An expensive electricity bill can come as a nasty shock and be detrimental to your hard-earned savings. To avoid unnecessary bills, it is important to analyse your energy consumption habits to see where you can make those savings back. In this article we outline some of the most common causes for high energy bills and solutions based on the average energy consumption of Australian households.
Energy consumption in Australia
In a study conducted by the Department of Environment and Energy website (DEWHA), around 20% of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions come from Australian households. Data presented by DEWHA in 2008 outlines the top consumption habits in households:
- 40% heating and cooling
- 21% water heating
- 33% home appliances
- 6% lighting
Common causes for high electricity bills and how to solve them
Ducted air conditioning
Cooling is one of the greatest factors to an increase in household energy consumption. Costs are highest with ducted air conditioning because of its high input power rating.
- Use sufficient insulation to keep the heat out of your property and lower your demand for air conditioning
- Set the thermostat of your air conditioning higher in Summer and lower in Winter—a reduction on your energy bill is made for every 1˚C adjustment you make on your air conditioner
- Consider replacing ducted air conditioning with a more energy efficient split system air conditioner
Hot water systems
The hot water system is the 2nd largest segment of household energy use in Australia (21%). Energy bills can increase from water leaks, inefficient water fixtures and irresponsible use
- Inspect water systems for leaks regularly
- Reduce hot water consumption by using taps and shower head fixtures
- Ensure pipework insulation is working, especially near the tank in order to reduce set-point temperature
- If you have a pool, use pool covers to retain heat and prevent evaporation – this can lead to energy losses
An abundance of electrical or gas appliances can increase your energy bills. Freezers, televisions and ovens are some of the biggest energy consumers.
- Select appliances with a good energy efficiency rating to save money and reduce your carbon footprint
- Maintain your appliances to ensure they are running efficiently—a fridge with a leaky seal or a malfunctioning clothes washer will consume more energy
The average household will spend 8-15% of their electricity budget on lighting. Lighting consumption is greater when using old lightbulbs.
- Replace old incandescent, halogen, and fluorescent bulbs with LEDs, which promise up to 89% greater energy savings
- Responsible use of lights can also lead to huge savings, so turn off lights when not in use
- Take advantage of natural light with big windows
- Only install lights in areas that need lighting, or spaces that will provide the most efficient light exposure
ALSO READ: Choosing Energy Company
If your electricity meter is difficult to access by the service provider, your bill will be estimated by your energy company, which may also explain the increase in price. To find the right energy plan for your home, you should compare a range of providers. Electricity Wizard can assist you in finding a superior electricity provider in your area. Contact us now to find out more.