Top proven ways to save money on your next heating and cooling bill
So you’ve ripped open the mail and were shocked to discover that your last energy bill had more zeros than you expected. Unless you’re running a tech-heavy business in Melbourne out of your home, your heating and cooling expense likely has something to do with it.
Turning off your system completely isn’t a solution to lowering your electric bill because the unpredictable Melbourne weather doesn’t allow it
Heating and cooling accounts for between 20 and 50 percent of your total energy consumption, so it’s not something new that your energy bills are higher than expected after the summer and winter.
So you don’t have to turn off everything and reduce your comfort, we’ve compiled a list of painless ways to lower the cost of your next heating and cooling bill.
Well, most of them are painless – some you’ll have to be persistent about.
1. Clean your filters
Cleaning your air conditioner filters is one change you can make right now.
If you don’t maintain your air filters, dust, mould spores, and pollen can build up, causing your air conditioner to stop working properly. Dirty or clogged filters reduce airflow, which affects the unit’s performance. This means you’ll have to run your air conditioner longer than usual to get your desired results.
By replacing dirty filters with clean ones, you can reduce your air conditioner’s energy consumption by 5 to 15 percent.
Take the filters outside, shake off the dust over a garbage can, and then hose or soak them as needed to clean them. Before reinstalling the filters, make sure they are totally dry.
Depending on the system, the air filters may have an arrow indicating which direction the filter should be inserted into the system. So be careful not to insert the filter the wrong way around, as this can affect the performance of your system. If in doubt, it’s best to consult your air conditioner’s manual to find out how to remove, clean and replace your filters.
2. Control the thermostat
On an unbearably hot day, you’ll be tempted to set the thermostat as low as possible. But the lower the desired temperature, the higher the operating costs.
And in Winter you are tempted to turn the thermostat up into the mid 20’s
In summer if you want to save power, It is recommended that you don’t set the thermostat below 24 degrees. This is because each degree below 24 increases energy consumption by 5 percent. So if you set a thermostat to the coolest setting, say 18 degrees, you’ll use a whopping 30 percent more energy than if you opt for a comfortable 24 degrees.
In Winter, if you can hand;e keeping your home to between between 18°C and 20°C. Every degree you increase your heating can add up to 10% on your energy use.
3. Reduce consumption by at least one hour
One hour less consumption per day is all you need to save. If you have a reverse cycle system, use it one hour less each day during the colder months and watch the zeros on your bills disappear.
4. Service your heating and cooling system
If your heating and cooling bill is still more than you anticipated, you should hire a licensed technician to perform maintenance.
A technician will check for leaks, test a unit’s performance, refill refrigerant, and perform a thorough cleaning to ensure your system is operating at optimal performance. He will be able to identify any problems or inefficiencies in your air conditioner, such as in the coils or fins.
Having a technician check your air conditioner or heater once a year can extend the life of the unit and enhance its efficiency, which can help reduce utility costs. It will also assist you in avoiding unexpected and costly repairs due to deteriorating parts that could cause your air conditioner to malfunction on a freezing cold night or a blazing hot day.
5. Sleep mode and timer
Another important tip is in summer, you certainly need the air conditioner to fall asleep comfortably. Still, once you’re asleep many air conditioners have timers and sleep functions that turn off or shut down the system after about an hour or so.
This way, you can save money by simply drifting off while you sleep while making the most of your air conditioner in the day’s heat when it’s really needed.
In winter , using electric blankets and making sure the heat stays in the house will keep you warm overnight while you sleep.
6. Insulate the ceiling
Okay, this point isn’t relatively as painless as the others. 25 to 35 percent of heat escapes through the ceiling. So on a cold winter night, you’ll be glad you made an effort to install insulation.
Installing insulation tiles above the ceiling goes a long way toward retaining heat in the winter and preventing it from seeping in during the summer. By improving the heating and cooling efficiency of the home, you reduce the need for heaters or air conditioners and therefore minimise utility costs.
Installing insulation mats can be messy and require certain safety precautions, but the results are definitely worth it.
7. Avoid adding heat in Summer
Summer in Melbourne is hot enough as it is! Give your air conditioner a break by avoiding heat-generating appliances. This can range from turning off the lights (when not in use) to grilling outdoors instead of cooking dinner in the oven or on the stove. This will definitely lower your electric bill.
8. Keep the cold out in Winter
In winter, keeping the home sealed so that the heat stays in will save you a lot of money. Feel for drafts and use simple draft stoppers to seal the bottom of doors, make sure that windows close securely and draw the curtains or blinds to keep the heat in the room. Close doors to rooms or areas that do not have to be heated
9. Negotiate a better price
This is not a myth. You can actually call your utility company and negotiate a better price. At the same time, it is unlikely that you will get a better price than your fellow customers. Still, a utility can give you a discount – something you can achieve if you call and take the initiative.
Even if the discount is only for a year or two, it’s better than nothing. And when the discount expires, there’s nothing to stop you from looking for a better price from a competitor.
Before you call, do your research. It can only help you if you are able to quote a competitor’s prices on the spot. If none of this helps, switch to the provider with the better price.
And if these tips aren’t enough to bring the electricity bill of your air conditioner down to an acceptable level, consider switching sources for your heating and cooling.
Evaporative cooling is an environmentally friendly method of cooling your home, with operating costs lower than a reverse cycle air conditioner.
Plus, natural gas is less expensive than electricity, so you can permanently ditch your electric heating and discover the benefits of gas heating.
Heating and cooling experts you can trust
The air conditioning specialists at Beyond Heating and Cooling have solutions to your air conditioning problems. Beyond Heating and Cooling is a local Melbourne based company that can leave you rapt with their quality work.