How much energy are your home appliances using?
With the ever increasing amount of appliances in the home, the amount of electricity they use plays a big part in your fuel bills. You could save energy (and reduce your bills) by starting to think about the appliances you use the most.
Some appliances will use more electricity than others – one rule to go by is that appliances which produce heat use more than those that produce light and sound. So there’s not much point worrying about how much your alarm clock uses, instead think about trying to cut down on using your kettle or electric shower, as these use a lot more energy.
All appliances have a power rating telling you how much electricity it uses when turned on. This is given in Watts (W) or kilowatts (kW). However, the amount of electricity an appliance actually uses depends on how long it is turned on for. This is measured in Kilowatt-hours (kWh).
To put this into perspective a fridge usually has a low power rating of about 40-120W, but because it’s on all the time it uses a lot of electricity over the year. On the other hand An electric hoover has a 1-2kW power rating so uses a lot of electricity, but is only on for short periods of time and so wouldn’t use as much electricity over the same period.
You can easily work out yourself how much electricity your appliances are actually using with this simple formula:
Power Rating (kW) x Time (hours) = Energy Used kWh)
So if your washing machine has a power rating of 1.2kW and is on for 1.5 hours, the energy used would be 1.2kW x 1.5 = 1.8 kWh.
To work out how much this costs you simply multiply the energy used (kWh) by the tariff electricity rate on your bill – usually around 14pence/kWh.
So take the washing machine again: 1.8kWh X 14p = 25.2 pence – this is how much it costs to run your washing machine for 1.5 hours.
Don’t fancy doing all of this maths? There are simple online calculators that can work this out for you, just enter the power rating of the device and the amount of time you use it and it will calculate the running cost.
What to look out for when replacing appliances
When looking for energy efficient appliances for your home, you need to look at the energy ratings label and consider the kW rating. The label has a rating band from A to D, this is a scale of how energy efficient the appliance is. A-Rated appliances are the most efficient.
However, energy usage is also dependent on the size of the product. This means that two differently sized appliances with the same energy rating would actually have different levels of energy usage. For example the Energy Saving Trust say that an A rated 180-litre fridge freezer could cost only £39 a year to run, whereas a larger 525-litre fridge freezer with a better A+ rating could cost £51 a year to run.
Greener Kirkcaldy can help!
Our energy advisors can give you advice to help you reduce your energy use and make your house more efficient – saving you money and keeping you and your family warm.
Our Cosy Kingdom service offers free and impartial home energy advice. One of our energy advisors can come to your home and give you one to one help and advice.
For more information or to arrange a free home visit get in touch by calling 01592 858458, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or pop into our High Street Hub, 254a High Street, for a chat Wednesday to Saturday, 10am-4pm.