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What's the difference between economy 7 and 10 tariffs?

Economy 7 and 10 tariffs are designed to give you a cheaper electricity rate at night and a more expensive rate during the day. The key difference is the number of off-peak hours you get – 7 hours on Economy 7, and 10 hours on Economy 10.

Used properly, they could save you money. But whether you’ll benefit or not depends on your energy use habits. Read on to find out more about the differences and if either tariff is right for you.

Peter Earl From the Energy team
4
minute read
posted

What is an economy 10 tariff?

An economy 10 tariff is also a ‘time-of-use’ tariff that has 10 hours of the cheaper rate rather than 7. However, here your off-peak periods may be divided throughout the day and night. For example, you may get a five-hour off-peak period during the night and a three-hour and two-hour off-peak period during the day.

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Can I save with Economy 7 or Economy 10?

Economy 7 and 10 tariffs are designed to give you a cheaper electricity rate at night and a more expensive rate during the day. There aren't any gas tariffs. Used properly, they could save you money. But whether you’ll benefit or not depends on your energy use habits. They are primarily designed for people who have storage heaters.

If you change your energy habits or your heating system without changing your tariff you could find yourself overpaying as peak daytime rates can be expensive.

Who might benefit from an economy 7 or 10 tariff?

People who tend to use more energy at night might benefit from these tariffs. For example:

  • if you’re a ‘night owl’ and watch TV or play computer games into the small hours
  • if you charge your gadgets overnight or have a timer on your washing up machine or dishwasher so they start during the off-peak period
  • if you have a storage heater which heats up your water or your radiators overnight

Money Saving Expert advises only signing up for an economy 7 tariff if you use around 40% of your electricity at night.

One word of warning though, the Fire Brigade recommend that you don't use washing machines and tumble dryers unattended overnight because of the fire risk.

How do I know if I’m on an economy 7 or 10 tariff?

You may be on an economy 7 or 10 tariff without even realising it. If you’re unsure, the easiest way to check is to look at the ‘your electricity use in detail’ section on your energy bill. If you’re on an economy 7 tariff it will be divided into night and day readings. You will also have an economy 7 or 10 meter which show two readings. Some meters also have a sticker on or the name written on it too.

Compare and save

Economy 7 and 10 tariffs may not suit everyone. If you use a lot of energy during the day and aren’t prepared to change your energy habits to benefit from the off-peak periods, you could end up paying more.

If you’re on an economy 7 or 10 tariff and don’t want to be, talk to your energy provider about switching to another tariff. Most energy providers won’t charge you for switching to a normal meter. Alternatively, consider switching suppliers to see if you can find a better deal elsewhere.

Find out about comparing different energy tariffs including Economy 7 with us today - but unfortunately we can't help you compare Economy 10. Comparing with us could be the ideal way to find a cheaper tariff.

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