Utility bills can be a large part of an average household’s expenditure and sometimes it can seem that there’s very little that can be done to reduce these costs. The reality is that there are actually a number of things, big and small, that you can do around your house to reduce your electricity bill.
Install energy efficient light bulbs
Light bulbs spend a lot of time on, and can be a drain on power, especially if they are incandescent bulbs. These can be replaced easily these days with more efficient bulbs. Currently LED bulbs are the most efficient on the market, and represent a noticeable decrease in energy consumption compared to even fluorescent bulbs.
Turn off appliances at the wall when not in use
Devices like the TV and oven use power when they’re not in use. This includes when the TV screen is turned ‘off’. In reality it’s on ‘standby’ and it’s sucking power. Turning these appliances off at the wall when they’re not in use will prevent this excess electricity usage. You can speak to your local residential electrician for a full list of these appliances, as they may change from home to home.
You can also buy power boards with individual switches, allowing you to switch off individual devices without turning the whole board off.
Turn off light switches when leaving the room
Sometimes it’s the little things that can add up to make a big difference. Just turning off light bulbs when you leave the room will help reduce energy usage in your home. It will also increase their lifetime, saving money on replacement bulbs as well. Some bulbs also generate a lot of heat, so turning them off in summer will also keep cooling costs down.
If you don’t have the cheapest electricity rates, it would be best to opt for Light Emitting Diode (LED) light bulbs since they produce the most light with the least electricity.
Buy energy efficient appliances
Some appliances can’t be turned off at the wall as they are constantly in use. Examples of these include fridges and freezers. But you can be proactive about reducing your energy consumption when buying these. Just look for the government energy rating label sticker to see how well the appliance rates for energy use.
Shut doors to areas being heated
Heating is usually one of the largest costs associated with your electrical bill. You can reduce this cost by being strategic when heating your house. Closing off doors to rooms not in use will stop heat from escaping through them. Some air conditioning systems can heat individual rooms as well. Close off the door from that room to the rest of the house to also prevent heat escape.
Wash your laundry on cold cycles
A large part of the energy use of your washing machine comes from heating the water up. However, cold water actually works just as well for most clothes. And for materials that do require a warmer wash, having a more energy efficient washing machine is beneficial.
Be on the lookout for electrical leaks
An electrical leak happens when something like a damaged wire or a bad connection allows current to flow from areas it should be flowing through to areas that it shouldn’t. This can have a very noticeable effect on your power bill, as there will usually be a constant flow of electricity from part of the house. This should be very apparent on your power bill, which will be much higher than usual.
Other signs of an electrical leak include frequent power cuts, abnormally high temperatures inside the house and electric shocks when handling appliances. As well as being costly, electrical leaks can be very dangerous, so be sure to call a 24-hour electrician in Perth the moment you suspect you have one.
Also be sure to be prompt when arranging electrical repairs in Perth of any kind. They are usually dangerous and will almost always have a negative effect on your power use while they are unresolved.
Hot air rises, escaping through the ceiling in winter. In order to prevent this you can have insulation installed in the roof space. This will reduce the effort needed by the heater to keep the house warm, reducing its power consumption. Curtains are also a source of insulation. Closing them in summer will keep some of the heat out, and in winter they will keep some of the heat in. Lastly, though not as common, double glazed windows will have a similar effect as closed curtains.
All these ideas work best when the family is working together to implement them. Teaching children about the importance of saving money and not being wasteful with electricity will help improve the effect of things like turning off light bulbs when leaving a room. It will ensure all your hard work is not for nothing, and will instill good values into the children that they can take forward with them into their own life.
Invest in solar panels
Probably the most impactful of all, installing solar panels will have a very noticeable effect on reducing energy costs, especially in summer. It is the most costly option, however. But even if you can’t afford to install a full solar array, you can still buy a solar hot water heater. This will use the free sunlight, especially in summer, to heat the hot water for your house.
Speak to your electrician
Electrical matters are almost never one size fits all. Speak to a qualified electrician for some more personal recommendations.