The demand for electricity and gas tends to increase in the winter simply because people are consuming more energy to stay warm. Hot showers, indoor heating and heated blankets are all winter warmers that will inflate your energy bills.
While you can not avoid the change in season, you can make improvements to your lifestyle and your home to maximise your energy efficiency and minimise your power bill. Here are some simple yet effective ways to achieve that.
Reassess Your Heating System
If you are living in an old house that came with a several decades-old heating system, chances are your home isnot warming up evenly. An outdated heating system is also likely to consume more electricity than required. Take a look at your current heating system and consider getting it repaired or replaced for long-term energy savings.
Change Your Energy Provider
As the demand for energy increases during the winters, energy rates will rise as well. Consider switching to a cheaper energy plan right at the end of summer or the start of autumn. If you are looking for economic plans for your home, check out AGL for competitively priced electricity plans.
Utilise Natural Light
There is plenty of sunlight available, and it doesnot cost a thing. Somake the most of it and open your blinds on sunny days to naturally brighten and warm your house instead of cranking up the thermostat.
Your HVAC system may be working optimally, but any leaks or gaps in the insulation can lead to avoidable energy loss. In fact, most Australian homes are not equipped with adequate insulation to keep in warmth during the winter. Call a repairman and ask them to inspect the insulation around your house to ensure it is packed for the winter.
Wear Extra Layers Indoors
If you are dressing like it is summer indoors, perhaps you have the heater working too hard. Start dressing smartly by wearing a few extra layers of warm clothing in doors to keep your electricity usage to a minimum.
Install a Programmable Thermostat
Rather than dialling up the thermostat to warm your home quickly when you come back from work, install a programmable thermostat. You can set the time and temperature you want your house to be heated to, and a programmable thermostat will do the job automatically.
Switch to Energy-Efficient Lighting
As the days become shorter, your lighting needs will drastically increase. That is why it is necessary to replace inefficient CFLs and incandescent lights with LEDs. In addition to being energy-efficient, LEDs are also far more durable.
Wash Clothes at Lower Temperature
Washing clothes in overly hot water is unnecessarily increasing your energy costs. Moreover, hot water can shrink your clothes, set in stains and make dyed clothing bleed. Try to throw on a cold wash, not only for better energy savings but to prevent your clothes from being ruined. It is also best practice to make sure you have a full laundry basket before you turn the machine on.
Install Window Treatment
Windows are aesthetically pleasing, but they are also energy drainers—they heat rooms up in summer and cool them in winter. Instead of leaving your windows bare, install the right window treatment to enhance energy efficiency. Suitable drapery or blinds can prevent energy loss as well as increase your home’s resale value.
Unplug Vampire Appliances
This tip is applicable all year round. Unplug vampire appliances that continue to consume energy when turned off by going into standby mode. Alternatively, you can install power strips so that you don’t have to keep unplugging and replugging appliances.
Becoming conscious of your energy consumption will not only help you save on power bills, but also lower your carbon footprint. Follow these simple tips and make small changes in your home in the coming winter months to see long-term savings.