The average television is no longer just a way to watch live shows. It’s for Netflix binges and gaming, catching up on old favourites, and even browsing the web.
The average household uses their TV for more than 450 minutes per day, according to data from Uswitch. That makes it the second-most used appliance in the living room behind an internet router. So should we be worrying about how our couch potato habits are adding up on the energy bill?
Average energy cost for a television
The good news is that, even over many hours of watching, televisions cost relatively little to run. The average household spends about £13 for a year of usage.
A smart television uses 0.097 kilowatts per hour (kWh) of power, costing about 3 pence for each hour it’s on.
How can I use less energy on my TV?
If you’re still concerned about your power usage, or just want to make sure you don’t waste a penny, then it’s time for a good look around the TV’s settings menu, says Ben Gallizzi, an energy expert at Uswitch.com.
“Some televisions have power-saving modes, which you can usually access via their settings menu,” he says. “Some TVs can adapt how much light they give off, depending on how bright your room is.
“There may also be settings which can adjust when your TV turns off automatically when you haven’t used the remote for a set period of time. If you regularly leave the TV on when not in the room, you could set it to turn off after three or four hours so it powers down by itself when not needed.”
What about games consoles?
Games consoles use slightly more energy, but most households use them for less time than the TV. The average cost for a year of use is £12.48.
Of course, how much power you use will just depend on how many hours you want to spend gaming. But there are ways to make sure the console isn’t eating up too much power in the hours when you aren’t using it.
“Many modern games consoles are very energy-efficient, but can use varying amounts of power even when they are in standby mode,” says Mr Gallizzi.
“The PlayStation 5, for example, only uses 0.38 watts when it is in low-power mode. However, it can use four watts if it is supplying power to USB ports, such as when charging controllers.
“You may be able to use the settings on your games console to set time limits on how long it charges the controllers for. That way, you can leave them plugged in overnight without worrying that they are actively charging the whole time.”