Watching TV is a a great pastime that can be enjoyed by the entire family, but a traditional high definition television can suck up a lot of energy. To save money and to reduce the strain on the environment, opt for an energy-saving television that still provides desirable features.
Reasons for Choosing an Energy-Efficient TV
The electricity used by a television may seem small in the short term, but using a TV on a regular basis over the course of a year can add over $100 to an electric bill. This is especially true for plasma televisions with high definition, and running a video game console through a TV adds another $50 or more per year to a household electric bill.
Choosing a television that has been rated to be energy efficient can significantly reduce energy needs. Energy-efficient TV models are generally a minimum of 20 percent more efficient than other models, and the costs for a model that has been rated as efficient is comparable with other models. Opting for this type of television when shopping for a new TV will not cost more, but it will save a significant amount in energy costs over its useful life.
Energy Ratings Explained
In the United States, the government allows certain electronics and appliances to carry an Energy Star rating if they meet minimum requirements.
Energy Star televisions must be equipped with a sleep mode option that consumes a maximum of one watt. If there are multiple options for sleep modes on a television model, Energy Star models must default to the option that provides the lowest amount of energy consumption.
The brightness of the screen is one adjustable feature of a television that can significantly impact energy efficiency. For Energy Star models, equations are used to calculate the brightness of the television according to the size of the screen. The aim of these calculations is to allow for a screen that is bright enough to be useful to the viewer without using an excess amount of energy.
Watt usage is another factor that goes into determining the efficiency of a television. Current regulations require any Energy Star TV model over 50 inches to use 108 watts or less. TVs under 50 inches can use a maximum of 75 watts.
The Best Energy-Saving TVs on the Market
While TV manufacturers strive to meet the minimum requirements for energy efficiency in order to qualify for an Energy Star label, many manufacturers do so simply to appeal to consumers. Companies that go beyond these minimum requirements often produce better televisions with maximum levels of energy efficiency.
Sharp and Samsung are dedicated to offering large screen televisions to consumers that meet and exceed Energy Star requirements. Three of the best TV models for energy efficiency are listed below.
• Starter Television: Sharp Aquos 50″
This television offers a big screen without being over-sized, so it’s perfect for the average home. Energy-efficiency ratings are compliant with Energy Star regulations, and the model uses less than one watt of energy in sleep mode. There are three HDMI inputs for high definition peripherals, and all TVs in the Aquos line use a minimum of 50 percent less energy than the previous generation of Sharp Aquos televisions.
• Smart Television: Samsung Smart TV 55″
Viewers who want more frills for a reasonable price can opt for this energy-efficient model. Included wi-fi means that viewers can access the Internet through a wireless connection and utilize apps like Netflix and Hulu. Sleep mode consumes less than half of a watt of energy, and energy consumption for typical use is approximately 53 watts.
• 3D Television: Sony Bravia 52″
For anyone who would like to get a 3D TV, this model is surprisingly energy efficient. Sleep mode consumes approximately 0.20 watts of energy, and active viewing consumes approximately 169 watts. The download mode that is used in conjunction with the included wi-fi compatibility consumes less than 16 watts.
Television can provide a great source of news and entertainment, but energy consumption in a high-definition TV with all the frills can be high. To avoid a high electricity bill and to help the environment, ask about energy ratings when shopping for a new TV.