What is the energy price cap?
If you want to know what the energy price cap is, and how it could affect your electricity and gas bills, then read on.
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What is the energy price cap?
The energy price cap is a set limit on the cost of each unit of gas and electricity used by consumers. Additionally, it sets a maximum standing charge amount. It applies to the standard or default tariffs charged by energy companies.
What is the price cap now?
The price cap is currently set at £1,928. This is based on typical domestic consumption per year, for a dual-fuel customer paying by direct debit, and will vary based on how much energy you use.
To find out exactly what you are being charged you should contact your energy supplier.
Below are current and upcoming price caps:
|Price cap on
|1 Jan to 31 March
|£1,928 a year
|1 Apr to 30 June
|£1,690 a year
*current price cap period
¹2,270 kilowatt hour (kWh) of electricity, 11,500kWh of gas.
What is the current price of gas and electricity per kWh?
From the 1st of January to the 31st of March 2024, the price of electricity and gas per kWh for a customer with typical usage on a default tariff, paying by direct debit, will be:
|Price per kWh
|Daily standing charge*
Figures are rounded to the nearest penny.
*Standing charges are designed to cover the cost of supplying your property with energy. They are usually a fixed, daily amount which doesn’t vary.
For more information about the energy price cap, you can refer to Ofgem’s guide to the energy price cap.
Does this mean my energy costs are capped?
No, energy capping only limits the price of a unit cost of energy. The more units of energy you use, the more you will pay.
When will the price cap change again?
The next price cap change will start on the 1st of April and run until the 30th of June, 2024. The next price cap is £1,690 per year for a typical household, which is 12% lower than the previous price cap.
How much will I pay for energy?
Energy usage can vary due to many factors, including:
- The number of people in your home
- The size of your home
- How energy efficient your home is
- How energy efficient your appliances are
- If people in the home are energy-efficient
The amount you pay for energy can also vary due to location, payment method and what kind of energy meter you have.
How much could I pay to run household appliances?
The energy calculator below will show how the price cap change could affect the cost of using everyday household appliances. Simply update the drop down buttons with your estimated usage to see the costs.
The calculator will show a cost estimate for the current price cap (January-March 2024), and compare that to the previous price cap (October-December 2023), and the price cap before the previous (July-September 2023). So you can see how your energy bills might have changed over time.
Please note: The electricity used by domestic appliances can vary depending on make and model, so we’ve used average power ratings. We have also used the price cap figures for a standard variable rate, so this calculator doesn't take into consideration any fixed tariffs or additional costs.
This calculator was last updated on 08/02/2024.
Cost per month
Based on the current energy price cap
What is the average energy bill in the UK?
Ofgem’s calculation for an average or medium household is based on a 2-3 bedroom house, with 2-3 people living in it, using 11,500 kilowatt hours (kWh) of gas and 2,700 kWh of electricity a year.
They also estimate what low and high household usage is. Remember, these are average, estimated values, but they can help you get a general idea of how much energy you use, and what it might cost you.
Based on the current Ofgem calculations for energy usage, estimated annual costs for energy under the current January 2024 price cap could be:
|Typical annual electricity use (kWh)
|Typical annual gas use (kWh)
|Average annual cost*
|High (4+ bedroom house)
|Medium (2-3 bedroom house)
|Low (Flat or 1 bedroom house)
*The average annual cost is an estimate based on the January 2024 price cap, for a dual-fuel customer paying by direct debit.
Based on figures from the BBC.
What is a kilowatt hour?
A kilowatt hour (kWh) is the standard unit used by energy suppliers to calculate your gas and electricity bill. When you hear energy companies talking about unit costs of energy this is usually referring to the kilowatt hour.
You can understand a kilowatt hour in terms of using 1000 watts of power (a kilowatt) in one hour of time. For example, you’d use 1-kilowatt hour of electricity to power a 100-watt halogen lightbulb for 10 hours, as 100 watts x 10 hours of use = 1000 watt-hours or 1 kWh.
If you swapped that halogen bulb for a more efficient LED bulb that uses 10 watts of electricity, you’d get 100 hours of light for the same 1-kilowatt hour of energy. 10 watts x 100 hours = 1000 watt-hours or 1 kWh.
The same principle applies to using gas too.
Who are Ofgem?
Ofgem is an organisation that regulates energy suppliers. It sets a maximum price that energy suppliers could charge for each unit of energy. The cap isn’t a cap on how much you spend on energy, it’s a cap on how much each unit of energy costs. The more energy you use; the more you’ll pay.
Are you struggling to pay your energy bills?
For more information about the support available from the government including energy saving tips at the ‘Help for Households’ website.
What is the Energy Price Guarantee?
On 1st October 2022, the UK government introduced the Energy Price Guarantee to help with rising energy costs. It was designed to be a temporary, additional measure to protect consumers from the significant rises in the price of wholesale gas.
The Energy Price Guarantee (or EPG) applies to all households in Great Britain. It is in place until April 2024, but the original energy price cap set by Ofgem has dropped below the EPG. Which means you pay the Ofgem energy price cap rate instead.
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- How to get a smart meter – three steps to help support Britain’s energy upgrade.