Energy efficient TVs and home entertainment systems

Televisions, home entertainment systems and computers and IT equipment can account for 10% of the average Victorian household’s energy bill. 

This includes items such as:

  • TVs
  • VCR and DVD players and recorders
  • HD and AV recorders and receivers
  • set top boxes
  • games consoles
  • home theatre systems and stereos
  • computers and monitors
  • printers and scanners
  • modems
  • fax machines
  • answering machines
  • cordless phones.

Energy efficiency and TVs

TVs can be one of the costliest items in this list, especially because many households own more than one.

A number of factors affect how much energy your television runs up, including but not limited to:

  • The type of TV you own. LED and LCD TVs are generally more energy efficient than plasmas.
  • The size of your screen. Larger screens consume more electricity than smaller screens.
  • The brightness of your screen. The brighter the screen, the more energy the TV uses.
  • Your usage patterns. TVs should always be turned off when no one is watching them, in order to save energy.
  • The energy consumed by your TV while in standby. Different types of TVs consume different amounts of energy while in standby mode.
  • The number of TVs you own and use. The more TVs you have running in your household, the more energy you will use.

Choosing an energy efficient TV

If you are looking for a TV that uses less energy, look for:

  • The smallest possible television for your needs.
  • A model with at least 5 stars.
  • An efficient type of TV – LEDs and LCDs are normally more efficient than plasmas.
  • An energy saving mode which can reduce energy consumption even further.

Energy saving power boards

No matter what type of TV you have, an energy saving power board can reduce the amount of energy wasted when appliances (such as TVs) are left on when people are no longer using them.

Energy saving power boards or standby power controllers (SPCs) are a very wise investment.

Television energy rating labels

energy rating label with additional stars for television

energy rating label for televisionEnergy rating labels can help you to decide which television to buy, by offering a comparison of the running costs and energy expenditure of different models. These labels show a rating of 1 to 6 stars in a red band at the top of the label. The more stars, the more efficient the television is and the lower its running costs will be. To compare televisions with the same screen size, look at the numbers in the middle of the box to find out how much energy the television uses over the course of a year.

You can also visit the Energy Rating website to search for and compare the energy efficiency of different televisions.

Running Costs

The table below shows the annual running cost for different types of TVs based on screen size and star rating.

  2 HOURS PER DAY 4 HOURS PER DAY 8 HOURS PER DAY

Screen
size

Star rating

Annual
Running
Cost*

Annual GHG
Emissions
(kgCO2-e)**

Annual
Running
Cost*

Annual GHG
Emissions
(kgCO2-e)**
Annual
Running
Cost*
Annual GHG
Emissions
(kgCO2-e)**

26 inch
(66 cm)

$11

 55

$22

 105  $42

204

4 stars

$8

 37

$14

 68 $27 

131

6 stars

$5

 25

$9

 45 $17 

84

32 inch
(82 cm)

$15

 74

$30

 142 $58 

279

4 stars

$10

 49

$19

 92 $37 

179

6 stars

$7

 33

$13

 60 $24 

115

42 inch
(107 cm)

$24

 114

$46

 221 $91 

437

4 stars

$15

 74

$30

 143 $58 

280

6 stars

$10

 49

$19

 93 $37 

180

47 inch
(119 cm)

$29

 140

$57

 275  $113

544

4 stars

$19

 92

$37

 177 $72 

349

6 stars

$13

 60

$24

 115 $46 

223

55 inch
(140 cm)

$37

 184

$75

 363 $149 

720

4 stars

$25

 120

$48

 233 $96 

461

 6 stars  $16 78   $31 151   $61  296
60 inch
(152 cms) 
   $44 214   $88 422   $174  838
 4 stars  $29 139   $56 271   $112  537
 6 stars  $19 90   $36 175   $71  344

* Calculations assume  electricity tariff of 27.5c/kWh

**GHG=Greenhouse Gas Coefficient used is 1.324 kilograms of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions per kilowatt hour

Use your TV more efficiently

Consider the following tips to help you use your television more efficiently.

  • Turn the TV off when no one is watching it.
  • Learn about the capabilities and functions of your TV. Turn the brightness down and check if it has a power saving mode.
  • Position your TV so that it isn’t in direct sunlight – this way, you won’t need to have the brightness turned all the way up. You can also deliberately turn the brightness down and watch TV in a darkened room for better picture clarity.
  • If you like to have the TV turned on for background noise, try using the radio instead. Radios use far less electricity than televisions.
  • Turn your TV off at the wall, or use an energy saving power board to make sure that the TV doesn’t consume electricity when it’s turned off.

If you’re looking to purchase a new television, you might also be interested in information on disposing of your old TV.

Make a Smarter Choice

Smarter Choice logo

The Smarter Choice retail program provides helpful and actionable advice on energy efficient TVs and home entertainment systems. Find your nearest retailer to take that next step towards being a more energy efficient household.

Download the Smarter Choice fact sheet on televisions below.