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How much energy do I use?

How much energy do I use? Understanding your consumption

Finding out how much energy you use on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis, in either monetary or kWh terms, can quickly be determined following these steps.

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Use your bill to determine your energy consumption

Working out your household energy consumption starts with a good understanding of your energy bill. Unfortunately, this is often easier said than done since energy bills come in all different shape and sizes.

Some of us on dual-fuel tariffs may get one bill for all our energy, while others will get two bills, one for gas and one showing the cost of electricity.

Then there's the frequency: some of us will get monthly bills, others quarterly. Finally, depending on what supplier you’re with and which plan you're on, your bill could have a different layout.

Luckily, there are a few common factors that will help answer the question: how much energy do I use? Use our handy guide to reading your energy bill for help locating the following:

  • Bill period Somewhere in the main summary box, usually located on the front of your bill, you will find the billing period. These can vary significantly, so make sure you make a note of it, otherwise your spend may not make much sense.
  • Energy used This is the crucial figure, and will usually be stated in pounds spent. Your bill will also usually specify whether this is based on a meter reading or is estimated.
  • Total Unfortunately, your energy use is subject to VAT. Also, there may be extra charges for other reasons, so besides the energy spent there will be a total amount owed.
  • Usage Often tucked away on the back your bill, this is arguably the most important bit of info. Your usage breakdown will usually include kilowatt hours used (kWh), the cost per kilowatt hour and your latest meter reading.

To work out how much energy you use the crucial figure is usage. Depending on which supplier you're with or what plan you are on, the same usage figure could lead to a wildly different total cost of electricity.

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Alternately, you can download uSwitch's Switching Made Simple app, then use the built in QR code reader to scan your bill to upload the details of your consumption in seconds.

Read your meter

If you can't find your latest bill, or just don't want to spend the time deciphering it, then you can always go straight to the source. Your gas and electricity meter is the best place to work out how much you've used because it can give you a running total.

To work out how much you're using in a week, just read your meter, make a note and check again in a week.

View our video tutorial on how to read your meter.

Smart meters to track energy usage

Smart meters are the next generation of your gas and electricity meters, and are currently being rolled out across the UK.

A smart meter not only automatically sends meter readings to your supplier for more accurate bills, it comes with an in home display that allows you to track your usage in near-real-time.

How much energy do I use?

Find out when you might be getting your smart meter.

Estimate your level of energy usage

You can also refer to a few lifestyle points such as how much time spent at home or how large your proprety is to roughly determine if you're a high, medium or low energy user.

Find out more about gas and electricity user groups.

Read more…

Why pay more for the same energy?

Find and switch to a better energy deal in minutes