Feeling the heat on your power bills?
Make sure you're prepped with some pro tips on how to save energy and make sure you're not paying more for your power than you should be. Think of this as a power health check (but without the cold stethoscope!).
LEDs are worth their weight in gold
Energy efficient lightbulbs can slash 85% of a household’s lighting costs - around $400 per year, or 20% of the average household’s total electricity cost! LED bulbs also have an estimated 10 year life so the savings really add up over time.
Just changing a few bulbs in the house can make all the difference - read more over on the EECA energy efficent light bulbs tool here.
Slow and steady dinner wins the race
Cooktops are some of the most power hungry units - they use on average 1.7 units of power per half hour. That's nothing to scoff at! The good news is that you've got an alternative - the humble slow cooker.
A slow cooker uses on average a teeny tiny 0.043 units of power every half hour. To put that into perspective, you'd need to use it for a whopping 19 HOURS to match the cooktop's half hour! Considering that most slow cooker recipes are around 6-8 hours - baby, you got a stew going.
Heat pump over heater any day!
We all know that the basic heaters are a bit of a money-sink: the average fan heater is 1.2 units every half hour. That's why, if you have the choice, use your heat pump! For that same half hour, you'll only use 0.5 units of power!
You can read more about heat pumps, and what yours might cost, over on the EECA website.
Drip dry or tumble dry? Drip, drip, drip.
While it makes all those sheets feel warm, the clothes dryer can be a bit of a drain on the power bill. Sitting at an average 0.875 units per half hour, and typically taking 1-2 hours to run, it can start to stack up!
Instead, why not give the good old fashioned washing line a spin? Get the washing machine running overnight, and hang it up bright and early in the morning! By the time you come home for your stew, those sheets will be crisp and clean.
What goes into my bill?
Your power bill is made up of a number of charges from a number of companies including generators, your local lines company, the company that provides the meter on your house, and your retailer (that’s us!). There’s also the Electricity Authority levy (which is the same for everyone), and GST.
What else? Your pricing plan can impact on the cost of your power bill, too, but no matter which pricing plan you're on, your bill will be heavily influenced by how much power you use. That's because usage, or consumption, is dynamic and hugely dependent on that one thing none of us can control: the weather. And the chilly temperatures and darker days of the winter months usually mean we're inside more, and using more power to stay warm and dry.
Can I make my winter bills more predictable?
Your niece came to stay and used all the hot water (half hour showers, Jeanie, really?!)? We know that sometimes life happens, and you’ll have higher bills that no amount of energy savings tips can help - that's why Volt is on hand to help keep your bills sailing smoothly.
When you set up your Volt, you’ll choose an amount that you’d like to round your power bills up to. When your power bills are lower than that amount, the difference will top up your Volt credit and, over time, build up a stash of cash that you can put towards any higher-than-usual bills.
When Jeanie's antics push the bill above the Volt threshold, we dip into your Volt to help out! And you can pause it anytime.
Want to know more? Check out how Sophie was able to create the ultimate in bill predictability with her flatties here!
Am I on the right plan?
Pre-winter is the perfect time to check you're on the right user plan for your household's situation.
Distribution companies charge different metering rates for Low Users and Standard Users of electricity to make sure there’s a fair spread of cost amongst users.
If you're on the wrong plan and using alot more or less power than the plan's threshold, it can mean you end up paying more for your power than you should be. Have a read of What's Your User Plan, Stan and make sure you're on the right track!