• Hot Water Cost Savings

    If you reduce the thermostat setting on your storage hot water service from 70 deg C to 60 deg C, you can reduce the standing losses in the system by up to 33%.

  • Efficient use of Air Conditioners...

    Every extra degree on your reverse cycle air conditioner control, adds 10% to your running costs.
    In summer, 27 degrees is best but don't go below 25, and in winter, aim for 18 degrees but don't go above 21.

  • Are you keeping your cool?

    Without seals in good condition, your fridge will be chewing through a lot more power than it needs to, cooling down all the warm air that leaks in. Close your fridge door on a $5 or $10 dollar note, and see how much effort it takes to pull it out with the door closed. If it slips out very easily, or worse yet, falls out by itself, then your door seals need attention. You should easily recoup the cost of repairs from your energy savings!

  • Most efficient heater?

    With every salesman shouting the merits of radiant, or convection, or ceramic, or what ever other kind of heater they have to sell, it can be a nightmare trying to figure out which is the best to use, and the cheapest to run. However, if it has a power plug - working out the comparative running costs is easy...

    Click here to read more.

  • The Cost of Cool

    The Sustainable Energy Authority of Victoria has produced a chart showing the relative costs of the various cooling systems available for the home.

    The following chart shows both running cost per hour, and greenhouse gas emission caused by the operation of common cooling systems.

    Click here to read more.

  • Drinks anyone?

    Do you have a second fridge, in the shed maybe? If you can do without it most of the time, run it when you need it and turn it off the rest of the time and save around $120 a year in running costs. What you save in power, could pay for the drinks at your next party!

  • Give wasted power the Brush-off

    When your fridge pulls the heat out of your food and drinks, it has to put it somewhere. It goes out through the radiator on the back of the fridge, or at least it tries to... Most fridges radiators are covered with insulating dust and fluff! Gently use your vacuum cleaner's brush on the rear of your fridge once a year. Your fridge will reward you with better efficiency if you do!

  • The big chill...

    Your Fridge is one of the biggest energy consumers in the average household. If it's not running in peak condition, it can be costing you a lot more than you think. When you clean the kitchen, open the fridge and clean the seals around the door with a damp sponge. This will help deter the mildew that can cause premature failure of the door seals. Without good seals, warm air leaks into the fridge boosting your running cost!

  • Gravity fed Hot Water?

    If your Hot Water service is a gravity fed unit in your roof space, your can reduce the thermal losses by placing a sheet of insulation material (eg. a pink bat) on top of the unit!

  • A bright idea...

    Figures from the South Australian Department for Transport Energy and Infrastructure show that if a 100w standard light bulb is replaced with a 20w Compact Flurescent bulb, over its seven year life it will save the householder more than $150 in total costs. Now with the advent of LED lightbulbs - the savings can be even greater!

  • Pushy Retailer?

    Is your Energy Retailer pushing you around? There is something you can do about it! Make a complaint with the SA Energy Industry Ombudsman. You can find their website at www.eiosa.com.au

A big part of saving cost, is reducing energy consumption. But how can you tell how well you are doing? One measure is to compare your own consumption with that of other energy consumers. You may already be using much less than others with the same size family, or perhaps you may find that you have room to do better on the energy conservation front.

 In this article, we present for you some statistics on average South Australian houshold energy consumption, so you can compare your own figures and see how well you are already doing...

With thanks to Monica Oliphant and the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the following chart breaks energy consumption figures down by household size, and type of energy used. The All Electric, All Gas, and Gas & Electric labels refer to the major household consumption devices - ie. water heating, room heating, and cooking. It is assumed that all households also use electricity for lighting and appliances.


  Household Type 
 All Electric  All Gas  Gas & Electric
 Number of
persons in
One 13.42 - 18.08   0 6.30 - 8.49  49.04 - 65.48  7.67 - 10.14   29.86 - 39.73
Two  18.08 - 24.11   0 9.04 - 12.05  73.97 - 98.63  12.33 - 16.44   44.38 - 59.18
 Three 20.82 - 27.67   0 11.51 - 15.34   94.25 - 125.75  14.25 - 19.18  52.05 - 68.77
Four 23.84 - 30.68   0  13.70 - 18.08 109.59 - 145.21   16.71 - 22.47  63.01 - 84.11
Five  33.42 - 44.66   0  16.44 - 21.92 126.85 - 169.86   20.55 - 27.40  68.49 - 90.41
Six or More  31.78 - 42.47   0  11.78 - 15.89 112.33 - 152.33  20.55 - 27.40   69.04 - 92.05


Select the row that indicates the number of people who live in your house, and the pair of collumns that represent your mix of energy supply (gas and/or electric). The numbers in the intersecting squares show you the range of how many kilowatt hours of electricity, and/or megajoules of gas those surveyed used each day on average.

Add up all the kWh and/or MJ numbers on all your bills for the last year and divide them by 365 to get an average figure that isn't too effected by seasonal variations.

 The closer to the bottom of the range of numbers in your square, the better you are doing! 

Now that you know how much energy you are using compared to others, you probably want to know how you can cut it back a bit more, without sacrificing too much of your lifestyle. In order to choose the right areas to attack, it is useful to know how much energy various appliances actually use. The perfect result is of course to measure the actual appliances in your home, but to help identify where the best savings can be made, the following table shows a typical breakdown of how much energy is being used where in the average South Australian home.


 Water Heating   28%
 Fridges & Freezers  17%
 Room Heating & Cooling  14%
 Lighting  9%
 Standby Power  7%
 Cooking  6%
 Other Appliances  19%
 Total  100%


When talking about saving power, the first thing most people think of is energy saver light bulbs. While they are great, give an immediate saving without loosing anything in lifestyle, and the incandescent alternative has been phased out, since lighting only accounts for 9% of the average power bill the savings that can be made are limited.

 While lighting savings are a good start, it is even more profitable to continue looking for savings  with the largest consuming devices - water heaters, fridges and freezers.

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