Energy savings advice

Find out how you could lower your energy bills with handy tips and government energy efficiency schemes

Energy saving tips

Help save on your home or small business energy costs with these power saving tips.

When heating or cooling your home or small business, 1-degree difference can have an impact on your power bill. By following a few simple tips and changing some basic behaviours, you can start using energy more efficiently.

  • Dress for the weather. If it’s cold add some extra layers on, or if it’s warm, wear light-weight cotton to feel comfortable without having to turn the dial on your heating/cooling system.
  • Only heat/cool the room you’re in and close doors to maintain the temperature in the areas you’re using.
  • Insulate. Place draught sealing, like foam strips or door snakes, along the bottom of windows and doors to prevent any hot or cold air leaving.
  • Naturally heat your space. On winter mornings, open your curtains or blinds on the north, east and west sides to allow the sun to naturally heat your home or small business space.
  • In summer draw blinds and curtains early in the day to block out the summer heat.
  • The optimal household temperature is between 18 – 20°C in winter and 24 – 27⁰C in summer. Every degree above or below this range, depending on the season, can add an extra 10% to your heating or cooling bill

For most of us, the biggest users of energy in our homes and small business (aside from heating/cooling) are appliances – TVs, washing machines, fridges and freezers. Here a few simple tips that may help to reduce your energy consumption:

  • Switch off appliances at the wall when you’re not using them.
  • Set your dishwasher and washing machine to run during Off-Peak or shoulder times if you have a time of use or demand tariff, and not during Peak times during the day (unless you have a solar system).
  • When cooking, avoid running your oven for longer than needed, and keep lids on pots to heat them faster on your stove top.
  • Kettles can use a lot of energy, so only fill it to heat the amount of water you need.
  • Use the ‘eco’ setting on your dishwasher to lower its energy and water consumption and wait until it’s full before starting it up.

Lighting can use up a big portion of your energy bill, if not monitored carefully. Here are a few helpful tips:

  • Always remember to switch off the lights when you leave an empty room. 
  • Switch to LED bulbs, as they provide the same lighting but use less watts.
  • Think about solar lighting and sensor lights that only turn on when you are there.
  • Open blinds and curtains in the morning to light your home naturally – and for free.

Insulation is material that prevents hot and cold from leaving inside your house to outside – and in turn, helps to lower your energy bill. Here’s what you need to know:

  • There are many different types of insulation such as batts, blankets, boards or loose fill – choose one that’s right for your home, and make sure that it’s installed and maintained the right way. 
  • Draught sealing is one of the simplest ways to insulate your home, apply weather strips around the inside of door and window frames, you can stop air from coming in or out of your home, and reduce your energy use – along with your energy bills.
  • Built up dirt and dust can reduce the effectiveness of some types of insulation. The cleaner your insulation, the more energy efficient it will be. 
  • Chat to an expert and learn which insulation can help turn your home into a more energy-efficient one.

Energy efficiency schemes

There are four state-based energy efficiency schemes in Australia, which aim to reduce customers’ energy bills through energy efficiency measures.

These are the Energy Savings Scheme (ESS) in NSW, the Victorian Energy Upgrades (VEU) program, the ACT Energy Efficiency Improvement Scheme (EEIS) and the SA Retailer Energy Efficiency Scheme (REES).

These all have prescribed activities available to householders, such as hot water replacement and energy efficiency retrofits – such as replacing incandescent bulbs with LED bulbs and downlights and replacing wasteful shower roses with low flow shower roses. The Queensland government does not have a mandated scheme as yet, but advice about energy efficiency and reducing your electricity bill measures is available through their website.

SA Retailer Energy Efficiency Scheme

Victorian Energy Upgrades (VUE) program

NSW Energy Savings Scheme

ACT Energy Efficiency Improvement Scheme

QLD - Reduce your electricity bill