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Air conditioner power consumption and electricity cost

Find out the power consumption and calculate or monitor the electricity usage of your air conditioner to avoid surprises when you get the electricity bill.

How much power does an air conditioner use?

The power consumption depends on the model but, on average, an air conditioner uses around 1500 Watts.

Still, central air conditioner units can use up to 3500 Watts while small portable air conditioner units can use as little as 700 Watts.

If you would like to know the power consumption of your air conditioner, most probably you can find the electricity usage on the unit’s specifications label.

Alternatively, you can search for the device specifications on the internet.

As shown in the picture below, we have searched for a specific model and on the manufacturer’s website, we have found the power consumption details.

Air conditioner electricity usage and electricity cost

Once you know the power consumption of an air conditioner, you can easily estimate the electricity usage and the electricity cost.

For example, according to its specifications, this air conditioner consumes 1300 Watts (W) or 1,3 Kilowatts per hour (kWh). 

1300 W / 1000 = 1,3 kWh

Just note that the power consumption is only a rough estimation because it will vary depending on the settings. 

For example, a lower fan speed will most probably use less power than a medium or higher fan speed.

How to calculate power from voltage and current

If you only know the voltage and current of your air conditioner unit, you can calculate the power consumption, in Watts, using the calculator below.


For more information about Power, Voltage and Current, scroll down to the ‘Electricity Measurement Units’ section.

Air conditioner electricity cost calculator

Once you know the power consumption, the calculator below can be used to estimate the electricity cost of an air conditioner over a period of time.

You just need to adjust the values in the PARAMETERS section to your requirements and the calculator will automatically display the RESULTS section.


For example:

> If your air conditioner has a power rating of 1300 Watts

> If you use it for 10 hours a day and 150 days per year

> If you are paying 0,217 euros (or dollars or pounds, or…) per every kWh you consume 

You will be paying around 2,8 euros (or dollars, or pounds, or…) per day and around 423 euros per year in electricity costs.

How much does electricity cost?

If you don’t know how much you are paying per kWh, you should be able to find the cost per kWh on your electricity contract or in one of the electricity bills.

As an example, the user from the picture below is paying 31,90 cents per kWh.

Nowadays it is very common that the electricity contract details, the monthly or yearly electricity usage, and electricity cost can be accessed online.

how much does electricity cost

Alternatively, if don’t have access to your contract or your electricity bills, this website does show the electricity cost per country.

Home appliances and devices electricity calculators

A few other examples from our ‘Electricity usage and electricity cost calculators‘ page that may be of your interest:

Air conditioner electricity usage monitor

If you want to know the exact electricity usage of an air conditioner, your best option is to use a plug in power meter to measure the exact power consumption and electricity cost. 

Clicking on the image below it will redirect you to the Amazon page where you can have a look at the specifications of the power meter we use for our measurements.

plug in power meter

All of our house appliances and devices like the washing machine, the dishwasher, the TV, or the printer are plugged into a wall socket. 

So, with a power consumption meter, we can determine how much electricity our appliances or devices are using, and, more importantly, we can measure the electricity usage over a period of time.

If you want to find out how you can use a plug in power meter to measure your electricity usage and electricity cost, have a look at this YouTube video.

Plug in power meter

How to lower the electricity bill of an air conditioner

These are some simple and effective ways to reduce the electricity usage and the electricity cost of an air conditioner:

1.- Use the thermostat and timer

Every single degree counts and by adjusting your conditioner by just one degree you could save up to 10% on electricity.

Use the thermostat to set up the temperature to a comfortable but reasonable threshold. And use the timer to power off and on the air conditioner so it is only working when needed.

2.- Use curtains and blinds

The curtains and blinds will help with keeping your home cooler. If you are living in a warm area and using a lot of electricity and money to keep your home cool, it may be worth installing some thick curtains to keep the sun’s rays away.

