Machine speed, incline ability and noise probably made you wonder, how much electricity does a treadmill use? Should I worry about my electricity bill now that I’m doing regular treadmill workouts?
We all want to stay fit and healthy. But most of us are probably not too keen about paying extra for our machine’s energy needs.
After all, the treadmill alone is already an investment. However, there is no need to worry because treadmills do not consume much electricity.
Specifically, a conventional treadmill only consumes approximately 300 to 900 watts.
This treadmill power consumption level is not high enough to put your monthly budget off balance.
However, there are factors affecting treadmill energy usage. So, for this article, let’s identify these contributing elements.
I’ll also explain how to calculate energy consumption based on your treadmill routine.
What Factors Affect Treadmill Electricity Consumption?
Even if two users share one treadmill at home, they will have different electricity consumption levels. Why is that?
Because many factors affect “how much electricity does a treadmill use”. Here are some of them.
Horsepower is the unit of measurement that represents your treadmill motor size or capacity. It can range from 1.5 to 4.0 hp.
Treadmills made for walking exercises typically have lower motor capacities than those for running or intense workouts.
Also, the higher the horsepower, the more the treadmill can support faster speeds at extended periods.
This factor is relevant to treadmill motor size or capacity.
That’s because you can convert horsepower into watts and then use it to estimate the electric expenditures of your treadmill.
Here’s a table showing the wattage value for typical treadmill motor capacities.
Note that you can compute this yourself by multiplying the horsepower by 746.
|Treadmill Motor Capacity (Horsepower)
|Treadmill Wattage (Watts)
Notice that wattage increases as the motor capacity goes up.
But keep in mind that there are also treadmill models with power-saving features.
Answering the question “how much electricity does a treadmill use” depends on your speed setting during exercise.
The faster you run, the higher the power requirements to shift and maintain a certain speed level.
It is similar to how cars burn more fuel as drivers drive faster.
However, this factor is trickier to measure as most people and their treadmill workouts have varying speeds.
Most start at a modest pace, then boost their speed at some point before going back to normal or walking speed.
The treadmill motor requires more power to push the deck up and the person using the machine.
But while adjusting the incline results in higher power consumption, the increase is not that significant.
Of course, it’s a different case when you use a steep incline for the entire duration of your treadmill run.
However, that is unlikely, given that runners typically use different incline levels during training or exercise.
So, don’t worry about using too much electricity when you run on a sloped deck.
Runners are encouraged to use inclines to level up their treadmill runs and achieve weight loss.
I’ve decided to test it with my wattage meter and the NordicTrack X22i Incline Trainer to understand this factor further.
I started by running the treadmill at 6kph and 0% incline, allowing it to run for 5 minutes.
Afterwards, I changed the incline settings and noted the wattage reading after letting it run for 1 minute.
Here’s what I’ve recorded.
|Treadmill Incline Setting
|Wattage Meter Reading
|0 to -3%
|-3 to -6%
|-6 to 0%
|0 to 3%
|3 to 6%
|6 to 10%
|10 to 15%
|15 to 20%
|20 to 25%
|25 to 30%
|30 to 35%
|35 to 40%
The table clearly shows the steady increase in wattage as I increase the incline.
I also observed the same increase interval as I lower back the deck.
But, as you can see, the wattage increments are not that significant.
Exercise Time Duration
How much time do you spend on your treadmill workout? Running on the treadmill for an hour will naturally use more electricity than 30 minutes.
But then again, the electricity consumption level is negligible compared with the health benefits you get from exercising for long periods.
Use of Extra Features
Standard treadmills are ideal for casual use. But nowadays, modern units feature heart rate monitoring, calorie counter, distance tracker, music player, etc.
All these need electricity to work and, of course, affect your overall energy consumption.
User’s Body Weight
How much electricity does a treadmill use if you are on the heavy side? Well, your weight and size do affect the machine’s energy consumption.
The reason is that the circuit board signals the electric motor to use more power upon detecting resistance. And resistance happens as your feet strike the deck.
Naturally, resistance is higher the more weight you have.
Over time, an old treadmill will no longer perform like it used to. Its motor will gradually deteriorate and need more power to work efficiently.
Sometimes, the problem may also be due to an old belt. When it needs replacement or lubrication, friction can make the motor work extra.
How Much Electricity Does a Treadmill Use?
Several factors can influence treadmill energy consumption. But these should not affect your drive to exercise.
Because typically, treadmill exercises last for a short period only, about 30 minutes to 1 hour a day.
Also, treadmills are not electrical appliances that produce heat, like an air conditioner, clothes dryer, oven or fridge/freezer.
Heating appliances tend to consume more energy. And while treadmills can also generate heat, it’s not their primary function.
But how much electricity does a treadmill use exactly? And is it costly? We can understand this further through a formula. Here’s how to do it:
- Identify your treadmill’s wattage level. Usually, you can find it in the instruction manual or online. For this computation, let’s use 600 W (the average treadmill wattage) as our example.
- Multiply the wattage level by the number of treadmill workout hours per month. For example, if your workout lasts for 1 hour, six days a week, your treadmill exercise is 24 hours per month. Multiplying 600 W by 24 hours then gives you 14,400 W.
- Convert watts into kilowatts. Divide 14,400 W by 1000 to get 14.4 kilowatts per month.
- Get the average cost per kilowatt-hour in your state. Here are the electricity prices per state provided by Canstar Blue as of April 2022:
|Average Electricity Usage Rate (cents per kWh)
- Multiply your monthly kilowatt rate by the average usage rate. If you are in Victoria, your treadmill energy consumption value per month will then be:
14.4 kW x 19.77 c/kWh = 284.688 cents or $2.85 per month
There is no significant reason to skip your treadmill workout to save energy or money.
Treadmills hardly use any electricity given that we only use them for a short period. And it doesn’t cost much to do regular treadmill workouts either.
But, if you are still planning to buy a treadmill and want to cut energy costs, consider looking at manual treadmill options.
These won’t affect your electric bill and will only need batteries to power the monitor.
As for electric treadmill users, cut down energy consumption by turning off and unplugging your exercise machine when not in use. You can also use a smart plug if you like.
Also, follow your manual for proper treadmill cleaning and maintenance instructions. These can help prolong the treadmill lifespan and avoid unnecessary costs.
Lastly, pick high-quality machines with horsepower that match your exercise needs.
Start your hunt with the best treadmills from Australia!
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