Energy Saving Tips
Being energy conscious not only has a positive effect on your hip pocket but is a simple way to reduce your personal impact on climate change.
Heating and cooling your home
- Don't overheat or overcool your home. Keep your winter thermostat set between 18°c and 21°c and in summer 25°C to 27°C. Even a change of 1°c can increase your energy consumption and greenhouse pollution by 10%. Remember to turn it off when you leave the house.
- On sunny winter days make sure the curtains on all windows facing north are open to take advantage of sunshine and turn off heating and shut doors to rooms not being used. Sealing gaps on windows and under doors will prevent drafts. Make sure all curtains are closed and you turn off your heating at night as your house will retain its warmth for several hours.
- Protect your house from the summer sun with blinds, sail shades and trees and close the curtains or blinds on all north facing windows.
- Adequate insulation can give your heating and cooling a big boost. If your home is not already insulated, in most cases it can easily be installed.
- Clean air conditioner filters regularly so that air can pass through quickly and easily.
Electric hot water systems are still the norm for most Australian homes and a large amount of your energy bill will be for hot water. They are expensive to run and the average hot water system can produce up to 4 tonnes of greenhouse gas annually. Making a few small changes can mean a big difference to your electricity bill and your impact on the environment.
- Adjusting the temperature on your thermostat by as little as 5°C, can reduce energy consumption by between 3% and 5%. (It's recommended you don't set the thermostat lower than 60°C).
- Switch the system off if you go away – all the time it's on, you're heating up the outside.
- Wash in cold water and save around 3 kilograms of greenhouse gas(compared to a hot wash).
- Try and keep your showers to 3 minutes and save both energy and water.
- Install a water-saver showerhead to cut hot water usage while maintaining water pressure.
- Don't leave taps dripping – hot or cold. Just 60 drops of water a minute will add up to 9,000 litres of water down the drain in a year.
Switch off stand-by power
Standby power contributes to around 11% of Australian residential electricity use and often serves no purpose. Switching the power off at the switch when not in use can reduce greenhouse gas by up to 85 kilograms or around $100 annually for the average home.
Appliance Star Ratings
When buying new appliances, check out the star or energy rating of the selected appliance. This rating lets you know what appliances can minimise your power usage and help you save money. The more stars on the label, the more energy efficient the appliance. The number on the label tells you how many kilowatt-hours (kWh) the appliance will use annually in accordance with Australian Standards.
Statistics sourced from the Australian Conservation Foundation.