If you're in the market for a new television for yourself (or if you're looking for one as a gift), make sure you buy one that doesn't boost the burden of your power bill. Environmental Protection Agency's EnergyStar program has recently modified the way it measures the energy consumption in TVs, taking into account not just their standby power consumption but the much greater amounts your set eats up while you're watching it.

The following models are the most energy-efficient TVs on the market today (as of November 2010). All models meet the power use requirements in the future version of EnergyStar (Version 5.1) that goes into effect in May 2012. Models not on this list may use up to two or three times more power to operate.

Some things to consider:

  1. Only buy as big a TV as you really need. In general, bigger TVs use more energy and cost more to operate than smaller ones.
  2. When setting up your new TV, be sure to pick the “home” mode setting. This setting may cut your power use by up to 25 percent compared to other settings such as “vivid” or “retail” which are unnecessarily bright for most users.
Annual energy use values are based on TV use of five hours per day. Estimated 10-year energy costs are based on the average national residential electricity costs in 2010 ($0.1156/kWh). The screen sizes shown are the TV’s reported diagonal measurement.

To find the screen size you are looking for click on one of the dimensions below:

• Less than 20 inches
• 20-29 inches
• 30-39 inches
•  40-49 inches
•  50-59 inches 
• 60 inches and above

This article was reprinted with permission from 
Energy-efficient TVs: The NRDC listings
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