How to find Environmentally Friendly Computers


I tried to post this yesterday, but ran into some minor computer problems.  So here goes today.

So, you’re looking for a new computer but want one that’s more environmentally friendly.  How do you go about finding one?  Well, there are a lot of places to look (like Consumer Reports), but the three that I checked into are EPEAT, EnergyStar, and 80Plus.

Their criteria can be found here (for EPEAT), here (for EnergyStar) and here (for 80Plus).  One thing to note about EPEAT is that they include the EnergyStar rating in their criteria.

EPEAT doesn’t have any integrated systems (computer and monitor combo package) in their “Gold” rating.  However they do have 22 of them in their “Silver” rating.  Plus, you can probably get a Gold rated computer and monitor separately for a similar price as an integrated system.  Not counting that you can get the computer and monitor that YOU want, not the bundle that they think you want.

80Plus is mainly for Power Supplies.  With a little research, you can find the Power Supply that is inside of the computer you’re looking for (or build your own computer). 

The important thing is, research now, and then buy the best computer that you can afford, which meets your wishes.  You should also look into Universal Power Supplies (UPS systems) and other methods to reduce your energy demands.

Finally, I want to point out another useful tool.  Kill-A-Watt.  This is a digital meter that you plug into your outlet, then plug the appliance(s) that you want to find out about into it. It gives you the Kw/h, Amps, Volts, Watts, and other information about the energy being used by the appliance(s).  I purchased this, and used it to size up my UPS system for my main computer—along with finding out how much electricity I’m actually wasting.

Tomorrow, I’ll discuss some Green Programs, and how they’ll help you to save the environment (and money as well).

Have a great day:)
Patrick.

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