How To Reduce Your Electricity Bill

Find out some of the many ways you can reduce your electricity bill here with Savvy. 

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, updated on July 27th, 2023       

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Saving money

Reducing your electricity bill is not only beneficial to your wallet, but also to the environment. By making a few simple changes and adopting energy-efficient habits, you can significantly lower your electricity usage and save money. Savvy’s guide will provide you with practical tips and strategies on how to reduce your electricity bill. From making smart appliance choices to implementing energy-saving measures, you'll discover effective ways to minimise your energy consumption and maximise your savings. Start implementing these tips today and watch your electricity bills fall!  

How can I reduce my electricity bills?

There are several strategies and techniques you can use to reduce your electricity consumption and so have smaller electricity bills. Broadly, these techniques involve: 

  1. Adopting energy-saving habits in your home to reduce your electricity consumption
  2. Using less power by switching to energy-efficient appliances
  3. Making your home more energy efficient, which will decrease your power consumption in the long run
  4. Make use of time of use and controlled load tariffs to reduce your electricity bills

We will look at each of these areas in detail to see how savings can be made to your overall energy plan

1. Adopt energy-saving habits in your home

Follow these tips to start adopting energy-saving habits in your home: 

  • Turn off lights in unoccupied rooms
  • Unplug all electronic devices when they are not in use
  • Use a power strip to easily turn off multiple devices at once when you go to bed
  • Only run your dishwasher and washing machine when they are full, and use the delay function to run them at night when power is cheaper
  • Reduce the number of washing cycles per week by only washing clothes and dishes that are really dirty
  • Wash clothes in cold water, and use natural air and sunlight for drying, rather than a power-hungry tumble dryer
  • Adjust the thermostat settings on your hot water heater to reduce the heat setting by two to four degrees
  • Increase the temperature on your air conditioning thermostat by just two to four degrees to achieve big savings and minimise your power usage
  • Close all doors and curtains to optimise insulation and maintain a constant indoor temperature
  • Change your ceiling fan settings from summer to winter mode at the change of season, to circulate warm air downward in winter

2. Switch to energy-efficient appliances and save up to 30%

The Energy Star Rating System in Australia is a voluntary program that helps people choose energy-efficient appliances. The program is administered by the Australian Government, and assigns a star rating to appliances based on their energy efficiency. You will find these stars on a large sticker on the front of all electrical appliances for easy comparison. The more stars an appliance has, the more energy-efficient it is, indicating that it consumes less electricity to perform the same function.  

For example, a fridge with a 4.5-star rating will use considerably less electricity than a 2.5-star fridge. Both appliances will keep your food cool at a certain temperature, but the more energy-efficient one will do this using less electricity. Over time, this can add up to noticeable savings on your power bill. 

The exact amount of savings depends on various factors, including the type of appliance, its energy efficiency rating, and the frequency and duration of its usage. Generally, an energy-efficient appliance can save up to 30% or more in energy consumption compared to a lower-rated appliance. Energy-efficient appliances not only save money, but also contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and promoting environmental sustainability. 

You can make a conscious decision to gradually replace all your household appliances with more energy-efficient ones over a period of time. You could set yourself a goal of replacing one major appliance a year. If you do this, over the space of five to ten years or so you will have transitioned to a more energy-efficient household.   

3. Make your home more energy efficient

There’s many ways to make your home more energy efficient. Here are some suggestions to get your started:  

  • Block draughts under doors and windows to maintain a more constant indoor temperature
  • Check your roof insulation to prevent heat loss in winter. If your home has insufficient roof insulation, invest in high quality insulation batts and have them installed in your attic space
  • Replace all your incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient LED bulbs for energy savings of 70% or more
  • Don’t forget your outside spotlights and lighting around your BBQ or swimming pool area – make sure you replace these lights too
  • Consider planting shade trees to block the sun from heating up your home too much
  • Replace or redesign areas of concrete that absorb sunlight and radiate heat into your home living space
  • Remember that verandas or screens around the main walls of your home keep the sun out and the warm in during winter
  • Get a solar power energy system installed on your roof to use clean energy from the sun to generate electricity and/or to heat your water

