Torbjorn Zetterlund

Mon 03 2022

What uses the most electricity in your home?

by bernt & torsten

This year when the electricity prices skyrocket in my village, I wanted to find out how much electricity my appliances consumed, and while I was at it I also calculated the carbon impact of my electrical appliances.

While calculating the Kwh usage of my appliances, I had to consider a few things:

  • the capacity of my electrical appliance, expressed in watt
  • the number of hours that my appliance is in use on a daily basis
  • the number of days per year when the appliance is in use

For the calculation I used the following formula:

[number of  hours’ use] x [number of days’ use] x ([capacity of appliance expressed in watt] / 1,000) = number of kWh

You can validate that this is the correct way to calculate by visiting here

You need the capacity to be divided by 1,000 to convert the number of watts into the number of kilowatts and give me the number of kWh (kilowatt-hours).

I created this template for doing my calculations and I shared it with my family so they have the same awareness, that I have so they can make their own decisions on electricity usage.

Breakdown electricty appliances

Appliances affects our energy bills

Have you ever thought about how much electricity each of these appliances actually uses? 

For our daily life, our homes are full of appliances and devices, from TVs and games consoles to tumble dryers and kettles, and so many more.

My house is in a small village in Sweden, the appliances and gadgets that I use are what are available to me in Europe. It may differ a little from where you live, this is just my recommendation based on what I have learnt.

I used two services Electrictymap and Our World in Data to get the details of how much kg co2/kWh electricity emits, to get the Co2 emission by appliances. This of course differs around the world.

Your House

If you use electricity to heat your home, then this will be the biggest cost for you, to reduce your electricity bill, having a smart meter installed is the quickest and easiest way to keep track of your energy use.

Insulating your home is one of the best steps you can take to reduce heat loss, save energy, and cut costs.

How much electricity does a TV use? 

The smaller your TV screen, the less the TV will cost you per year. The newer flatscreen TV is much more economical than the old-style TV’s.

How much power does your fridge-freezer use?

White goods appliances need to be kept switched on 24/7, so it’s definitely worth buying the most energy-efficient model.  You could actually save a sustainable amount, just by switching to a more efficient model. 

It’s almost always cheaper to run a fridge-freezer than 2 separate appliances. Here are some more handy tips on keeping your fridge-freezer as efficient as possible:

  • Don’t put your fridge next to heat sources, like your oven or in direct sunlight.
  • Your fridge should be kept between 3 to 5C and your freezer at -18C. Any lower can use up to 25% more energy. 
  • Don’t cram your fridge-freezer. Leave space for air to circulate.
  • Check the door seals are airtight, and don’t leave the fridge door open.
  • Vacuuming the coils at the back of your fridge every now and again could improve efficiency by up to 30%.

How much electricty does a dishwashers use?

A dishwasher heats up the water, there are factors to safe on electricity using a dishwasher, choose an A-rated dishwasher. Here are a few tips to keep the costs down:

  • Give the plates a quick scrape, but there’s no need for the pre-wash cycle.
  • Fill your dishwasher. A half-empty load wastes energy and water. 
  • Load properly. Glasses up top, large items at back and sides, and all face towards the middle. And don’t overload!
  • Use the eco setting! It uses around 20% less energy, and still gets your plates clean.

How much electricity does a washing machine use?

A washing machine is not cheap to run! It’s because the electricity needed to heat the water pushes up your bills. 

It makes sense to choose an A-rated washing machine to save on your electricity bill. How you can keep your costs down:

  • Use the eco setting if your machine has one.
  • Always wash at the lowest temperature you can.
  • Wait until you have a full load to wash, as only washing half a load still uses the same amount of energy and water.

Fans are more energy-efficient than you might think

Fans are generally quite energy-efficient, and much cheaper to run than air-conditioners. But finding out how much electricity they use is down to the wattage. 

Your computer’s electricity use

A desktop computer uses around 0.1kWh per hour. a laptop, however, runs at 0.05kWh. You should choose a laptop over a desktop computer if you want to save some money..

How to reduce your lighting electricity bill

Lighting accounts for 15% of your electricity bill. But it’s an easy and not-too-expensive fix. Switching from incandescent to LED bulbs makes a huge difference. In fact, we could cut our lighting electricity bill by over 50% just by switching to LEDs. 

Does unplugging appliances save electricity?

Yes, it does, if your appliance has a “standby mode” when you’re not using them – such as TVs and games consoles then they are using electricity even in “standby mode”. Newer appliances are more efficient in “standby mode” so the savings are low, if you have old appliances then you should switch them off.