How much electricity does a PC use it is rather difficult to calculate because many factors do affect the electricity consumption.

For example, a PC that is used for gaming may have a very power hungry graphic card or a desktop computer used for cryptocurrency mining may have the CPU working non stop at 100% capacity. 

In those cases, the electricity usage it is going to much higher than a PC that it is only used for browsing the internet.

On this page you will learn:

How much electricity does a PC use

> How to calculate the electricity cost of a PC

Electricity measurement units: Watt, Kilowatt or Kilowatt hour

> How to lower the electricity bill

> What is energy conservation and how does it benefit you and the environment

Alternatively, you may want to fast forward to the PC electricity cost calculator.

How much electricity does a PC use

In average, a computer can consume between 60 to 300 Watts, but this is only a very rough estimation.

Desktop computer electricity usage

If you don’t know the power consumption of your computer, or if you want to know the exact electricity usage, your best option is to use a plug in power meter to measure the electricity consumption. 

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

All of our house appliances and devices like the washing machine, the dishwasher, the TV or the printer are plugged to 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.

A plug in power meter displaying the power usage of a device

Electricity cost calculator

If you know the power consumption of your PC, the calculator below can be used to estimate the energy consumption and the electricity cost of a PC.

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 desktop computer has:

> A power rating of 300 Watts

> It is in use 10 hours per day and 350 days per year

> You are paying 0,2 euro (or dollars, or pounds, or …) per every kWh you consume 

You will be paying around 200 euro (or dollars, or pounds, or…) per year in electricity costs.

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

Fridge electricity usage calculator icon
Refrigerator
Freezer electricity usage calculator icon
Freezer
Dishwasher electricity and water usage calculator icon
Dishwasher
Coffee machine electricity usage calculator icon
Coffee machine

Electricity measurement units

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

What is a Kilowatt hour (kWh)

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

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

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

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

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

Watt (W)
Watt
Kilowatt (kW)
Kilowatt
Kilowatt hour (kWh)
Kilowatt hour
Power, voltage, current
Power, Voltage, Current

How to lower the electricity bill

A desktop computer can save quite a bit of electricity by just correctly adjusting some settings.

1.-  Adjust the energy settings

If not in use, make sure that your computer goes to sleep mode within a reasonable time. We have our computers setup to go into sleep mode after 10 minutes of inactivity.

Additionally, you may want for your computer to turn off the screen after a few minutes of inactivity.

2.- Quit or uninstall unnecessary programs

Most of the computer programs use CPU and GPU as well as RAM and Hard Drive to run. Specially, those programs that use significant amount of CPU or GPU will significantly increase the electricity usage.

And that is about it… if your computer is setup to go into sleep, turn off the screen during inactivity as well as it is not running any power consuming computer programs, it will not use that much electricity.

If you think that your computer is using too much electricity, you may need professional advice. Who knows, maybe someone has got access to your computer and it is running some software for his/her own benefit.

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 on your energy bills. 

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

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

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

 

For example, if 9000 households would manage to save as little as 10 Watts per day (0,01 kWh) that would add to 32850 Kilowatt hour (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 euro (or dollars, or pounds, or any other currency) per kWh, we would collectively be saving nearly 6000 euro 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 to this page for more information about the amount 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.

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

Two pie charts showing what home appliances and devices are using the most electricity at home.

We hope that you have found the information on this page informative and of value. 

If so, please consider to share or subscribe to our newsletter.

We dedicate a considerable amount of time and effort to create content and your support and engagement will encourage us to keep moving forward.

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