Energy efficiency for swimming pools 

Here’s more ways to keep your energy bills low by looking at your swimming pool power usage:  

  • Replace your traditional pool water heater with a more energy-efficient option like a heat pump or solar water heater to reduce energy consumption. You can cut your pool heating bills by up to 50% by getting a more energy-efficient water heating system
  • Use a high-quality pool cover: a quality pool cover helps to retain heat and prevents water evaporation, reducing the need for heating and water top-ups
  • Adjust your pump runtime: reduce the runtime of your pool pump to the minimum required for proper filtration and circulation. Running it for shorter periods will save energy
  • Upgrade to a variable speed pump: variable speed pumps allow you to adjust the pump's speed to match your pool's needs, resulting in significant energy savings compared to single-speed pumps
  • Install energy-efficient lighting: consider upgrading to energy-efficient pool lighting such as LED pool lights and spotlights
  • Use pool timers: install timers for pool equipment, such as pumps and lights, to automate their operation and avoid unnecessary energy usage
  • Monitor the water temperature: set your pool's temperature to a comfortable but energy-efficient level. Lowering the temperature by just a few degrees can result in significant energy savings
  • Maintain proper water chemistry: regularly check and maintain your pool's water chemistry to prevent issues that can lead to increased energy consumption, such as clogged filters or excessive chemical use

4. Make use of time-of-use and controlled load tariffs

Time-of-use tariffs and controlled load tariffs are two retail electricity pricing structures that can help reduce the cost of your electricity bill. They do this by offering lower rates for energy use depending on the time of day, or the specific appliances connected to them. 

Time-of-use (TOU) tariffs : 

TOU tariffs divide the day into different periods, such as peak (high demand), off-peak (low demand), and shoulder (transitional) periods. Each period has its own electricity rate, with higher rates being charged when demand is at its maximum level. 

Off-peak hours typically occur during the night, at weekends and public holidays when overall electricity demand is lower. Taking advantage of these lower rates by shifting energy-intensive activities to off-peak electricity hours can result in significant savings. 

Peak hours come with higher rates. These are usually during the later part of the day and early evening, when electricity demand is highest. By reducing your energy consumption or avoiding energy-intensive tasks during peak hours, you can avoid higher charges. 

Shoulder periods are the transition times between peak and off-peak hours, and they often offer rates in between the two. It's important to be aware of these rates and adjust your energy consumption accordingly. 

Controlled load tariffs: 

Controlled load tariffs involve setting up dedicated circuits for appliances like hot water systems, pool pumps, or underfloor heating. These power-hungry appliances have separate metering from the rest of the household, and attract reduced electricity rates because they are only operated during off-peak periods. 

The availability of electricity to the appliances on controlled load circuits is limited to specific hours, usually during off-peak periods. This encourages the use of these appliances when electricity rates are lower. 

By utilising time-of-use and controlled load tariffs effectively, you can shift your energy use to off-peak periods when rates are lower, reducing the overall cost of your electricity bill. You can compare electricity plans right here with Savvy to find one that fits in with your household energy use pattern. By switching plans to one that offers a TOU tariff or a controlled load tariff, you can reduce your power bills and help the environment at the same time. 

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Disclaimer:

Savvy is partnered with Econnex Comparison (CIMET Sales Pty Ltd, ABN 72 620 395 726) to provide readers with a variety of energy plans to compare. We do not compare all retailers in the market, or all plans offered by all retailers. Savvy earns a commission from Econnex each time a customer buys an energy plan via our website. We don’t arrange for products to be purchased directly, as all purchases are conducted via Econnex.

Any advice presented above is general in nature and doesn’t consider your personal or business objectives, needs or finances. It’s always important to consider whether advice is suitable for you before purchasing an energy plan. For further information on the variety of energy plans compared by Econnex, or how their business works, you can visit their website.