Are Boiling Water Taps Expensive To Run? (A Cost Breakdown)
Boiling water taps are still one of the most requested and wished-for items as part of a new kitchen design. However, a question I always get asked is: Are boiling water taps expensive to run?
In this post, I’ll break down the costs involved, give an idea of the running costs for a boiling water tap and compare it to that of a standard kettle.
Let’s get into it!
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In a hurry? Here’s my key takeaway:
🚰 Boiling water taps offer a convenient and energy-efficient alternative to kettles, potentially reducing daily energy costs while providing instant hot water.
Factors such as frequency of use, the tap’s energy efficiency and maintenance schedule will all affect the overall running cost of a boiling water tap.
Read on to learn more…
How much do boiling water taps cost?
Costs for boiling water taps can range from around £500 to £3000 or more, depending on the brand and functionality.
High-end models with advanced features and premium finishes tend to be at the higher end of the price spectrum, while basic models may be more cost-effective.
Ongoing running costs should also be factored in, as the energy efficiency and maintenance requirements will impact the overall costs.
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are boiling water taps expensive to run?
Boiling water taps are not very expensive to run, especially when compared to other electrical household items.
As a non-scientific general guide, a boiling water tap costs 10.7p to have on standby and use 3L of boiling water a day.
Here’s how I got to those numbers:
Boiling Water Tap Running Cost
If we use the ever-popular Quooker tap as an example. (Other brands will give different results)
Quooker has a standby rate of 10W/Hr x 24hrs = 240W a day (0.24kW)
If we then take an average electricity price of 28p per kWh this would mean:
28p x 0.24kW = 6.7p a day on standby.
However, when the boiling water is used, the tank refills and the freshwater is heated back up. This recharge cost is estimated to be 1p/litre.
So, say you use 3L of water a day, there will be an additional 3p cost for getting that freshwater up to temperature.
Total cost of running a boiling water tap = 10.7p per day (as an example)
Note: Different makes/models of taps will have different standby and refill energy usage and costs, which will affect the overall daily running costs. This is only meant as a guide.
boiling water tap vs kettle Energy Use and cost
Comparing the energy use and running cost of a boiling water tap to a kettle is very difficult and has many variable factors that make it pretty much impossible to work out 100%.
Electricity costs alone can vary widely depending on the region, time of day, and specific energy tariffs. This variability can affect the running costs of both boiling water taps and kettles.
However, as another non-scientific, general guide a kettle will cost 14.4p a day vs a boiling water tap costing 10.7p.
Here’s how I got to those numbers:
A typical kettle will have a 3000w (3kW) element.
Say we boil the kettle 4 times a day (the average according to tameside.gov) but use the same 3L of water. So we boil 0.75L each time. (Enough for two good-sized mugs of tea/coffee ☕️)
I just timed my 3kW kettle to boil 0.75L and it took 1min 53sec.
1.53mins = 113seconds. 113/3600 (seconds in an hour) = 0.31hrs
3kW x 0.31hrs = 0.093kWh. 28p x 0.093kWh = 2.6p
2.6p x 4 (times a day) = 10.4p (to boil 0.75L in a 3kW kettle 4 times a day)
However, it’s not as simple as this. 😂
According to a survey taken by the Energy Saving Trust, 67% of people admit to overfilling their kettle. And that’s just the ones that actually admitted it!
In reality, say we overfill our kettle by 1/3 each time (which I think is a conservative estimate). Our 0.75L becomes 1.08L.
I again timed my kettle boiling 1.08L and it took 2 mins 35sec. Which is 3.6p to boil. 3.6p x 4 (times a day) = 14.4p.
Note: This does not factor in that you may boil your kettle more than 4 times a day if individuals are making separate cups of tea and not maximising the amount of water they boil each time.
It also assumes you only overfill a kettle by 1/3 of my particular example. In reality many will overfill by much more and re-boil water throughout the day. Causing more energy and water waste/cost.
This is also based on my kettle. Different models may be more or less energy efficeint and powerful, leading to different results and costs.
This is really the downside to the kettle.
You never use exactly the right amount of water every time. So the more water you overfill with and waste and the more times you boil the kettle throughout the day, the more it will cost you!
For those who use a kettle a lot, the cost difference compared with a boiling water tap will be even greater.
The more you use a kettle and the more you use it inefficiently, the greater the running cost difference will be compared with a boiling water tap.
Are Boiling Water Taps Cost-Effective?
Yes and no. ⚖️
For the vast majority of people and use cases, a boiling water tap will be more cost-effective to use on a daily basis when compared with a kettle. This is in terms of energy and water used.
As a boiling water tap is only heating and using the exact amount of water you need, this really helps!
However, once you factor in the initial cost of the boiling water tap as well as the ongoing maintenance costs (replacement filters/scale control etc..) compared with the cost of a kettle, it will take an awfully long time to make your money back.
You basically won’t. (unless it’s a very expensive kettle! 😂)
BUT….that’s not the point of boiling water taps. They are a lifestyle and convenience choice that you pay for up front.
While they might not always be cost-effective in the strictest sense, the convenience and time savings can be significant for many.
Should I turn off A boiling water tap at night?
No, it’s best to leave your boiling water tap switched on.
This helps maintain the temperature of the water in the tank and can help increase the longevity of your tank.
If you are going away for a longer period, such as a month or more, that’s when It’s recommended to turn off your boiling tap.
Some models come equipped with a holiday mode which will lower the stored water temperature from boiling point down to 60°C. This lowers the power consumption and saves energy.
Do boiling water taps use a lot of electricity?
No, not really. Especially when compared to other household electrical items.
Quooker says their taps use 10W while on standby. Which is of similar electrical use as your wifi router. (Which we all leave on all the time!)
Qettle says that their 4L tank uses 35W while on standby, which is the equivalent of 2-5 LED spotlights (depending on their exact wattage).
A Grohe Red Duo boiling water tap uses 15W while on standby. Similar to a laptop charger.
how much does a quooker tap cost to run?
Quooker says that their taps use 10W an hour while on standby, which equates to approximately 6.7p a day. (based on 28p per kWh cost)
However, this cost will vary slightly depending on your electricity tariff and doesn’t take into account the extra power used to heat fresh water when it refills itself. Nor does it take any maintenance costs into account.
- Are Boiling Water Taps Expensive To Run? (A Cost Breakdown)
- Are Boiling Water Taps Worth It? – Pros, Cons & Advice
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Michael is a kitchen designer from the UK. He's been designing and project managing new kitchen installations for over 10 years. Before that, he was an electrician and part of a team that fitted kitchens. He created Kitchinsider in early 2019 to help give people advice when it comes to getting a new kitchen.