Washing Machine Power Consumption: As per Star Rating, Capacity and Type [2021]

Last Updated on October 22nd, 2021 by RefrigeratorPro Team

Washing machines are one of the most common home appliances in India. Living without one is not easy, and finding a family without a washing machine is becoming tough these days. This is not only because the prices of washing machines have gone down, but also because they have become more cost effective in the energy they consume.

Washing machines are majorly of three types- (Fully Automatic) Top Loading, Front Loading and Semi-Automatic Washing Machines. In this post, we will discuss, how much energy each type of washing machine consumes on an average. However, before we discuss about energy consumption of washing machines, let us understand what is BEE star rating.

BEE Star Rating

Star rating system is an initiative by the Indian government to help buyers in purchasing home appliances. This rating system came into existence in the year 2006 and it comes under the Ministry of Power. Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) has made it mandatory for most of the home appliances to display a star label on top of each model with star rating and wattage information. So that just by looking at the label, you can get an idea about its energy efficiency.

Higher star rating means high energy efficiency and lower rating indicates more energy consumption. For example, highest rating of 5 star means that the model will consume least amount of energy in its category, while 1 star is the lowest rating and a 1-star rated washing machine consumes highest amount of energy.

However, please not that washing machine does not come under ‘mandatory’ appliance category for BEE rating. This is the reason why you will find some washing machines without any star rating.

Washing Machine Wattage

One of the best ways to get an idea about power consumption of washing machines is through their wattage.

Washing machines in India come with rating of 300 Watt to 3,000 Watt.

Semi automatic washing machines come with 300 Watt to 400 Watt rating. Top load washing machines are rated slightly higher from 350 Watt to 500 Watt. And Wattage of front load washing machines is usually between 2,000 & 2,500 Watt, but can go to as high as 3,000 Watt in some cases.

Top Load Washing Machine Power Consumption

We analyzed more than 70 top load washing machines to come up with average wattage numbers.

CapacityWattage
6 kg360
7 kg400
8 kg480

Now, if you are wondering the relationship between watt and energy consumption, then don’t worry, we are here to help.

Let us understand with the help of an example. As you can see 6 kg top loader averages 360 watts. This means that if it runs for one hour, it will consume 360 watt hours energy. This is equal to 0.36 kWh, which is the unit of power.

Hence a 6 kg top load washing machine will consume 0.36 units of electricity if it runs for one hour. Similarly, 7 kg washing machine will consume 0.4 units of electricity when it runs for one hour.

Please note that these numbers denote power consumption when the machines run at full capacity. Hence, one accepted method of denoting power consumption of washing machines is energy consumed in one cycle of the machine per kg, or kWh / kg / cycle.

Indian rating agency BEE uses this unit to measure the star rating of washing machines as well. As of 2021, it is not mandatory for washing machines brands to give energy efficiency rating, but almost all major brands come with some models with BEE labels.

This chart gives you a fare idea about how much power a top loader consumes per kg per cycle.

Star ratingEnergy consumption (E) per cycle
kWh/kg/cycle*
1-star0.0171 to 0.0185
2-star0.0158 to 0.0171
3-star0.0145 to 0.0158
4-star0.0132 to 0.0145
5-star<= 0.0132
* Wash Cycle- Cotton 30 °C

From this chart, we can find out some more information.

For example, we can get an idea how much energy a 5-star top load washing machine will consume in every wash cycle.

6-kg 5-star top load washing machine will consume 6*0.0132 = 0.079 units of power when run in full capacity in every cycle (rinse / wash). Hence, if you run 10 cycles in a month, it will consume 0.79 units or less.

This table denotes the power consumption per cycle when top load washing machine runs at full capacity.

Star Rating6 kg7 kg8 kg
1-star0.1110.1300.148
2-star0.1030.1200.137
3-star0.0950.1110.126
4-star0.0870.1020.116
5-star0.0790.0920.106

As you can see, every 1 star decrease in the rating increases the power consumption by 8 – 10%. Also, as far as top loaders are concerned, change in star rating does not change the power consumption significantly.

Capacity Top Load Washing Machine Power Consumption in Units (kWh)
Hour Month Year
6 kg 0.36 10.8 129.6
7 kg 0.4 12 144
8 kg 0.48 14.4 172.8

Here, monthly and yearly numbers denote power consumption when the top load washing machine is run every day for one hour.

