Maybe you’re saving up to install a solar power system or your existing system doesn’t cater for all of your power needs just yet. Either way, you’re probably looking for ways to reduce your annual power bills.
Here’s nine ways in which you can do just that without even breaking a sweat.
Use energy-efficient lighting
If you’re still using incandescent or halogen lightbulbs, then it’s time to swap them out for LEDs as these bulbs use only around 8% of the power that older bulbs do and they also last for years.
Act smart with the thermostat
It can be expensive to have your indoors temperature “just so”, so you’ll need to compromise. During winter, turn the heating down to 18C or 19C and during summer, set the aircon to 25C or 26C. It’s tempting to have 21C all year round, but every degree above 20C in winter and below 25C in summer adds 10% to the costs.
Use cooler water for laundry
We all know that hotter water works best, but it’s not always essential for every wash. Heating water in your washing machine sucks up power, so if you’re just freshening up day-to-day items, stick to 30C for every other wash and use 60C instead of 90C for boil-washes.
Stand down your standby
You can waste up to $100 a year in electricity by leaving appliances on standby. Get into the habit of unplugging them or turning them off at the wall. Things like TVs and phone chargers are the worst culprits, so be vigilant.
Keep doors and curtains closed
Whether it’s your heating or your aircon, if you’re introducing excessive air into the space you’re trying to heat or cool, your appliance will have to work harder. If you’ve settled into one room for the evening, reduce draughts as much as possible.
Add more insulation
In a similar manner to keeping out draughts, adding more insulation to your home means your interiors maintain a more stable temperature. Insulation keeps your spaces cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter, which reduces the demands on your aircon and heating.
Monitor your usage
Using an energy monitor helps you to find out when you’re using the most electricity and whether you can do anything about it. If you’re already on a smart meter you should be able to do this already, but if not, you can install a device.
Make sure your appliances aren’t working too hard
If your fridge is a degree too cold than it really needs to be, or your TV is a bit too bright, you’ll be using more energy than you need to. Look out for any eco settings on appliances like dishwashers and try not to use your tumble drier with every wash.
Switch electricity providers
You might be able to shave a few dollars off your annual power bills by swapping to another provider. It also pays to call up your current company and ask if they’ll reduce your bills in order to retain you.