When you think of the electricity you use in your house, your first thought is probably the lights, right? But lighting accounts for only around 10-15% of your electricity bill – the rest is spent on power-hungry gadgets, gizmos and appliances. Here are the biggest offenders, plus a few tips on keeping their costs down!
Plasma TVs were excessive energy guzzlers and are on their way out! If you’re in the market for a new TV, consider an LED model instead, which will use around a third less energy than an old plasma version. But if you already own a plasma TV, follow these helpful hints to keep its running costs down:
Doing just two loads of washing and drying a week can cost around £100 per year (£30 washing and £70 drying). Turn up the heat, or add extra loads, and that cost goes up, up, up! Check out our guide to using appliances more efficiently, and follow these top tips to lower your laundry costs:
If you are able to dry your clothes on a clothes rack, in a well-ventilated room you can skip the using a tumble dryer at all, saving £70 per year! Just try to keep the humidity in that room by closing a door (keep them off the radiators though as they block the heat)
Also, if you have a timer, try to use your washing machine during the night, or in the middle of the day to reduce the load on supply!
A combined fridge-freezer uses anywhere between 250 and 427 kWh per year, which costs between £40 and £65. It’s even more expensive if you own separate appliances, with stand alone fridges using an average 170 kWh per year (about £25) and chest freezers using between 170 and 360 kWh (£4). Consider replacing older models with newer, more energy efficient versions (more on energy efficiency here), but in the meantime:
The way you cook your dinner has a huge impact on electricity bills. Cooking on an electric cooker (3.3kWh), for thirty minutes a day will cost a whopping £90 per year. An electric oven (3kWh) for thirty minutes a day £82. Alternatively, take the fast or slow road a microwave (1.4kWh), for speedy results, will cost about £3 per year, if used for 10 minutes a day. For those who don’t like the microwave, try a slow cooker which uses on average 0.03kWh, which costs about £14 per year, if used for eight hours every day.
Everyone loves a cuppa, but electric kettles are one of the biggest energy offenders, simply because they get used so often – in an average household 1,500 times a year! Boiling a 3kWh kettle, for 10 minutes day will cost over £27 per year, if you half fill the kettle, it will take half the time and only cost £13.50 a year! Try boiling just for one cup when you can.
Compared to their portable laptop counterparts, old desktop computers are pretty energy hungry (0.12kWh compared to 0.04kWh!) costing an average of around £13 a year to run (£4 for laptops). New all-in-one models use about 0.12kWh, or £13 per year. All based on two hours use per day. Throw printers (0.5kWh) and modems (0.009kWh) into the mix and you’re using even more.
Savings calculations are based on electricity costing 15p per kWh. Every electrical appliance has a power rating which tells you how much electricity it needs to work. This is usually given in watts (W) or kilowatts (kW). Of course, the amount of electricity it uses depends on how long it’s on for, and this is measured in kilowatt-hours (kWh).
All the facts in this article were sourced by our partner, the Centre for Sustainable Energy. If you’d like more free impartial advice on anything from tips on energy efficiency and renewable energy to how to apply for grants and financial support just give us a call on 0800 408 6601 (mobile 0117 934 1999) to speak with an energy efficiency expert or you can email us.
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OVO Energy Ltd, registered office 1 Rivergate Temple Quay Bristol, BS1 6ED, company no. 06890795 registered in England and Wales, VAT No. 100119879
Additional terms and conditions
Please see below for full terms and conditions on 33% renewable electricity, 3% interest rewards, exit fees and saving claims.
1Monthly cost - Representative monthly direct debit costs based on a non-economy-7, dual-fuel, medium user (3100 kWhs elec. and 12500 kWhs gas) paying in advance by direct debit, including online discount. All rates correct as of 23/08/16, but may go up or down.
2Weekly cost - Representative weekly costs based on a non-economy-7, dual-fuel, medium user (3100 kWhs elec. and 12500 kWhs gas). All rates correct as of 23/08/16, but may go up or down.
3Pay Monthly Savings are based on the average estimated annual costs for new PAYM OVO customers quoted through the OVO website (based on household and/or consumption information provided by those customers), compared to their current supplier and tariff. Comparisons taken between 01/01/2016 and 11/10/16. Incl VAT. Actual savings may vary according to your current supplier or tariff, individual tariff options, household information, consumption and location.
4Pay As You Go Savings are based on the average estimated annual costs for new PAYG OVO customers quoted through the OVO website (based on household and/or consumption information provided by those customers), compared to their current supplier and tariff. Comparisons taken between 01/01/2016 and 11/10/16. Incl VAT. Actual savings may vary according to your current supplier or tariff, individual tariff options, household information, consumption and location.
We include almost twice as much renewable electricity as the national average: At least 33% of electricity in all of our tariffs comes from renewable sources. The national average, according to Ofgem as at March 2014 was 16.7%. For more information please visit this page.
33% of your electricity comes from renewable sources: 33% renewable electricity as standard as of 1st April 2015. Renewable electricity is generated from wind, solar, geothermal, wave, tidal, hydro, biomass, landfill gas, sewage treatment plant gas and biogas.
3% interest: Calculated at 3% per year, paid monthly based on number of days in credit and the amount left in your account after you’ve paid your bill. OVO Interest Reward is capped at 12 times the amount of the current direct debit amount and is available to customers paying by advance direct debit. Terms apply: http://www.ovoenergy.com/terms/
95% of new customers save when switching to OVO: Based on all new customer signups between 01/02/2016 and 31/07/2016
94% of surveyed customers would recommend us: OVO conducted a survey of their customers in between 1st January 2016 and 15th April 2016. Out of 15,312 customers who responded, over 94% rated OVO 6+ when asked 'how likely would you be to recommend us to a friend and family, on a scale of 1 to 10.
Britain's top rated energy provider: Britain's top rated energy provider in the Which? 2015 satisfaction survey. Survey conducted in October 2015. Awarded in January 2016.