Our 17 Tips For Saving Energy Around The House
Looking to save on your next electricity bill? Reducing your home’s energy isn’t just great for your hip pocket, but it’s a great way to reduce your environmental impact.
At O’Brien Electrical Castle Hill, we’ve put together some of the best tips to help you save electricity in your home and keep your energy costs down.
According to energysaver.nsw.gov.au, putting a number of these changes in action could potentially save you up to $470 every year.
Depending on the size of your household and your current energy consumption, making even just a few of these changes could result in substantial impacts.
- Take shorter showers
- Switch off appliances at the wall
- Check the energy rating of new appliances
- Use the most energy-efficient appliance settings
- Install solar power for your home
- Track your electricity usage with power monitoring
- Use smart power boards
- Use ceiling fans instead of air conditioning
- Zone your heating and cooling
- Set your thermostat to the most energy-efficient setting
- Upgrade to energy-efficient lighting
- Switch off lights when leaving a room
- Use timers or sensor lighting for outdoor areas
- Wash clothes in cold water
- Only use the dishwasher when full
- Make sure your fridge seals are working
- Set your fridge thermostat properly and keep it filled
Take shorter showers
On average, electric hot water heaters account for around 25% of a household’s energy use. By cutting down on your showers, even by just little, can add up over the year in save electricity usage.
Reducing your shower by even just 3 minutes can save an average home over $105 per annum.
Switch off appliances at the wall
When left switched on at the wall, your appliances can account for up to 3% of your overall energy bill. Even in standby mode, appliances like washing machines, routers, and speaker docks still consume considerable energy.
In 2016 Choice found you can be paying more than $100 per year in unnecessary power.
Check the energy rating of new appliances
Looking at installing electrical appliances? New washing machine? Or maybe a fridge? Whatever it is, compare the energy star-ratings. The more stars, the more you’ll save on running costs.
Energy-efficient technology is constantly improving from one year to the next, and ratings change so keep this in mind if you’re looking at second-hand appliances. For a helpful guide on comparing star ratings, follow this energy rating guide.
Use the most energy-efficient appliance settings
As well as choosing the best-rated appliances, make sure you’re making the most of their eco-friendly settings. Many dishwashers and washing machines now have energy-saving options to further reduce their power consumption,
Install solar power for your home
While it is a major investment, Installing solar power for your home can save you substantially in the long run. According to energysaver.nsw.gov.au, the average Sydney household can save up to $900 a year by installing a 4-kilowatt solar system on their roof. Even investing in a solar hot water system can result in a large reduction in your home’s energy usage.
Track your electricity usage with power monitoring
When you’re trying to save on electricity, there’s nothing better than knowing exactly how much power you’re using. With a home energy monitor, you can keep an eagle eye on your electricity consumption and make more informed decisions about where to maximise savings.
If your home has a smart meter, setting up an online energy monitor is relatively quick and easy. Otherwise, there’s a range of different energy monitors for homes with traditional meters.
Use smart powerboards
If turning off all your devices at the wall seems tedious, invest in a smart powerboard. Smart power boards function similarly to regular power strips, with the exception that they can detect when a device is in standby mode and cut electricity to it.
By automatically managing the flow of electricity, smart power boards make it easier to reduce power consumption from idle devices. They are particularly useful when it comes to areas with many devices connected together like entertainment systems.
Use ceiling fans instead of air conditioning
Ceilings fans use substantially less energy than air conditioning does. They are by far the cheapest cooling option in summer, but they can also be used to move hot air more efficiently around your home in winter too.
Surprisingly, many ceiling fans have both summer and winter settings. Check to make sure yours is set correctly to make the most of its functionality.
Zone your heating and cooling
When you’re at home, you don’t need to use air conditioning or heating in every room or area. By “zoning” your heating and cooling, you can significantly reduce your power bill from only heating or cooling occupied areas.
If you don’t have a ducted system, keep windows and doors closed where your heater or air conditioning operates. However, be mindful of ventilation needs for unflued gas appliances.
Set your thermostat to the most energy-efficient setting
During summer, set your air conditioning between 22°C and 24°C and your heating between 18°C and 23°C during winter. It’s estimated that every degree warmer you put your air conditioning, you save 10% on running costs.
To really cut costs, consider purchasing a thermostat with a timer for even more control.
Upgrade to energy-efficient lighting
LED lights use up to 75% less electricity than older halogen bulbs and last up to 25 times longer too. To make a big dent in your power bill, upgrade to LED lighting.
Plus, with a dimmer switch also installed, you can net even more savings by turning down the brightness. In NSW, you may even be eligible for a discount on your LED installations under a lighting upgrade offer for households program.
Switch off lights when leaving a room
Speaking of lights, switch off any lighting when you’re not actually in the room. This will not only save on energy costs but prolong the life of your bulbs too.
Use timers or sensor lighting for outdoor areas
For your outdoor lighting, use motion sensor lights or a timer system to keep lights on only when they’re needed. Sensor and outdoor lights are a popular security option, but they don’t need to be on 24/7.
Wash clothes in cold water
Washing your clothes with hot water can run up high energy costs. Instead, switch to a cold wash unless your clothes are particularly dirty.
Coldwater washes use a fraction of the electricity of all warm loads, especially if your washing machine has to heat the water itself. A cold wash is usually enough for lightly soiled clothing and better for bright coloured items.
Only use the dishwasher when full
A great way to save both electricity and water is to only use your dishwasher when it’s full. On average, the average usage cost of a load is between 13.6c and 25.1c, but this will vary depending on the size of your dishwasher and its energy rating.
Make sure your fridge seals are working
Your fridge can account for up to 13% of power bills in Australian households, so it’s vital to make sure yours is running as efficiently as possible.
One easy way to keep fridge running costs low is to check your fridge and freezer seals are working. Fridge seals help keep the cold air in and the warm air out. Keep an eye out for signs of deteriorating seals like splits and cracks, discolouration, and a fridge door that keeps popping open.
Set your fridge thermostat properly and keep it filled
It’s recommended setting your fridge to 3°C and your freezer between -15°C and -18°C and keeping it well stocked without overfilling it. A well-stocked fridge will prevent excess cold air from leaving when you open your fridge door and setting the thermostat any lower will only use more energy cooling your items than necessary.
Need Some Help Reducing Your Energy Bill?
Every home is different and your electricity bill is made up of a number of different costs. We hope this guide has given you some helpful insights into how you can take action to reduce your energy bill and start saving today.
If you’d like more information on how to save power in your home, get in touch with our friendly expert Hills District electricians. We can help you with everything from new LED upgrades to installing new energy-efficient appliances.
For an energy assessment of your home, book a call-out with one of our friendly electricians today. Request a quote online or call us at your convenience.