Help reduce your household bills
Interested in saving energy at home? These handy energy saving tips and ideas can help to lower your household bills.
Heating and cooling
Break out the ugg boots and dress warmly in winter instead of making your heater do all the work. Unless you’re using the whole house, there’s no need to heat or cool every room. Close internal doors (and use snakes or towels
to block draughts under doors) so you’re only regulating the temperature in the spaces you’re using.
Watch those windows! In some climates, they can allow up to 40% of your heating or cooling energy to escape. Use double-glazing, window tints, blinds and curtains to help prevent hot or cool air from sneaking out the window.
Heating water uses lots of energy, so using less hot water can help with saving energy and reducing your bills.
Use a timer and take shorter showers. Or turn on the radio in the bathroom (shower-karaoke anyone?) and only shower for one song.
If you’re buying new showerheads, taps, washing machines or dishwashers, consider the water efficiency rating label – this can help keep (energy hungry) hot water use to a minimum.
Insulate any exposed hot water pipes outside your house to keep the heat in.
Your fridge runs all day, every day, making it one of the more expensive appliances to run. So make sure the door seal is tight and has no gaps.
A well-ventilated fridge uses less energy, so don’t butt it up against the wall. Make sure there’s around 5cm between the condenser and the wall, and that there’s free space above your fridge.
Wait until your dishwasher is full before turning it on.
Only fill the kettle with the level of the water you’ll use right away. Otherwise you’ll waste energy heating it, just to let it go cold.
Wash clothes in cold water instead of hot. You’ve probably heard this tip before…but did you know that heating the water accounts for almost all the energy a washing machine uses?
Let the sun dry your clothes on the line or clothes airer instead of switching on the dryer. You can save energy and enjoy crumple-free clothes. Win-win.
If you need to use a clothes dryer, make sure you clean out the lint filter after each use.
Around the house
Not using that appliance? Turn it off at the switch. ‘Standby’ mode can chew through a lot of electricity – up to 10% of energy use in some households. The hungrier culprits tend to be TVs, DVD players, ovens, phone chargers
Use energy efficient lights where you can.
Buying a new appliance? Look out for the energy-rating label - the more stars it gets the more energy efficient it will be.
Once a month have a digital detox night. Switch off the TV, computers and mobile phones. Not only will you be saving electricity, you can spend some quality time with your family. Or finally get around to the reading, drawing, knitting,
meditating, jigsaw-puzzling, pet-patting, board-gaming or star-gazing you’ve been meaning to do.
Want more tips?
The Victorian Energy Saver website has tips plus links to
discounted energy saving products.
Sustainability Victoria also offers all kinds of advice on saving energy.
The CSIRO website has more information on saving energy in your home.