‘Cheap’ appliances warning as inexpensive purchase could hike bills higher

Consumers have been urged to be careful when buying appliances as the cheapest option may cost more in the long run.

Researchers at Which? tested several applainces that had a cheap price and found many had a low energy efficiency, including a kettle that cost just £7 to buy but costs over £50 a year to run, more than double the average costs.

Natalie Hitchins, head of Home Products and Services at Which?, said: “When buying a new household appliance, don’t be fooled by a low price point as this can mask bigger costs in the long run.

“Which?’s robust testing goes further by including energy efficiency ratings so customers have a much clearer idea of the true cost of the product they’re buying.

“When looking to buy a new appliance you can check the Which? website for our recommended Eco Buys and tips on how to cut your energy costs generally.”

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The group tested the Cookworks Plastic Kettle 825/6344 (in white) and 874/2119 (in black), priced at £7, but the cheap Argos kettle costs £50.74 a year to run.

This is more than double the average running costs for a kettle, at £23. The most energy efficient kettle costs just £7 a year to run.

Fridge freezer

The Hisense RB327N4WW1 fridge freezer may seem cheap at £399 but it costs £113.12 a year in energy bills, over £30 more than the average running costs for a freestanding machine.

The team tested similar models and found the most efficient cost just £40 a year to run.


The Samsung NV7B41307AS built-in oven sells for £439 but it had the highest annual costs for a built-in oven, at £79.47.

The average running cost for this type of oven is £64 while the most efficient device costs just £53 a year.

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Also scoring poorly for energy efficiency is the Beko DIN15X20 dishwasher, despite the attractive £279 price tag.

This costs £88.89 a year to run while average running costs are £78. The most efficient model costs around £55 a year to run.

Washing machine

The Hotpoint H8 W946WB sells for £499 but has running costs of £86.22 a year, using 35 percent more energy on a main cottons 40C wash compared to most 9kg machines.

Average running costs were £65 a year, while the most efficient device costs £46 a year.

Tumble dryer

The Hoover-HLEV10LG vented tumble dryer costs £279 but costs more than five times as the most efficient heat pump dryer, with costs above £200.

Average running costs for vented tumble dryers were £147 while condenser machines cost £140 annually. The most energy efficient heat pump device costs £57 a year to run.

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The Samsung UE43CU8000 has a cheap price tag at £369 but it costs £29.57 a year to run.

This compares with average yearly costs for a 43-inch TV at £24.82 while the cheapest TVs costs less than £12 a year to run.


The Dimplex 3kW Rugged Fan Heater costs just £79 to buy but using it regularly during the colder months would be hugely expensive.

Using the device on max power for four hours a day everyday for 20 weeks would costs £464.80.

More efficient options

Which?’s Eco Buys highlights some more expensive to buy devices that provide big savings over time.

  • Bosch SPS4HMW53G dishwasher – £578 purchase price – £55.39 a year running costs
  • Samsung WW80T554DAW/S1 washing machine – £449 purchase price – £54.33 a year running costs
  • Asda George Home GDK101B-22 kettle £30 purchase price – £11.17 a year running costs.

For the latest personal finance news, follow us on Twitter at @ExpressMoney_.

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