• EV tariffs
  • Apr 26, 2022

Until recently, people were only ever likely to be under the energy price cap cover of a ‘standard’ tariff if they’d never switched, or at least hadn’t got round to switching after a fixed tariff had ended. Traditionally, these tariffs were £100s/year more than the very cheapest tariffs on the market.

Fast forward to 2022, and an energy market in crisis has changed all that. Wholesale prices (the prices energy firms pay) are at unprecedented highs, so there have been no fixed deals cheaper than your supplier’s current price-capped, SVT or ‘default’ tariffs. That’s about to change as April brings a new higher price cap.

Should EV drivers consider staying under the price cap?

EV drivers, many of whom are coming off fixed EV-friendly ‘time-of-use’ tariffs with cheaper overnight rates in the coming months, will be wondering what their best course of action will be. EV tariffs, except traditional Economy 7 tariffs, aren’t covered by a price cap. Renewing your tariff will cost you more, but maybe not more than staying on a default tariff. If you can shift enough of your use into the off-peak, you may find the higher day rates of an EV tariff are made up for by off-peak rates that have stayed (relatively) low.

With the April price cap, and rises expected in October, a fixed EV tariff looks like the best option for many EV households.

How is the energy price cap calculated?

The price cap sets a cap on the total bill for each level of consumption. It doesn’t set a cap on the unit rate, but it is easy enough to work backwards to pull out the figure for any level of energy consumption.

Best tariff for an average EV household?

We ran the numbers for two homes, both with an EV charged at home most of the time. First, showing the price cap then comparing how the bill looks on an EV tariff for three patterns: 

  1. Using all their energy during the expensive peak, but charging overnight.
  2. Charging overnight and using 25% of house electricity off-peak.
  3. Shifting half their energy use into the off-peak window, and charging overnight too*.

* For a household using 10kWh per day, that’s shifting over 5kWh each day: For example. a washing machine cycle uses between 1-3kWh, a dishwasher may be around 1.8kWh, an immersion heater timed to heat water overnight uses 3kWh in an hour

House #1: The large detached household, typically consuming around 4,000 kWh per year just in the home and driving the average 7,400 miles per year (all charged overnight).


Flat rate: 28p
Standing charge: 49p/day

Total bill: £1,816.85

GoElectric 35 (Feb ’24)


Day: 39.92p Night: 4.5p
Standing charge: 36.6p/day
Off-peak: 12am – 5am.

1. Charging only off-peak bill: £1,819 
2. + 25% of home use shifted: £1,465
3. + 50% of home use shifted: £1,111


Octopus EV tariff – Go (updated March 2022)


Day: 35.04p Night: 7.5p
Standing charge: 47.88p/day
4 hours/night off-peak, 12:30-04.30

1. Charging only off-peak bill: £1,724
2. + 25% of home use shifted: £1,449
3. + 50% of home use shifted: £1,174

House #2: Smaller household, typically consuming around 3,100 kWh per year in the home and commuting 10,000 miles in an EV. The total electricity use is the same as House #1.


Flat rate: 28p
Standing charge: 49p/day

Total bill: £1,816

GoElectric 35 (Feb ’24)


Day: 39.92p Night: 4.5p
Standing charge: 36.6p/day
Off-peak: 12am – 5am.

1. Charging only off-peak bill: £1,500
2. + 25% of home use shifted: £1,139
3. + 50% of home use shifted: £952


Octopus EV tariff – Go (updated March 2022)


Day: 35.04p Night: 7.5p
Standing charge: 47.88p/day
4 hours/night off-peak, 12:30-04.30

1. Charging only off-peak bill: £1,477
2. + 25% of home use shifted: £1,264
3. + 50% of home use shifted: £1,051

For an average household, an EV tariff is clearly the better deal. Particularly if your house can shift quite a bit into the off-peak hours. At lower EV mileages, the price cap tariff may fare better. If you use less in the  home and more in your car the EV tariff tends to save you more. Choosing between EV tariffs based on your own daily consumption pattern is more important than ever.

How the price cap varies by region

The cap also has different levels of standing charge and unit price for each region.

From 1st April 2022, a price capped electricity bill will look as follows:

April 22 Price Cap Annual standing charge Standing charge/day Cap on what a household pays (for 3100kWh) Price per kWh
North West £166.49 £0.46 £1,037.86 £0.28
Northern £190.93 £0.52 £1,033.38 £0.27
Yorkshire £189.51 £0.52 £1,040.28 £0.27
Northern Scotland £195.10 £0.53 £1,062.00 £0.28
Southern £170.70 £0.47 £1,055.00 £0.29
Southern Scotland £193.61 £0.53 £1,059.00 £0.28
N Wales £186.04 £0.51 £1,106.00 £0.30
London £129.47 £0.35 £1,051.00 £0.30
South East £164.36 £0.45 £1,081.00 £0.30
Eastern £150.64 £0.41 £1,059.00 £0.29
East Midlands £175.67 £0.48 £1,034.00 £0.28
Midlands £188.05 £0.52 £1,054.00 £0.28
Southern Western £200.86 £0.55 £1,084.00 £0.28
South Wales £188.13 £0.52 £1,067.00 £0.28
UK average £177.83 £0.49 £1,058.82 £0.28

The rates are different if you have an Economy 7 meter, or have a credit or prepayment account. There are also price cap rates for gas.

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