We always tend to see averages and estimates thrown around when we enquire about switching energy providers, hearing that through X tariff we will save X amount of money. However, this amount of ‘saved’ money is based on an average that doesn’t represent a majority part of UK energy consumers, whether that be higher or lower than what is stated. These estimations are made based on the two most recent years available using a median average. This is called a ‘Typical Domestic Consumption Value’ (TDCV). The most recent figures that we have available are those of 2015, which categorise energy consumers in the UK as follows:
There is one sure way to check how much money you are really going to save and that is through using your actual annual usage. If you do not know your actual usage, the figures above are reasonably reliable; however, you should budget to spend a little bit more just to be sure.
Average kWh per day
The exact amount of gas and electricity that use per day will vary depending on the appliances that use within that day. This will also change depending what day and season it is it is. People generally use more energy on a weekend, due to them being at home for longer amounts of time. That said, however, it can be useful to budget based on a daily average across the board. Here's what we think, based on the medium average usage:
- Electricity: 8.5 - 10 kWh per day
- Gas - 33 - 38 kWh per day (higher in winter, lower in summer)
Tariff Comparison Rate
Using your usage figures or most relevant TDCV (see above), you can use the ‘Tariff Comparison Rate’ (TCR) to estimate more accurately what you are likely to spend with your new tariff. A TCR is a quick and easy way to compare energy prices according to any desired time period. Each tariff should contain one of these figures that are expressed in a price per kWh format, combining standing charge, making it easy for you to compare tariffs with one simple figure. For example:
13213 kWh (annual gas usage) x 4.4 p/kWh (TCR) = £581.37 (estimated yearly cost)
How do we compare?
Although it is rather difficult for us to compare gas consumption with other parts of the world due to differentiating alternatives, electricity mayorly remains a constant. As such we have been able to compare a number of European and worldwide countries to see how much electricity we consume per average household in comparison. Bare in mind that climates and technological advancement (etc.) can affect a country’s general consumption habits. In the below graphs we are using information provided via the World Energy Council for the year 2014.
Average electricity consumption per household - Europe (2014)
In this graph we can see that there are countries in Europe that are both lower and higher in average consumption than the UK. We could say that in terms of the countries that we have compared here, we are about average, and as we know, our average consumption has dropped to around 3,100 kWh since 2014, which is extremely positive.
Average electricity consumption per household - World (2014)
In relation to to the countries compared in this graph, the UK have a rather low consumption, joining just Argentina and South Africa in the 3,000s. As we can see here the United States consumes around three times as much as we do; however, Saudi Arabia consumes almost
See more information about how the UK compares in terms of European electricity consumption by clicking the link below: