Energy saving big ideas

Read up on some of the big changes you can make around your home to reduce your energy use.

Big ways to lighten your power load

Sometimes, big changes are needed to really make a difference.

While some of these changes might take time, they’ll offer longer term ways to reduce your energy usage. 

The family room

Purchase light furniture
Next time you buy furniture, consider choosing lighter colours. These will brighten your rooms and make them easier to light.

Reduce downlight use
Install fewer downlights to cut the amount of energy needed to light a room. Having downlights may also reduce the insulation in your ceiling, making it harder to heat or cool the room.

The kitchen

Defrost and check the seals on your fridge and freezer
Energy saving big ideas for the kitchen focus on your fridge and freezer. Defrost and clean your fridge regularly, including the coils at the back.

Make sure your oven, fridge and freezer are working effectively by checking their seals are fitted properly. The seals should hold a piece of paper in place when the appliance doors are closed.

Buy energy-efficient dishwashers
A dishwasher with options such as rinse only, economy cycle and washing with cold water is best.

The laundry

Buy energy-efficient washers
Front loader washing machines are more energy efficient than top loaders.

Appliances suited to your needs
Buy a washing machine and clothes dryer that suits your household size and needs. And make sure it allows you to change the amount of time and water needed to wash your clothes.

The bathroom

Insulate your hot water pipes and tanks
This minimises heat loss.

Change to gas
Switch from electric to gas hot water to really take advantage of an energy saving big idea. Turn your gas hot water service to vacation mode if you're away for a few days.

Use solar energy
Converting to a solar hot water system could save you money on your energy bills. You’ll also be using a clean and renewable source of energy that is good for the environment.

Outside

Look after your pool
Always keep the temperature of your swimming pool below 27°C. Use a timer to operate the filter pump and reduce its running time.

To help you accomplish these energy saving big ideas, ask your pool supplier to advise you on what the optimal running time is for your pool pump. Use a cover or blanket on pools and spa pools when not in use.

Cooling and heating

Check your insulation
To avoid losing heat in your home check your ceiling, external walls and floors are sufficiently insulated.

Choosing window coverings and double-glazing
Choosing the right curtains and outside window coverings will create a consistent temperature inside your home and help reduce power bills.

If renovating, consider double-glazing your windows to reduce the amount of heat lost.

Check the ducts
Check your ducts are properly sealed to increase the effectiveness of your heating and cooling systems.

Buying energy-efficient appliances

These energy saving big ideas will help you choose the most suitable energy-efficient accessories for your home.

Research online first
Before buying appliances, research and compare products online to see how energy efficient they are. You can compare product types and brands at  energyrating.gov.au .

Some state government websites provide a summary of appliance running costs (per hour), which can help you select the most appropriate one for your needs.

Choose high “star” energy rated appliances
Appliances with a high star energy rating are more efficient. The more stars an appliance has, the less energy it uses. Appliances or systems should have a programmable timer and thermostat.

Select appliances suitable to your household and climate
An energy saving big idea here is to only buy an appliance that’s suitable for your household size and that won't use more energy than you need.

Also, choose an appliance that’s suitable for your local climate. Some appliances work more effectively depending on the climate.