If you’re wondering how to save energy this summer, we’ve put together a range of tips.
Energy saving tips for cooling your home
Heating and cooling accounts for around 40% of energy use in the average Australian home, so it’s not surprising that when the temperature goes up, the energy bill goes up too. However, there are still ways you can efficiently cool your home in summer without breaking the bank.
- If you can, try to use fans to cool yourself down instead of the aircon.
- When you do need the aircon, the Australian Government’s Your Home recommends setting the thermostat to 25°C to 27°C, saying each degree of extra cooling in summer increases energy consumption by about 5-10%.
- If your cooling system doesn’t allow you to turn off certain areas or rooms, close the doors to those areas. You’ll use less energy if you only cool the rooms you’re using.
- Clean the filter of your cooling system regularly to help with its efficiency.
- Check for gaps around windows and doors. If there are any, use a draught stopper to prevent warm air coming in and cool air getting out.
- Keep your curtains or blinds closed during the day to stop heat and direct sunlight from coming in. External blinds, canvas awnings or roller shutters will also help keep your home cooler.
- When the outside temperature drops, open windows and doors to let cool air in and create natural breezes inside your home.
- Looking long term, you could invest in a solar heating and cooling unit. You could also look at updating the insulation in your home.
Reducing your water usage
Here are some energy saving tips you can do around your home to reduce water consumption:
- Take shorter showers and consider replacing an old shower head with a water-saving shower head.
- Wash your clothes in cold water and only when you have a full load of washing. Check if your washing machine has an eco-cycle which uses less energy.
- Instead of using a dryer, dry your clothes outside in the sun, or use a fan to help them dry indoors.
- Only run your dishwasher when it’s full and put it on an eco-cycle.
- Consider investing in a solar hot water system.
Power saving tips
If you’re wondering how to save electricity, there are several things you can do at home to make a difference both financially and environmentally.
- Use LED light bulbs, which can be used in most existing light fittings. They use around 75% less electricity, last significantly longer, and are better value for money.
- Remember to switch off your lights and appliances when you’re not using them. Turning things off at the wall can save more power than leaving them on standby.
- Is your fridge set to the right temperature? As it’s on 24/7, it’s a costly appliance to run. Your Home recommends your fridge should be set between 3°C and 4°C, and your freezer should be between -15°C and -18°C. If you have a second fridge or freezer, only turn it on when needed. While you’re looking at your fridge, check the seals in case any need replacing.
- While you’re in the kitchen, remember microwaves use less energy than an electric oven.
- When using a stove, keep lids on pots to reduce cooking time.
- When you’re buying appliances, try to opt for more energy efficient ones by looking at the energy rating. While they may cost a little more to buy, using less energy will be beneficial in the long run.
- Consider solar lights, programmable timers and sensors for lighting garden and outdoor areas.
Review your energy providers
It’s a good idea to shop around and compare energy offers, to make sure you’re getting the best deal for you. Energy Made Easy is a free, independent, government service that lets you compare different energy providers and find the best option for your household.
You can use Energy Made Easy if you live in New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory.