) and automatic power-up scanners (22 watts while scanning) are now available.

These features save energy and extend the life of the unit without affecting operations. The new scanners are easier and more comfortable to use because they simultaneously scan four sides of a product as it slides across the scanner, thus minimizing wrist movement.

If copy machines or computers are not being used for extended periods of time, such as during lunch breaks or meetings, then some or all of the equipment can be turned off. You can turn off your computer’s display monitor and printer while leaving the main computer CPU on without any adverse effects on the equipment. This typically saves up to 60% of the operating costs of the whole computer system. An equipment start-up/shut-down schedule is often the best way to accomplish this measure.

Equipment Requirements
Computer equipment labeled with the ENERGY STARŪ logo must meet the following requirements:

  • Computers - automatically power down to 30 watts or less when not in use
  • Monitors - automatically power down to 30 watts for less when not in use
  • Printers - automatically power down to 15 to 45 watts
  • Scanners - automatically enter a sleep mode after 15 minutes of idle time

Copiers labeled with the ENERGY STARŪ logo are equipped with an automatic shut-off feature that activates after long periods of inactivity. This feature can reduce annual electricity costs for copiers by 60%.

Fax machines labeled with the ENERGY STARŪ logo are equipped with a power-management feature that can reduce energy costs by 50%. Similar to the power down function, these fax machines reach a low-power state after a long period of inactivity.

Multifunction devices have features that allow them to carry out more than one task. For example, the device may primarily copy, however the equipment may perform fax as well as printing capabilities. ENERGY STARŪ labeled multifunction devices have four modes: sleep mode, default time, low-power mode, and recovery time.


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