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5 hacks to cut your electricity bill

Energy bills are set to skyrocket by 20-30 per cent from July 1.

Saving money. Electricity usage.
Aussies will be slugged with higher electricity bills in the coming months. (Source: Getty)

Aussies will be slugged with higher electricity bills in the coming months, but there are some simple things you can do around the house to save.

From reconsidering your air conditioning temperature to switching off your appliances, Compare the Market has shared these five household hacks to lower your bill.

1. Adjust your air conditioning temperature

Heating and cooling make up a big chunk of your electricity bill - between 20 and 50 per cent. So, while it can be tempting to blast your air con to the coolest or warmest temperature, this can drive up your costs.

“Not only does running your unit too cool make it work harder and use more power, but every degree cooler can add up to 10 per cent more to your electricity usage,” Compare the Market’s Chris Ford said.

Other tips are closing all doors, windows and blinds to maximise your air con’s efficiency, regularly cleaning and servicing your air con, covering any outdoor compressors with shade, and opting for fans where you can.

2. Check your pool pump

Pool pumps are another energy guzzler, accounting for up to 18 per cent of electricity bills for pool owners. So it’s important to check the energy efficiency.

“Last October, it became compulsory for all pool pumps sold in Australia to meet new mandatory efficiency standards and to display an energy rating, so people know how much power they can expect their pumps to use,” Ford said.

You could also save by investing in a pool cover, running your pool pump during the day if you have a solar system, limiting the amount of time you use your pump and cleaning your filter regularly, Ford said.

3. Turn off your appliances

Televisions, fridges, dishwashers, washing machines and other appliances account for around a quarter of home energy use.

“We know that switching off devices at the wall when you’re not using them can slash your bill by as much as 10 per cent. Every dollar counts,” Ford said.

Other tips include setting your fridge’s temperature to between 3 and 4 degrees and ditching the clothes dryer when you can.

4. Update older appliances

If you have older appliances, upgrading them could save you in the longer term. According to Compare the Market, a fridge from the ‘90s uses three times more electricity than a new model. And if your dishwasher is more than 10 years old, it can use 25 per cent more power.

If you do upgrade, make sure to check the energy-star rating. Models with higher ratings use less electricity, which can save you money over time.

5. Maximise your solar power

Solar PV systems can help you claw back cash, but there are things you’ll need to do to see the best results.

“Solar systems generate power during the day so, unless you’re using this power throughout the day, exporting it to the grid or storing it in a battery to use at a later time, you could be missing out,” Ford said.

You can also save by swapping halogen light bulbs for LEDs. They use about 75 per cent less energy and last five to 10 times longer.

Along with these household tips, it’s also important to shop around and make sure you are getting a good energy deal.

Also check whether you are eligible for any government rebates or concessions, such as Victoria’s $250 Power Saving Bonus.

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