- Ensure your curtains cover the window to ensure there are no gaps to minimise heat loss.
- Thermal backed curtains are the best for minimising heat loss.
- Close your curtains at sundown to minimise heat loss.
- Make sure windows and doors are sealed properly; a hardware store has products available or you can make a ‘draught snake’ to place against doors which is as simple as stuffing a sock with material.
- Fill any gaps where cables or pipes exit an external wall.
- Change to energy efficient light bulbs.
- Turn appliances off at the wall rather than leaving them on standby mode.
- Installation of a ceiling fan, this can help circulate warmer air in the winter and keep you cooler in the summer.
- Insulation - up to 33% of your heat can be lost through the ceiling, walls and floors, insulation will minimise this heat loss.
- Your local hardware store will be able to give you advice on the right insulation for your home.
- Installation of a heat pump - heat pumps are up to four times more energy efficient than plug-in heaters.
- Make the change to solar power.
And remember, a dry home is easier and more efficient to heat and is better for your health too!
Bathroom and laundry
- Fix any taps or pipes that may be leaking.
- Keep your bathroom door closed to help prevent moisture spreading throughout your house.
- Installation of a 'low-flow' shower head may reduce water consumption if you have mains pressure hot water supply.
- A shower is generally more efficient than a bath because it uses less water.
Hot Water Cylinder
- The optimum temperature for your hot water cylinder is 55-60 degrees Celsius, any lower and bacteria will breed, any higher and the water may be heating more frequently than required which will increase your account.
- Use a hot water cylinder wrap to prevent heat loss.
- Wrap the pipes in your hot water cupboard with insulation foam, available from your hardware store.
- Check the overflow pipe (often located on the roof) regularly to ensure no dripping water. If the overflow pipe is dripping and/or steaming, this means hot water is being dumped - a plumber can fix this for you. If cold water is being dumped, the plumber can still fix it but it is less likely to seriously impact on your power bill.
- Switch off your hot water cylinder if you are going to be away from home for 10 days or more.
- Make sure your dryer is vented to the outside.
- Don't overload your dryer.
- If possible, buy a dryer that automatically senses when the clothes are dry.
- Where possible, use cold water to wash your clothes.
- If your washing machine has the functionality, change the water level to suit the size of the load you are washing.
- If you are doing a small number of dishes, use hot water from the kettle.
- Rinse dirty dishes in cold water rather than hot.
- It is generally more economical to use a dishwasher than to fill your kitchen sink three times.
- If your dish washer can be connected to cold water, it is more economical than transferring hot water from the cylinder through cold pipes.
- Only wash a full load of dishes in the dishwasher and use the economy setting.
- Use the element on the stove that matches the size of the pot you are cooking in.
- Use a minimal amount of water when you are simmering food.
- When cooking, use pot lids to stop the heat escaping.
- When using the oven, only open the door when absolutely necessary. Each time you open the door, the temperature drops about 15 degrees.
- Use your oven to cook more than one dish at a time.
- Try to use the microwave instead of the oven.
- Fill your kettle with only the amount of water needed.
- It is more economical to boil water in the kettle rather than on the hob.
- If you can, it is a good idea to position your fridge away from the heat and direct sunlight.
- Set the fridge temperature between 2 and 5 degrees, and your freezer to -18 degrees.
- Frost free freezers are less energy efficient than cyclic freezers.
- Try not to open the doors too often or leave them open.
- Make sure that doors have a good seal.
- Don't overstock the fridge or freezer, the air needs to circulate.
- Let food cool before placing it in the fridge.
- If your fridge has coils, dust them regularly to keep it running efficiently.
For further Residential Energy Saving Tips, you can find a helpful brochure from the Energy Efficiency Conservation Authority (EECA) here*.
*Requires Adobe PDF Reader software. If you do not have this software, you can download a free viewer from Adobe's web site.