Reduce TV running costs at home

Last updated: 18 February 2021

The average home has two or more televisions. TVs, home entertainment systems, computers and other electronic 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.

Energy efficiency and TVs

A number of factors affect how much energy your television uses.

  • 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: Save energy by turning TVs off when no one is watching them.
  • 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.

Choose an energy efficient TV

Energy rating label

Compare star ratings

Energy rating

The energy rating label helps you compare the energy efficiency and running costs of different TVs. The star rating is shown in the red band at the top of the label and can range from 1 to 6 stars. The more stars, the more energy efficient the TV will be, and the lower the running costs. Large wide-screen televisions with low star ratings can use as much energy as a medium sized fridge.

Energy consumption

Compare the energy efficiency of different TVs (and with different screen sizes) using the star rating system, then use the numbers in the energy consumption box to find out the model's annual energy consumption. When purchasing a new TV, use the Energy Rating Calculator to choose a model with as high a star rating as possible.

Minimum stars

Next time you buy a TV, try to buy a model with at least a 5-star rating.

Additional tips

  • Choose the right size: Choose the smallest possible television that still meets your needs. Larger screens consume more electricity than smaller screens.
  • Choose an efficient type of TV: LEDs and LCDs are normally more efficient than plasmas. Always refer to the Energy Rating Label to compare.
  • Choose a model with energy saving modes: A TV with energy saving modes will reduce your energy consumption even further.

Energy saving power-boards

Standby power can comprise as much as 10% of your electricity bill. This is because many people use the standby mode on their devices, which means they are still using energy even when they're not actively operating.

Regardless of the 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 you're not using them.

Running costs for TVs

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

24 inch (61cm)

Hours/day Energy star rating Annual running costs Annual emissions (kg/year)
2 hours 3 stars $10 37
2 hours 5 stars $7 25
2 hours 6 stars $6 21
4 hours 3 stars $18 67
4 hours 5 stars $12 45
4 hours 6 stars $10 37
8 hours 3 stars $35 130
8 hours 5 stars $23 84
8 hours 6 stars $18 67

32 inch (82cm)

Hours/day Energy star rating Annual running costs Annual emissions (kg/year)
2 hours 3 stars $15 54
2 hours 5 stars $10 37
2 hours 6 stars $7 25
4 hours 3 stars $28 104
4 hours 5 stars $18 67
4 hours 6 stars $12 45
8 hours 3 stars $55 203
8 hours 5 stars $35 130
8 hours 6 stars $23 84

42 inch (107cm)

Hours/day Energy star rating Annual running costs Annual emissions (kg/year)
2 hours 3 stars $22 83
2 hours 5 stars $15 54
2 hours 6 stars $10 37
4 hours 3 stars $43 160
4 hours 5 stars $28 104
4 hours 6 stars $18 67
8 hours 3 stars $85 316
8 hours 5 stars $55 203
8 hours 6 stars $35 131

49 inch (124cm)

Hours/day Energy star rating Annual running costs Annual emissions (kg/year)
2 hours 3 stars $29 107
2 hours 5 stars $19 70
2 hours 6 stars $12 46
4 hours 3 stars $56 209
4 hours 5 stars $36 135
4 hours 6 stars $24 87
8 hours 3 stars $111 412
8 hours 5 stars $71 264
8 hours 6 stars $46 169

55 inch (140cm)

Hours/day Energy star rating Annual running costs Annual emissions (kg/year)
2 hours 2 stars $44 164
2 hours 5 stars $29 106
2 hours 7 stars $15 57
4 hours 2 stars $87 323
4 hours 5 stars $56 208
4 hours 7 stars $29 109
8 hours 2 stars $174 642
8 hours 5 stars $111 411
8 hours 7 stars $57 211

60 inch (152cm)

Hours/day Energy star rating Annual running costs Annual emissions (kg/year)
2 hours 3 stars $41 153
2 hours 5 stars $27 99
2 hours 7 stars $18 65
4 hours 3 stars $82 302
4 hours 5 stars $53 195
4 hours 7 stars $34 125
8 hours 3 stars $162 598
8 hours 5 stars $104 384
8 hours 7 stars $66 245

Using your TV efficiently

Regardless of the type of TV and entertainment system you own, you can reduce your energy bills by running your appliances efficiently.

  1. Turn off your TV: Turn your TV off when no one is watching it.
  2. Learn about power saving features: Turn the brightness down and check if your TV has a power-saving mode.
  3. Position your TV so 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.
  4. Use the radio instead: If you like to have the TV turned on for background noise, try using the radio instead. Radios use far less electricity than televisions.
  5. Turn your TV off at the wall: Or use an energy saving power-board to make sure the TV doesn't use electricity when it's turned off.

Disposing of your TV responsibly

Ensure that when you buy a new product to replace an old one, you take the necessary steps to dispose of your old product responsibly. Recycling televisions will reduce landfill, conserve resources and reduce the amount of greenhouse gases created in the production of new materials.

Find out more about recycling televisions