How Many Watts Does a Laptop Use - Nature's Generator

How Many Watts Does a Laptop Use

Discover the energy consumption of laptops, from popular models to cost-saving tips, and learn how solar power can reduce your electricity bill.

Laptops have become essential tools in our daily lives. Personally, I depend on my laptop to work from anywhere, keep in touch with friends and family, and indulge in my favorite entertainment. These versatile devices seamlessly integrate work, communication, and leisure. As we increasingly rely on laptops, understanding their energy consumption becomes important, especially with the rising electricity costs. 

If you haven’t considered it yet, read on to get an idea of your laptop’s power usage.

How Many Watts Does a Laptop Use?

Laptops typically use between 30 to 200 watts per hour, depending on the task, with. For example, if you are using your laptop for gaming, then it will consume more power than when you are just surfing the net. For instance, I use my laptop for a mix of tasks throughout the day—writing, video calls, streaming, and occasional gaming. To know your exact usage, you can use an energy monitor (you can purchase a portable one that you can plug your laptop into while you are doing different activities). Some websites also have calculators to estimate power usage based on usage patterns and laptop specifications, or you can check out some specialized software like HWMonitor, Open Hardware Monitor and OuterVision to monitor your laptop’s component power consumption.

How Many Watts Do Popular Laptops Use?

Let’s have a quick look at the wattage used by some popular laptop brands and models:

  • Apple MacBook Pro (M1): 30-60 watts
  • HP Spectre x360: 45-65 watts
  • Samsung Galaxy Book: 30-45 watts
  • Acer Aspire: 40-55 watts
  • Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon: 35-50 watts
  • Dell XPS 13: 30-50 watts

You can easily search for your laptop brand and information on wattage, which is generally readily available.

Laptop Wattage Per Month/Year

If you’re curious about how many watts your laptop uses, the cost depends on daily usage and electricity rates. For instance, using a laptop that draws 30 watts for 10 hours daily at a rate of 15 cents/kWh costs around $0.045/day or $1.35/month. Other things to consider are the manufacturer and size of the laptop.

If you use your laptop for an average of 8 hours per day, here's an estimate of its monthly and yearly electricity consumption based on wattage:

30 watts: 7.2 kWh per month, 86.4 kWh per year, costing around $1.08 per month and $12.96 per year.

70 watts: 16.8 kWh per month, 201.6 kWh per year, costing around $2.52 per month and $30.24 per year.

Gaming laptops (300-500 watts): These consume significantly more electricity, leading to higher monthly and yearly costs. For example:

300 watts: 72 kWh per month, 864 kWh per year, costing around $10.80 per month and $129.60 per year.
500 watts: 120 kWh per month, 1440 kWh per year, costing around $18.00 per month and $216.00 per year.
Note that with gaming laptops, the wattage will depend on hardware settings, screen brightness, CPU wattage, and Graphics Card TGP. Gamers usually prefer high-performance settings, especially since these types of laptops may have high display refresh rates, multiple fans, and more.

Energy-saving tip: Did you know that using sleep mode on your laptop can save a significant amount of energy? BUT note that though it uses much less energy than when the laptop is fully on, it can still draw up to five watts per hour. Sleep mode is perfect for short breaks. However, for longer periods of inactivity, turning off your laptop completely is the best way to conserve energy.

Factors Affecting Laptop Wattage
Understanding what affects your laptop's power consumption can help you make informed decisions about its usage and potential energy savings. Here are the key factors that influence how many watts your laptop uses:
  • Screen Size and brightness - Larger screens use more power. The screen's brightness level also directly affects power consumption, so lowering the screen brightness or choosing power-saving screen modes can help lower power consumption.

  • Battery Condition - Older laptops may consume more power due to battery degradation. Ensuring your battery is in good condition is a must to help optimize power usage.

  • Graphics Card - A powerful graphics card can increase power consumption, especially during intensive tasks like gaming or video editing.

  • Charging Practices - Frequent charging can increase power consumption. Optimal charging practices can help reduce energy usage.

Laptop showing Nature's Generator Homepage with solar generators

Connecting to Solar Power

The cost of electricity varies significantly depending on your location. On average, electricity in the United States costs about 15 cents per kWh, but this can range from as low as 10 cents per kWh in some states to as high as 28 cents per kWh in others.

Understanding the cost of your laptop (and any other appliances or electronics) is crucial if you really want to save, and a smart way to save on high electricity bills is through Investing in a solar generator. 

Switching to solar power can lead to significant savings. For example, powering a laptop with solar energy can cut your electricity bill, especially if you use energy-intensive devices like gaming laptops. Solar panels can provide a sustainable and cost-effective power solution, reducing your reliance on grid electricity, lowering your overall energy costs, and of course, it’s eco-friendly.

If you are considering going solar for your laptop and other devices, be sure to check out Nature’s Generator Lithium 1800. This compact power station offers mobility with impressive performance capabilities, making it a must-have for outdoor activities, WFH setup, cabin usage, and more. It is powered by LiFePO4 battery technology, the safest lithium battery technology on the market, and has a solid 1800W power output with an impressive 3600W surge capacity. It also has a 1440-watt-hour battery capacity that will surely keep your appliances running longer.  For more product information, feel free to get in touch with the Nature's Generator team here.

Final Thoughts

Generally, laptops are not power-hungry devices and you can optimize to use lower energy consumption. However, with the rising cost of electricity, it's important to consider all electronics used especially those that you use for long periods. You can also turn into solar power as a cost-effective and environmentally friendly solution to power various household appliances, including laptops. This can lead to significant savings on your electricity bill while also reducing your carbon footprint.


   * We want to give credit where credit is due. Professional writer, Michelle Ann Gamana, contributed research and content to this blog titled: How Many Watts Does a Laptop Use Thank you, Michelle, for your contributions!