Whether you work from home or have a family that can’t stand the chill, keeping yourself warm during winter can often mean a hefty energy bill.
And with one more month left of chilly weather, many Aussies may still be searching for the best way to keep warm at the lowest price.
According to energy retailer, Origin Energy, households across the country could save more than $1,000 on their winter energy bill just by heating a single room instead of the entire house.
But can simple changes like this really make an impact on our winter bill? Origin General Manager Customer Care, Jan Prichard said yes.
“Older heaters or cheaper portable units can be inefficient and costly to run. Doing something as simple as opting for an electric throw instead of a portable heater could help to bring energy costs down this winter,” she said.
“Electric throws cost between 3-4 cents to run per hour, while running costs for an electric heater can be over 15 times more.”
Getting appliance savvy
According to Origin, our choice of heating appliances is another area where we can trim our energy bill.
For many of Aussies our heaters are a one-off purchase, but this kind of long-term commitment could be doing more harm than good.
Running a 15-year old 3-5kW reverse-cycle air conditioner this winter compared to one bought today could be costing an extra $39 for households in QLD, $118 in SA, $167 in NSW, $236 in VIC and $141 in the ACT.
Reverse cycle air conditioners can also be up to four times more energy efficient than portable electric heaters, plus have the added benefit of being able to cool your home during summer.
But if you’re unable to have a split system installed, you can instead opt for a portable window/wall reverse-cycle air conditioner. When compared to a portable heater, savings can reach up to $570 for Victorians, around $400 for Aussies in NSW, $287 in SA and $341 in the ACT.
“There are lots of options to keep warm over winter that won’t break the budget and by knowing what to look out for, households can keep their bills in check,” said Prichard.
How our heater habits make a difference
When it comes to setting your thermostat, Aussies should be setting the temperature to 20 degrees. Increasing the temperature in an average Australian living room by 1 degree can hike energy bills by up to 10%.
“If you’re trying to cut energy costs anywhere you can, your heating habits are a great place to start,” said Mozo energy expert, Nathan Warne.
“The next time you find yourself reaching for the heating, try dressing warmer instead. It might not be as cold as you think and you could just need another layer of clothing. Plugging drafts in your home and covering your floor with woolen rugs can also help keep the heat in your home.”
“But if you really want to make an impact to your energy bill, switching energy retailers could be your best bet.”
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