FRIDAY 04 JANUARY, 2013 |
10 Tips For Reducing Electricity Costs During Heatwaves
MEDIA RELEASE 4 January 2013: Solar energy provider Energy Matters is offering advice to help
Australians protect themselves from electricity bill shocks resulting
from excessive power consumption during heatwaves.
"This summer, most Australians will endure the highest electricity prices the country has ever
seen," says Energy Matters
Founding Director Nick Brass.
"Part of this is due to electricity generation companies cranking up their prices to ridiculous rates
"For example, a recent Melbourne heatwave saw the wholesale price of electricity
from $50 per MWh ($0.05 per kWh) to an astounding $12,500 per MWh ($12.50 per
kWh) - and this occurred in the space of a single day! These outrageous costs are
ultimately being passed on to all electricity customers."
Energy Matters suggests the following actions can help households stay cool
while reducing electricity consumption during days of extreme heat conditions.
- Keep your air-conditioner thermostat at 24 degrees. For every further 1C the
temperature setting is reduced, 10 per cent will be added to the unitís running costs.
- Where possible, use fans instead of air conditioning.
- Seal gaps around doors and windows to help prevent hot air entering your home.
- Turn off non-essential electric appliances as many of them use power in
standby mode, which generates heat.
- Close curtains during the day to help keep heat out and keep them open at
night if possible to help promote cooling.
- Keep rooms you aren't using closed off
- Try to prepare foods that require minimal amount of cooking and use a microwave where
- Replace any remaining incandescent light globes with CFL or LED bulbs. Most of
the power consumed by incandescent globes is turned into heat.
-† Keep windows shut in the hottest parts of the day and open
overnight if it doesn't pose a security issue; as this can help to substantially
cool your house.
- Enter and exit your home quickly - an open door on summer's day will allow a
great deal of heat to enter your home.
- If you already have a solar power system, run your air conditioner while the sun is shining to offset the cost of peak electricity rates and maximize your savings.
Energy Matters points out installing
a solar panel system
of 3kW capacity can save more than $600 off summer power bills and more than $1000 off
annual electricity bills. Solar panels can also help provide additional insulation
for your rooftop
The company offers more general tips for saving electricity here
The true cost of air conditioners†
The increase of air conditioner use has created a massive impact on
electricity infrastructure in Australia - and on the hip pockets of everyone;
including those who don't own a unit. According to the Energy Supply Association of Australia:†
- The number of household air-conditioner units has increased by approximately 2 million in four years
to a total of 9.2 million units.
- Each unit costs an average $1500 to install, but requires an extra $2000 of
mains grid investment.
- Non-air conditioner users effectively pay a $330 subsidy on the bills of users
due to this investment.
-† A quarter of† Australia's electricity infrastructure is built for use on
just a few days a year.
"Solar households generate electricity in heatwave conditions for a small
fraction of the ridiculous rates mentioned earlier and help take the strain off the grid during
these events. This goes some way towards reducing the need for additional
infrastructure." says Mr. Brass.†
"In situations of high energy demand during heatwaves, solar households are producing their own
electricity to help power their air-conditioning
units. Other households consume any surplus electricity generated by these systems;
meaning electricity retailers with a solid base of solar customers need to
purchase less additional
electricity at exorbitant prices from usual sources."
INTERVIEWS WITH NICK BRASS
Finbar Corrall on 02 9365 0007 or 0412 792 674
About Energy Matters
is one of Australia's largest companies solely dedicated to solar energy with warehouses around the country and a staff of over 100. The award winning business was founded in 2005 and has since installed over 15,000 solar systems on homes, schools and commercial
buildings throughout the nation.
Return to main renewable energy news section
Other Energy Matters News Services