The average person watches TV and online videos for over 5 hours a day according to the 2022 Ofcom report*. With screen time on the rise and the cost of living going up, how much is your TV costing you? Don’t worry, we’ve done the maths and have some top energy saving tips that won’t have you missing your favourite shows.
How much does a TV cost to run?
The running cost of your TV is determined by the amount of energy it uses, as this influences your energy bill. The energy use of your TV is influenced by several factors: the screen size, the screen type, and your usage.
The larger your TV screen the more energy it takes to power it. According to Which?, a 40-43 inch TV (the most common TV size in the UK) costs on average £22.29 per year. Whereas a 65 inch TV will cost you on average £34.82 per year** – that’s more than £10 extra on your energy bill.
Screen type can have a small impact on the energy use of your TV, with QLEDs saving between £3-7 a year compared to a traditional LED or OLED. You may want to consider this when buying your next TV.
The more TV you watch the more energy you are using. However, TVs don’t only use energy whilst they are turned on. As one of many ‘vampire devices’ in your home, your TV is still using energy and costing you money whilst on standby. Many modern TVs don’t include an off button, so the safest way to ensure you aren’t wasting energy is to switch them off at the plug.
Advice for buying a new TV.
To find out how energy efficient a TV is check the appliance rating sticker. An A rating is the most efficient (A+++ for older TVs) and G is the least efficient. Due to changes in 2021, the appliance ratings of many TVs that were previously rated A-C are now rated E-G.
TVs are rated compared to other TVs of the same size, so it is important to bear in mind that an A rated 65 inch TV may still use more energy than a C rated 40 inch TV.
When buying a new TV consider going for one with a higher appliance rating as it will save you money on your energy bills over the years of its use.
How to reduce TV energy use?
You don’t need to splash out on a brand new television to reduce energy use and save money. We’ve got some great everyday energy tips to help improve your energy efficiency without sacrificing your screen time.
Switch off at the plug.
Your TV is still using energy when it is on standby – costing you money when you aren’t even using it. Turn your TV off at the plug to avoid unnecessary energy use from standby mode.
Turning down the brightness of your TV screen will save energy whilst you watch your favourite shows.
Your TV may even offer an Energy Saving Mode setting, which will automatically manage settings such as brightness to reduce your energy use.
Smart plugs are clever little gadgets that allow you to turn any appliance on or off from an app on your phone using wifi or Bluetooth. They plug into your wall socket and then you plug your TV into the smart plug – similar to a plug adapter.
Combine the convenience of a remote control with the energy efficiency of turning off at the plug.
It is not uncommon for households to have multiple TVs in the home, making it tempting to all watch separately on different screens. Try making time to sit down together and spend less energy on powering multiple TVs.
Sometimes a little quality time as a family is good for the soul – and your energy bill.
Is it cheaper to watch on your smartphone?
With online video content rising in popularity, many of us are used to watching on our tablets and smartphones. So it may be a nice surprise to know that watching on your phone instead of your TV saves energy and money***.
Instead of fighting over the remote and watching your favourite shows on different TVs, try rethinking your habits and saving the TV for family time when you all watch together.
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