Are Toasters Energy Efficient?

by Veronique Vincelli
best toaster review comparison test

Toasters are one of the most common small kitchen appliances in North America. As a result, it is important to be aware of their electricity usage and how we can improve their efficiency. Let’s take a look at how much energy different toasters use and how they compare to other popular kitchen appliances. Plus, we’ll offer some tips to help improve your energy savings and monetary savings.


What Does Toaster Wattage Mean?

The watt is a unit that represents electrical power. The more power a machine needs to run, the higher the wattage value will need to be. A slot toaster with high wattage will draw more electricity than a toaster with a low wattage value, but it will also perform better. Balancing the power consumption with toasting ability is one of the more important things to consider when choosing a toaster; the wattage value helps you assess this factor. We’ll use wattage to compare the energy efficiency of various toasters and other kitchen appliances.


How Does Energy Consumption Differ Between 2 and 4 Slice Toasters?

Looking at the red hot heating element of a functioning toaster, you may start to wonder just how much energy is being consumed to heat your toast. A 2 slice toaster uses about 850 watts of power on average, but those that have wide slots or are rated as high power can use an additional 300 watts easily. While this may sound a bit high, the quick cook time for a piece of toast means you’re only adding forty or fifty cents per piece of toast to your electricity bill. Cooking a bagel will take a bit longer of course, but not by any significant amount. The rate you pay for your electricity (in kilowatt hours) will alter your cost per slice, but it won’t be too difficult to find out how efficient your toaster is if you’d like to do so.

4 slice toasters, on the other hand, use a significant amount of energy. Their power rating will range somewhere between 1400 and 2300 watts; at their most powerful, a 4 slice toaster can use almost 3 times as much electricity as the most efficient 2 slice toasters. From these stats, it is easy to see that a 2 slice model is the way to go if you want an efficient toaster and don’t need to toast many slices of bread at one time.

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Are Toaster Ovens More or Less Energy Efficient Than Typical Toasters?

Toaster ovens on average will have a power of roughly 1225 watts. This puts them solidly between 2 slice toasters and 4 slice toasters in terms of energy efficiency. Since a toaster oven has a larger toasting capacity and can also be used to reheat and defrost food as well as broiling, this is likely a more energy efficient choice for people who make a fair amount of toast on a regular basis or would like to use their microwave and electric oven less often.


How Do Toasters Ovens Compare To Other Small Kitchen Appliances?

Toaster ovens will use less electrical energy than standard convection ovens. A toaster oven will use as much as 50% less energy than a conventional oven, so when you’re cooking small meals, it is a great idea to skip the oven and use the toaster oven instead.

The average microwave oven will use about 925 watts of power, so they beat out even some 2 slice bread toasters. As a result, your microwave will be the most energy-efficient appliance you have in your kitchen. Since a microwave heats food from the inside out by vibrating water particles rather than using hot air to cook the outside of the food first, they require a lot less energy to cook more efficiently.

Since average toasters, toaster ovens, and microwaves do not need to preheat, and they all have fairly small capacities, they will all be more energy efficient than a standard full-size oven. Keep in mind that operating an oven will also add a significant amount of heat to your home, which will affect air conditioner efficiency as well. For both energy savings and financial benefits, a toaster oven should be your go-to appliance to toast bread and make other foods.

best toaster review comparison test

How To Reduce the Amount of Energy Your Toaster Uses

While toasters already use an almost negligible amount of electricity, there are a few things you can do that can reduce their energy consumption even more. There are a few features to look for/avoid when buying a new toaster, and one habit you should adopt for your household.

Avoid LED Indicators

Toasters that use LED indicators for ready lights and cooking status will continuously draw energy even when not in use, provided they are still connected to a power source. If you want to be exceptional at cutting back energy usage in your home, purchasing a simpler toaster model without LED indicators will help out just a little bit.

Choose An Energy Star Model

An Energy Star certification should always make it to the top of your most wanted features list when shopping for a new toaster. These models are proven to consume as little energy as is needed to get the job done, and they are durable and reliable machines as well. Since the price point won’t really change if a toaster is Energy Star certified, you can prioritise other features over cost when comparing models.

Look For Cool Touch Sides and A Covered Top

Two of the best features to look for in a toaster are cool touch sides and a covered top. There aren’t many toaster brands that will have a covered top, but those toasters reduce energy consumption by up to 34%. Toasters with cool touch sides will be a lot easier to find, but they are also indicative of a toaster’s ability to keep heat trapped inside the unit rather than letting it escape, so they will be less wasteful of their energy and therefore more efficient.

Don’t Leave It Plugged In

Our biggest tip for saving on energy is to only plug the toaster in while you are actively using it. Leaving your toaster plugged in continuously will draw almost as much power constantly as the toaster uses while it is actually operating. Plus, as the heater is left constantly warm in the machine, it will wear out faster and necessitate more frequent toaster replacement. The manufacturing of a new toaster, its shipment, and the destruction of the old toaster are all processes that use energy, so the longer you can keep a toaster, the better it is for the environment. Don’t leave your toasters plugged in, folks.


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