Skip to content
Northern Powerhouse European Union

How much does your computer cost you overnight?

Research by a printing and office supplies firm in Trafford has revealed the alarming cost of leaving computers, printers and other devices on outside of office hours.

Research by a printing and office supplies firm in Trafford has revealed the alarming cost of leaving computers, printers and other devices on outside of office hours.

Printerland.co.uk unveiled its findings on 22 April, to coincide with Earth Day.

According to the firm, the UK’s 5.7 million businesses are collectively spending more than £29 billion on energy each year. 

Although the majority of this energy usage comes from large businesses and manufacturers, small businesses can waste an alarmingly large amount of energy by failing to take simple steps in the office.

Savings add up

Printerland estimates that an average photocopier left on standby all day will use around 2628kWh a year. However, turning it off outside of office hours reduces this to 780kWh - a 70 per cent decrease.

Using an average kWh cost of 17.5p, this equates to a saving of around £323.

Failing to switch computers off outside of office hours wastes even more power. According to Printerland, the average UK office of 16 employees can waste up to £1,742 a year by leaving desktop computers on overnight. 

Savings can even be made on less energy-intensive equipment such as watercoolers, which use around 1752kWh if kept on all year. This can be reduced to 520kWh - saving £215 - if only turned on during office hours.

‘Eye-opener for us’

Chris Ralph, IT manager at Printerland, said: “Our research has been a bit of an eye-opener for us and we've already started to make changes in order to bring our own energy consumption down. 

“Some of the things we can do to save energy require so little effort - such as putting appliances on standby - yet make such a big positive impact on the environment.”