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Five ways to reduce your energy bill now that won’t cost a thing

Hot water—potentially the single biggest source of energy use in your home.

Wash clothes in cold water and only wash full loads. Run the dishwasher only when it’s full. Fit a low-flow showerhead (it’ll pay for itself in no time) and take shorter showers.

Climate control—heating and cooling are usually the next biggest energy guzzlers.

In winter, set your heating thermostats between 18 to 20°C. In summer, set your cooling thermostats between 25 to 27°C. Every extra degree increases your heating and cooling energy use by between 5 and 10%. Close internal doors and only heat or cool the rooms you are using.

Window watch—up to 40% of the heat in your home could be leaking out your windows.

In winter, open curtains to let the sun in and close curtains before it gets dark to keep the heat in – especially while your heater is on. In summer, close curtains during the hottest part of the day. At night you can open curtains and windows to let warm air out and cool breezes in.

Use appliances wisely—they could be responsible for as much as 33% of your energy bill.

Turn off additional fridges and freezers when not needed and think about getting rid of these. Fill the kettle and pots with only as much water as you need. Dry clothes on the line not in a dryer—it’s free!

Turn it off at the wall—standby power can account for more than 10% of your household electricity use.

Any items with a little light on or clock are using power, and your mobile phone charger is drawing power even when your phone is not plugged in. Turn off appliances at the wall when you’re not using them—it’s a very easy way to save energy. Consider smart power boards and take control of your technology.

Source: http://yourenergysavings.gov.au/ (Department of the Environment and Energy)

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