3.- Power down those heat-emitting appliances and devices

It may not always the possible or feasible but turn off those appliances and devices that emit heat. The thermostat will have to work harder to compensate for the temperature increase and will consume more electricity.

thermal camera appliances heat loss

4.- Improve your home’s insulation

Also, if your home is not well insulated the heat will permeate and force the air conditioner to consume more and more electricity to keep the temperature set in the thermostat.

House insulation thermal image

5.-Keep your air conditioner well maintained

Most air conditioners require regular maintenance. For example, cleaning the coils, cleaning the filters, checking the fins…

If the air conditioner is not well maintained, its efficiency may decrease which may lead to increased power consumption and electricity cost.

Air conditioner electricity usage FAQ

How many watts does an air conditioner use?

The power consumption of an air condition unit depends on the model but, on average, they use around 1500 Watts.

How much energy does an air conditioners use?

Even though energy and power are different terms, in this contest they have a similar connotation.

The power consumption of an air condition unit depends on the model but, on average, they use around 1500 Watts.

How much electricity does a central air conditioner use?

Even though electricity and power are different terms, in this contest they have a similar connotation.

The power consumption of an air condition unit depends on the model but, on average, they use around 3500 Watts.

How much electricity does a portable air conditioner use?

It very much depends on the model.

Some portable air conditioners use as little as 700 Watts per hour and some others use up to 3500 Watts per hour.

Of course, in general, an air conditioner with a higher wattage will be able to cool a bigger space.

Electricity measurement units

Not everybody is familiar with terms like Watts, Kilowatts, or Kilowatt hours so if you would like to learn more about them, have a look at this YouTube video that we have prepared about this topic.

What is a Kilowatt hour (kWh)

Electricity measurement units calculators

Or you can have a look at these electricity measurement units calculators to get a better understanding of:

> What is a Watt (W) and how do transform Watts into Kilowatts

> What is a Kilowatt (kW) and how to transform Kilowatts into Kilowatts an hour

> What is a Kilowatt hour (kWh) and how do transform Kilowatts hours into other units

> What are Power (P), Voltage (V), and Current (I)

Watt (W)
Watt (W) wattage calculator
Kilowatt (kW)
Kilowatt (kW) calculator
Kilowatt hour (kWh)
Kilowatt hour (kWh) calculator
Power, voltage, current
Power, voltage, current calculator

Air conditioner and energy conservation

Energy conservation can be defined as the decision and the act of using less energy

Energy conservation both benefit you and the environment

The act of saving and conserving electricity does benefit you because you will be paying less for your energy bills. 

And it also does benefit the environment because conserving electricity prevents any unnecessary waste of natural resources.

Now, at the individual level, it may not look worth trying to save a few watts here or there. 

Still, every little count and if hundreds or thousands of us do save a little every time, it will make an important contribution towards conserving our natural resources.

Energy conservation calculator

If we could reduce the electricity usage of our air conditioners, even a very small amount, it would make a big impact on preserving our natural resources.


For example, if 9000 households would manage to save as little as 10 Watts per day (0,01 kWh) on air conditioner electricity usage, that would add to 32850 Kilowatt hours (kWh) saved per year. 

9000 households x 0,01 kWh per day x 365 days per year 

32,850 kWh saved per year

That is a considerable amount of electricity, but let’s add additional perspectives for clarity:

> Assuming an average cost of 0,18 euros (or dollars, or pounds, or any other currency) per kWh, we would collectively be saving nearly 6000 euros per year.

> To produce 32,850 kWh of electricity it is necessary to use around 17 metric tons of coal or 56 barrels of residual fuel oil.

Have a look at this page for more information about the number of resources needed to produce electricity.

In any case, it is clear that small energy savings do really count when looking into the bigger picture.

Proven ways to save electricity at home

If you are looking for ideas to save electricity at home, have a look at this YouTube video where we show some useful tips to reduce electricity usage at home and decrease the electricity bill. 

How to save electricity at home
How to save
How to save
How to earn
How to earn


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