Front Load Washing Machine Power Consumption

Most front load washing machines do not come with watt rating. However, a typical front loading washing machine comes with a wattage of 2000 to 2,500 watts rating.

However, it is important to note that this rating is effective while using heater while washing.

Power consumption of washing machine majorly depends on two components. Motor, that spins the drum and the heating equipment. Bulk of the power consumed by front load washing machines is from its heating equipment.

Hence, if you use heater during the wash cycle, then it will consume around 2 units of electricity when run for an hour. However, if you do not use the heater, then the power consumption decreases significantly. According to some studies, front loaders working without heater can consume as low as 0.5 units per hour when working without heater.

Just like top loaders, front loaders also come with star rating. Let us take a look at the amount of power consumed by front loaders as per their star rating.

Star RatingEnergy consumption (E) per cycle
kWh/kg/cycle*
1-star0.16 to 0.18
2-star0.14 to 0.16
3-star0.11 to 0.14
4-star0.09 to 0.11
5-star<= 0.09
*Wash Cycle- Cotton 60 °C

As you can see, BEE mandates that the energy consumption data should be as per standard cotton 60 °C programme for front loaders. Hence, if you do not use heater, the number will decrease by around 60 to 70%.

Now let us see what all we can find out from this chart.

6-kg 5-star front load washing machine will consume 6*0.09 = 0.54 units of power when run in full capacity in one 60 °C wash mode cycle. Hence, if you run 10 cycles in a month, it will consume 5.4 units or less.

Below table denotes the power consumption per cycle when front load washing machine runs at full capacity.

Star Rating6 kg7 kg8 kg
1-star1.0801.2601.440
2-star0.9601.1201.280
3-star0.8400.9801.120
4-star0.6600.7700.880
5-star0.5400.6300.720

It is interesting to note that 1 star decrease in the rating leads to higher power consumption as compared to top loaders. Also, 1 star front loading washing machine consume roughly twice the energy as compared to 5-star front loaders.

Capacity Front Load Washing Machine Power Consumption in Units (kWh)
Hour Month Year
6 kg 2.1 63 756
7 kg 2.3 69 828
8 kg 2.5 75 900

Here, monthly and yearly numbers denote power consumption when the front load washing machine is run every day for one hour.

Semi-Automatic Washing Machine Power Consumption

Semi-automatic washing machines are the most power efficient washing machines in the market. A typical semi-automatic washing machine comes with 50 to 200 watt power rating. This is quite less.

50 watts means 0.05 kilowatt, which means that it will consume 0.05 units of power when run for one hour.

This means that for a semi-automatic washing machine (of 50-watt rating) to consume 1 unit of power, it will have to run for 20 hours. As you can see, this type washing machine wins hands down when compared to front load washing machine and fully automatic top load washing machine.

Also, star rating system for semi-automatic washing machine is same as for fully automatic top load washing machine.

Star ratingEnergy consumption (E) per cycle
kWh/kg/cycle
1-star0.0171 to 0.0185
2-star0.0158 to 0.0171
3-star0.0145 to 0.0158
4-star0.0132 to 0.0145
5-star<= 0.0132

Below table denotes the power consumption per cycle when Semi-automatic washing machine runs at full capacity.

Star Rating6 kg7 kg8 kg
1-star0.1110.1300.148
2-star0.1030.1200.137
3-star0.0950.1110.126
4-star0.0870.1020.116
5-star0.0790.0920.106

This means that 6-kg 5-star semi-automatic washing machine will consume 6*0.0132 = 0.079 units of power when run in full capacity in every cycle (rinse / wash). Hence, if you run 10 cycles in a month, it will consume 0.79 units or less.

Similarly, 8-kg 5-star semi-automatic washing machine consumes 8*0.0132 = 0.1-unit power when run on full capacity in each cycle.

Conclusion

Washing machine’s power consumption depends on the type of washing machine, capacity and star rating. Washing machines come with different power ratings ranging from 50 watt to 2,500 watt

Front load washing machines consume most amount of power, while semi-automatic washing machines consume least amount of power. In each type, 5 star washing machines are most power efficient ones. Effect of increase or decrease in star rating on power consumption is more significant in front loading washing machines as compared to top loaders. Hence, if you are planning to buy a fully automatic washing machine or a semi-automatic one, then star rating may not be as important as compared to if you plan to buy a front loader.

That’s about it. We hope that you we were able to find out the answers to your questions in this post. If you still have questions, then you can ask us in the comment section. We will be happy to answer your questions.

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