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  • Save Electricity

    Easy Electricity Saving Tips

February 2018

How to save electricity for an energy efficient home and leaner energy bill.

The rising cost of power is prompting many Australians to pay closer attention to their energy consumption. The good news is that there are a number of small changes you can make almost immediately that may help with keeping electricity costs down. By adjusting your energy usage habits, you can go a long way to easing the financial pressures that come with managing a household.

Every household setup is different, so your savings may not be typical of the average Australian home. It all depends on your usage habits, the size and features of your home, and how you choose to manage your appliances.

Understanding your electricity bill

Most often, electricity retailers separate the electricity bill into two parts. You may notice 'fixed charges' and 'variable charges'. The fixed rate is usually a daily flat fee that is charged to keep you connected to the grid. All network users pay the fixed fee per day for their area, which probably goes towards administrative costs and maintaining the infrastructure.

The variable part of the electricity bill is your usage, measured in units (normally kilowatts per hour, or kWh), recorded by your home’s individual electricity meter. By being frugal with your electricity usage, you may be able to save some money on your bills.

Learn how to save energy and reduce your electricity bill.

Electricity saving tips for your household

Here is a list of electricity saving tips to help cut your electricity bill.

Behavioural changes that can save energy

Mother Nature provides us with plenty natural resources that we can use to our advantage and save energy along the way:

  1. You can choose to use natural light whenever possible. Open windows, curtains and blinds to let in natural sunlight. This may save energy costs.
  2. By layering your clothing in winter and dressing in cooler clothes in summer, you may find that you need to use your home’s heating and cooling systems less frequently. Wearing weather-appropriate clothing may therefore help save on heating and cooling costs.
  3. If you have to use heating or cooling and want to save electricity, you may consider limiting it to the rooms where you spend most of your time. Shutting the doors and curtains in the other rooms and block draughts will keep chilly breezes out during winter.
  4. Some electricity meters are set up to offer off-peak electricity. Tariffs charged during off-peak times usually between 10pm - 7am are lower than peak times. Depending on your meter set up and household, this may be a good way to save energy.

Tackle the biggest culprits to save energy

Proper home maintenance may help save a lot of energy. This is how:

  1. A hot water heater is usually the biggest energy user in a home. It can account for up to thirty percent of your bill during winter1. It may be a good idea to ensure that your water heater is Energy Star rated and if it needs to be replaced, to choose an energy-efficient model.
  2. Another major energy user is your fridge and freezer. The most energy-efficient temperature setting for your fridge is between 3° - 5°C and for your freezer, 15° - 18°C. Use your second fridge or freezer only when you actually need 2

General electricity saving tips

It may be possible to add up to decent energy savings over time if you try to cut back a little here and there on your energy consumption:

  1. Try to wait until you have a full load and choose a cold cycle on your washing machine. Most modern washers have economy cycles and by using that, you may be able to save $100 or more a year. 3
  2. Install insulation in your roof for better temperature regulation. Opt for insulation with a R-value of R3.5 or higher. 4
  3. On average, the standby power use amounts to 81.8 kWh in Australia, which can cost a couple hundred dollars a year 5. You may wish to consider installing a standby power controller, and use a power board with switches to turn individual appliances off more easily. 6

The final word

With the cost of energy rising, finding ways to save electricity is vital. There are so many things you can do to reduce your energy usage, and using the tips above will help get you started. It is really simple - the less electricity you use, the less your bill is. Once you understand how your electricity bill works, you can begin making easy, efficient changes to your home.

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