How do you calculate running costs?


Almost all products with an energy label display an annual energy consumption figure.  This is based on an average number of uses, as specified in each product's Energy Labelling Regulation.

This may obviously be higher or lower than your actual use - so running costs listed on Topten UK should only be taken as a guide.  A family of five will certainly run their washing machine more often and incur higher energy costs than a person living alone.

For some products, Topten UK also shows estimated lifetime costs over 8 years, or 15 years for lighting. 


For different products, estimated annual usage patterns are taken as follows:

  • Washing machine - 220 cycles per year
  • Tumble dryer - 160 cycles per year
  • Refrigerator/Freezer - annual use (always on)
  • Dishwasher - 280 cycles per year
  • Oven - 60 cycles per year using fan heating + 60 cycles per year using convection heating
  • Range hood - 60 minutes running time per day, taking into account lighting and standby power consumption
  • Vacuum cleaner - 50 uses per year
  • Television - 4 hours use per day
  • Light bulbs - 1,000 hours use per year (2.7 hours per day)

The Inefficient Model

Topten's running costs can be directly compared to what the same usage would be from an less efficient model.

The inefficient model that appears in each product list is from an anonymised product from a lower energy class, currently available to buy.  This shows you how much you can save by selecting the most energy efficient products.