Improving the energy efficiency of your home doesn’t have to break the bank. There are many improvements you can make on a small budget.
And if you’re looking at making larger changes, chat with us about the financial savings you’ll make in the long-term. While upfront costs can be high, it’s worth it for the big decrease in energy bills and we can help you crunch the numbers to find out the savings you could be making.
Home appliances account for as much as 30 per cent of your overall energy use - so highly energy efficient appliances can dramatically reduce your power bills.
Choose energy-efficient appliances with the highest star rating.
Upgrade your hot water system to a hot water heat pump.
For heating and cooling, install a reverse cycle air conditioner and in summer, use a fan instead of air con.
Use a front-loader washing machine - it uses less water and needs less detergent than a top loader.
Swap old light bulbs for LEDs.
Install a water-efficient shower head.
Wash your laundry in cold water.
Skip the clothes dryer. Sunshine and wind are free - so use your clothesline or hills hoist.
Keep showers short.
Pop a bucket in the shower to collect water as its heating, and use the water on your garden.
Think about what you want before opening the fridge door, so the door isn’t open for long.
Turn lights off in rooms you’re not in.
Keep your freezer full. Fill bottles with water and keep them in the freezer to keep it full.
Only heat and cool the rooms you’re using. Keep the doors closed to keep the cool or heat in.
Switch appliances and other electrical items off at the wall.
Turn on the dishwasher only when it’s full.
The average Melbourne home, built before the 1990’s, is especially draughty - or leaky. In fact, it wasn’t until 2003 that the Building Code of Australia set housing energy efficiency standards. When gaps are sealed and draughts are blocked, your heating and cooling won’t have to use as much energy to keep your home at a comfortable temperature.
Spend some time checking every room in your home for gaps in these areas:
around doors and windows
where pipes and wiring penetrate walls
built-in air wall conditioners, heaters and evaporative cooling outlets
along cornices and skirting boards
exhaust fans in the toilet, laundry and bathroom
chimneys and fireplaces
exposed ceiling beams and rafters
behind ovens, fridges and dishwashers
There are a range of improvements you can make yourself to seal the gaps.
Use a door snake.
Attach a plastic or metal weather seal to the bottom of external doors. Apply self-stick weather stripping around door edges.
Permanently seal a wall vent by filling it with caulking compound, plaster or sealants. If you’re renting, you can make a temporary solution by covering the vent with a sheet of clear contact adhesive.
Apply self-stick weather stripping between the sash and window frames. Apply weatherproof caulk around the edges of the window.
Fill gaps around pipes / plumbing, cornices and skirting boards with clear silicone sealant or expanding polyurethane spray foam, depending on the size of the gap.
Seal your chimney/fireplace with a damper.