New research from Consumer Focus suggests Economy 7 users could be paying too much for their energy.
The research shows that Economy 7 customers (who pay less for energy used at night) and Economy 10 customers (which offers cheaper energy in the morning, early afternoon and overnight) may actually be paying more that customers on standard meters.
38% of these customers surveyed by Consumer Focus don’t have storage heaters and/or don’t use appliances at off-peak times, so they get no real benefit from the specialised tariffs.
The research also found 13% didn’t know if their tariff was correct for them, 12% were confused over off-peak times and rates, and 8% couldn’t use enough energy at off-peak rates.
Economy 7 and 10 tariffs can be a great option for certain kinds of households, particularly those who:
- Use more energy at night: As a rule of thumb if you use 40% or more of your electricity at night Economy 7 could be right for you.
- Have an electric storage meter or tank: Electric storage meters allow you to use energy at night which is then slowly released the next day.
- Have timed appliances: If you have appliances like dishwashers or washing machines that you run at night on a timer Economy 7 is more likely to save you money.
For a comprehensive explanation and to see if they’re right for you see our guide to Economy 7.
For a list of Economy 7 tariffs and how much ‘off peak’ electricity you’d have to use to make the tariff effective see this list from Consumer Focus below.
Standard vs Economy 7
|Supplier||Percentage of off peak electricity usage required to make the Economy 7 tariff more cost effective than a standard tariff|
|Ecotricity||20 – 35% (depending on the region)|
|EDF Energy||20% – 30% – (varies depending on region and consumption profile)|
|First Utility||Do not currently offer an Economy 7 tariff|
|Good Energy||15% – 40% (varies depending on region, consumption profile and price rises)|
|Green Energy||20% – Economy 7|
|LoCo2||19% – Planet tariff13% – Pocket + tariff20% – Pocket tariff|
|OVO||30% (some variations depending on region and consumption profile)|
|Spark Energy||Do not currently offer an Economy 7 tariff|
|Utility Warehouse||40% (35% for low users)|