As the energy crisis drags on, many people are asking, is electricity cheaper at night?
Here’s our guide on off-peak and peak electricity – we cover everything you need to know to make a decision on whether these tariffs suit you.
But yes, electricity is cheaper at night. You can benefit from these lower night-time prices if you’re on an off-peak tariff. Let’s delve into these further.
Is electricity cheaper at night?
In a multi-rate tariff, energy suppliers charge less per kWh during off-peak hours. The off-peak hours are during the night when there is reduced demand for electricity.
In a single rate tariff, you pay the same rate for electricity across the entire day.
In a multi-rate tariff, your bill will is divided into the different times of day, with your energy meter recording your consumption separately for each.
Your off-peak hours are defined in your energy tariff, but a typical energy supplier in an economy 10 tariff has off-peak hours between 10 pm and 8 am.
What are the advantages of off-peak electricity tariffs?
The biggest is the cost per unit. If you are on an economy 7 or economy 10 tariff, the cost of electricity during these off-peak times per unit will be lower than a standard tariff or in “peak times”.
The businesses that benefit most from an off-peak tariff primarily use electricity at night, i.e. pubs, bars or restaurants. However, it probably won’t be beneficial for your average company to switch to an Economy 7 or Economy 10 tariff.
Homeowners can maximise the benefit of an off-peak electricity tariff by waiting to use the washing machine, dishwasher and car charging facilities during the off-peak hours.
What are peak and off-peak times for electricity?
The energy tariff you’ve agreed with your supplier will define your off-peak times. However, more generally:
Economy 7 tariff is a setup which has two different electricity rates. A day rate and a seven-hour off-peak rate. The Off-peak rate is typically between 12am and 7am, and the peak is every other hour, 7am to 12am.
Economy 10 tariff is another tariff where you pay less during off-peak times. The Off-peak rate is typically between 10pm and 8am, and the peak is every other hour, 8am to 10pm.
Will using an off-peak tariff definitely be cheaper?
No, it depends on when you use the most electricity.
If you tend to use your electricity throughout the day and business operations are 9-5, an off-peak tariff like the Economy 7 probably won’t benefit you at all.
But, if your primary electricity consumption occurs in the early hours, this will indeed make electricity cheaper at night.
Can I reduce my energy bills by using more electricity at night?
As electricity prices are stubbornly stuck at record highs, questions are being asked about being able to reduce both household and business electricity bills by using electricity later in the evening.
The answer to this is completely dependent on your energy tariff. If you are on a standard, single-rate tariff, then the answer is no; unfortunately, you’ll be charged the same unit rate whenever you use electricity.
However, suppose you are on an off-peak tariff that caters to it, for example, Economy 7 or 10, then yes. In that case, if you wait till the evening to use most of your electricity, you will reduce your electricity bill.
How can I cut the cost of my electricity?
There are plenty of ways to reduce the cost of electricity, especially in these testing times. Here are a couple of ideas to get you started:
- Use a smart meter
- Switch to an off-peak tariff
- Compare electricity prices
- Smart timers for high electricity usage electronics
Read our full guide on electricity consumption and how you can reduce your overall energy usage by following a few simple tips.
Compare electricity tariffs
Whether you are looking to compare business electricity prices or household prices, you can use the AquaSwitch comparison service below:
*Due to the current energy crisis, we are currently unable to compare household tariffs.