Saving money on your power bills can be achieved by using power in your home or business more efficiently. The following tips are designed to help you work out where you may be using more power than necessary.
The amount of power an appliance uses is determined by its wattage. 1000 watts equals one kilowatt. When you run a 1000 watt appliance for an hour you use one unit (kilowatt hour) of electricity. One unit of electricity will run a 2000 watt heater for 30 minutes or a 100 watt lightbulb for 10 hours.
- When purchasing a new refrigerator or freezer look at the Energy Rating Label. More stars indicate the appliance is more efficient. The lower the energy consumption figures, the lower the running cost.
- Defrost freezers regularly – the more ice builds up, the harder the unit has to work to freeze effectively.
- Provide adequate circulation around your refrigerator and if possible locate it in the coolest part of the room.
- Use your microwave oven or bench top oven when possible. A microwave oven uses less energy to heat one cup of water than an electric jug.
- When using the oven try to cook more than one thing at a time to maximise the value of your power usage, especially if you have a fanbake oven.
- When using your cooktop, match the size of the pot to the size of the element.
- Turn off your computer when not in use. Other electronic equipment should be turned off at the appliance or at the wall rather than using the remote. This saves ‘standby power’.
40% of an average household's power use is for hot water. If the hot water at the kitchen sink is too hot for washing up, turn the thermostat down at the hot water cylinder but ensure the temperature is at least at the minimum recommended temperature of 55 degrees C.
- Fix dripping taps. A hot water tap dripping at the rate of one drip per second wastes approximately 28 litres of hot water per day.
- A shower generally uses less water than a bath. Test how much water your shower uses by placing a bucket under it. If a 10 litre bucket fills up in less than a minute for mains pressure hot water or less than 2 minutes for low pressure you may like to consider replacing the shower head with a more energy efficient one.
- Wait until the dishwasher is full before turning it on.
- Use cold washes in your washing machine as much as possible and dry clothes outside or in a carport. If you have to use a clothes drier use it to air rather than to dry clothes straight from the washing machine. Clean the lint filter of your drier frequently.
- Keep your light fixtures clean to maximise the light output.
- In areas where lights are on for a length of time consider using energy efficient light bulbs.
- Insulation will considerably reduce heat loss and your energy needs. Where possible insulate ceilings, walls and floors.
- Cover windows with full length curtains to reduce heat loss at night.
- If you work in an office with air conditioning ensure it’s on a timer so it’s off at nights and weekends.