The school holidays are just about over, whether it’s kindergarten or year eight, back to school for most parents can be a stressful time of year. With the school holidays finally over it means a lot of change at home, including to your power bill.The house may be empty all of a sudden but don’t fret the opportunities to save on your electricity bill.
Follow our back to school energy saving tips to put your household in the good books!
What goes up must come downMany of us across the country have been sweltering away while battling heatwaves. With the kids back at school it means you don’t need to cool your entire house.
- Close off rooms not in use - this keeps your house cool only where you need it
- Set the air conditioner between 23℃ - 26℃. Your air conditioner uses more power and costs you more for every degree you set it below the outdoor temperature.
You can save as much as 10 per cent a year on your heating and cooling costs by simply turning your thermostat back three to eight degrees.
- While everyone’s at school don’t leave the air conditioner on all day - take advantage of your air conditioner’s timer and energy saving features when possible. Set it on a timer so when you get home your house is cool and comfortable. At night put it on sleep mode to get a better night’s rest
- Consider using a fan with an open window at night to beat the heat
Kids gone? Unplug it all!
- With no one home to use them unplug gaming consoles, phone charges and laptops. Appliances and devices still use power even when they’re not on. Switch off appliances at the power point when not in use – standby power can contribute up to 10 per cent of your power bill
- Smart plugs - if your kids are prone to forgetting things or perhaps you don’t want the hassle of remembering to switch appliances off at the wall, a great solution is to purchase some smart plugs. Smart plugs allow you to control when your appliances use energy by setting a timer for them to switch off when you’re least likely to be using them. When your kids are at school is a great time to switch off the TV and Xbox!
- Recharge - get more value from your solar panels by investing in a solar battery. Reposit Powered solar battery setups, let you use energy the way you want while still lowering your power bill. Working with your solar panels, a smart solar battery system can predict how much electricity your panels will create, and will know when to store this in your battery to lower your power bills. Never think about how much electricity your kids cost you again because they left the TV on or the door open when the air conditioner was blasting.
Sunny side up
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Be cool, close the fridge
- When you’re preparing lunches for the kids, get all the food you will need from the fridge at once. Constantly opening and closing your fridge means it will have to work extra hard to maintain a consistent temperature using more energy - costing you much more.
- Speaking of temperature the recommended operating temperature for a fridge is 3°C – 5°C and the recommended freezers range is minus 15°C – minus 18°C. If your fridge or freezer is not set at the recommended temperature you will find that you’re wasting a lot of money running it inefficiently.
- Check the seals - potentially the easiest way to improve your fridge’s energy efficiency is to make sure that the doors are sealed properly. If your fridge or freezer’s doors don't seal properly, cool air leaks out and more energy is required to keep the contents of your fridge or freezer at the correct temperature. Loose or broken seals can amount to a lot of wasted energy and therefore a lot of wasted money.
Fill her up before you turn her on
- Now that the kids won’t be eating all day long, you won’t have to use the dishwasher all day either. Rather than turn it on when it’s only half full wait until you fill it up - using the dishwasher at half capacity uses the same energy for a full load.
- Save more on your power bill and while the kids are at school put in a dishwasher cleaner. German dishwasher giant Miele recommends you use a dishwasher cleaner up to three times a year based on regular cycles once a day (seven days a week).
- Now that you’ll probably only use the pool on the weekends, heating your pool for what’s left of summer might be costly, so opting to only heat when you’re most likely to use your pool will enable you to reduce your pool running costs and still enjoy your pool.
- If you’re on a time-of-use electricity plan, electricity is cheaper at night time, so use timers to run your pool pump and filter through the night rather than at peak times during the day.
- Timers are also a great option to control pool lights and thermostats. Set them to turn off at a certain time, so you don’t have to worry about remembering to switch them off.