How to save energy in spring
Spring can be a tricky time to manage your power use. It’s not overly hot or cold, however the fluctuations in temperature can mean you have the heater on one minute and the air conditioning the next - leading to higher energy costs.
Here are some simple energy savings tips to get you through…
1. Keep your home comfortable
If your home is comfortable during the day but gets a little chilly at night, think proactively and turn your electric heating on in the last hour or so of sunlight. That way you can take the chill out without having to keep the heating on all night and draw down your battery. Set the temperature for 20°C if you are heating – each additional degree adds between 5% and 10% to your energy use. Boil the kettle before the sun goes down and fill a hot water bottle for your bed. It will still be nice and warm when you hit the hay.
And always dress for the weather. It sounds too easy but so many of us will turn the heating on instead of walking to our wardrobe to grab something. Put on a jumper and warm footwear when the temperature drops and keep a blanket handy in the living room. The difference between indoor and outdoor temperatures can be stark.
When the weather starts to warm up, go to ceiling and pedestal fans before you reach for the air-con remote. Open windows to get more air circulating through your home. Moving air provides localised cooling - often all that is needed to keep you comfortable. If you need to put the air conditioner on, set the thermostat to 24°C. This will ensure you cool your home efficiently without having to compromise on comfort.
2. In hot water
With the freezing mornings now behind us, you can consider having shorter showers to save on water and energy. Try setting a timer for two minutes and you’ll make big savings.
Wash clothes on the cold water cycle as much as possible and ditch the clothes dryer for some fresh warm air and UV rays (wonderful bacteria buster!).
Spring is a good time to take a look at your fridge before it fills up with BBQ leftovers. Clean and defrost your fridge and check the temperature is set correctly. Your fridge should be -4°C and freezer -18°C. Consider turning off any additional fridges and freezers unless you really need them. Second fridges are often older models that are far less efficient – they can add up to 10% to your energy use - ouch!
Don't forget to check seals for air leaks. They break down over time because the fridge is one of the most popular appliances in your home as anyone with growing teenagers can attest!
You might consider upgrading to an energy efficient fridge to help further minimise running costs.
By swapping halogen downlights for LEDs, you can cut down on your power bill and reduce heat in the home. Halogen lights can run at over 300°C, making LEDs a much more efficient and safer option. You can also phase out using the heat lamp in your bathroom now that the mornings are warming up a little.
Warmer weather also means more direct sunlight…and longer days. Open curtains during the day to get those free rays lighting your home rather than reaching for the light switch.
5. Give your home a spring clean
Spring is also a good time to get your ducted, split system, or evaporative cooling system ready for the hot summer ahead. Much like you might prepare your garden for those scorching days, you can spring clean your home too. Clean out the air filters in your air conditioner and test the system is running efficiency. Blockages can cause the unit to use more energy and result in poor air quality. You can dust off your ceiling and pedestal fans too to get them clean and ready for some spring/summer action. The longer you can delay using the air conditioner, the more money stays in your pocket.
If you have a swimming pool you can do the same. Clean the pool filter, cleaner and any baskets so they are working their best. Set your pump to run during the day when you are producing your own clean, renewable energy.
6. Go electric!
If it’s time to replace any of your appliances, choose electric and look for a high energy star rating. That will help you get the most out of your Solar Battery System. Large ovens are great if you are cooking a Sunday roast, but if you’re making smaller meals large ovens can be inefficient and another source of heat in the home. Consider purchasing a smaller plug-in oven however, avoid the temptation to collect too many appliances as this can also be an energy trap.
Bonus tip for further energy savings:
You may also want to look at making your home more comfortable by installing double glazing, block-out curtains or ceiling fans. These are simple additions to your home that will help you beat the heat….or cold air – spring can’t quite make its mind up!
For more information on how Plico can help you take action, reduce your power bills and generate and control your own power, day or night, contact us or speak to one of our friendly team members on 1300 175 426.
We hope you found some value in these spring energy saving tips. Do you have any more you'd like to share? Or any stories on how you lowered your energy bill? Let us know in the comments below.