10 ways to save on your energy bill
Saving money on your electricity bill doesn't mean you have to spend big on a new water tank or improved insulation. Start saving right now with these ten easy tips.
1. Use energy-saving appliances
Appliances are responsible for over 30 per cent1 of your home's energy consumption, so you can shave a lot off your monthly bills by using appliances designed to help you save electricity.
Want to know how power-efficient your appliances really are? Check out their Energy Rating.
2. Use a fan
Ever noticed how your electricity bill soars come summertime? Cooling can result in a 24 per cent increase in your power bill2, but there's another way to handle the heat without hurting your hip pocket: try a fan. By placing pedestal fans at strategic points throughout your home, and near the bed to keep you cool while you sleep, you'll be able to get through summer without incurring extra electricity expenses.
3. Take advantage of time-of-use pricing
Electricity costs more during peak usage times, so you can lower your bills by using high-energy appliances such as your dryer, dishwasher and washing machine outside of these hours. Use appliances before 2pm and after 8pm on weekdays or between 3pm and 8pm on weekends and you'll be able to limit your energy use while also taking advantage of lower prices3.
4. Wash clothes with cold water
Your hot water heater is a major offender when it comes to household energy use4, but it's possible to mitigate the damage to your electricity bill by washing clothes with cold water whenever you can. Cold-water washes are perfect for dark and bright colours so sort your washing properly to squeeze as much money saving out of each load as possible5.
5. Help your heater
When the weather gets chilly, you can keep things warm and cosy without overusing your heater. Wear warm clothes and keep heat inside by drawing the curtains and blinds in the late afternoon as the sun starts to dip. Close doors to section off specific areas of your home that require warming, such as your bedroom and living room.
6. Switch to efficient lighting
Lighting accounts for between 8 and 15 per cent of your household's electricity usage6, but you can halve this by switching to an energy-efficient lighting option. Audit the light sources in your home to see where improvements can be made – whether you use dimmers, downlights or something else entirely. Remember: while installing entirely new lights will require an electrician, you can DIY by simply switching the type of light bulb you use.
7. Unplug everything
You may think this is overkill, but by unplugging all your gadgets when they're not in use you can avoid paying too much come bill time. Televisions, phone chargers, sound systems, computers, modems and all your other non-essential appliances still draw power when they're plugged into an active socket, so by living life unplugged you can help yourself and the environment.
8. Defrost food in the fridge
Your microwave is a thirsty little machine, so it's important to only use it when it's efficient to do so – and defrosting dinner isn't one of those times! Don't move meals immediately from the freezer to the microwave. Plan ahead instead and give yourself time to defrost your food in the fridge.
9. Use your dishwasher properly
Get the most energy savings out of your dishwasher by stacking plates and bowls correctly – this means facing inwards towards the centre. Scraping off excess food ensures your dishwasher cleans everything correctly, while waiting until it's full means you're saving money by making the most of each load.
10. Air-dry everything
Although dryers and dishwashers make it easy to dry clothes, cookware, crockery and cutlery in the blink of an eye, this can increase the monthly cost of your electricity bill. Air-drying your essentials may take longer, but it's a smart way to ensure your costs stay down. By hanging your clothes on the line in the morning they should be dry by the afternoon, and if you're drying clothes inside increase airflow by opening nearby windows.
Want to learn more about smart ways to save on your energy bill? Check out Your Energy Savings for in-depth information.