Can you beat the average?

The Australian Energy Regulator has calculated the average amount of electricity used in each type of household across the country.

The amount of energy you will use depends on the size of your house, the number of people who live there and how often they are home, as well as the different types of appliances that the household runs and how often they are used.

If you have a pool, spa or air conditioner, you can expect higher electricity bills as these appliances are energy guzzlers.

Seasons can have a big effect on the amount of electricity consumed, so keep the time of year in mind when doing an electricity comparison. In the darker wintry days, lights get turned on for longer periods of time, and power hungry heaters are used to warm up the house.

The type of home you live in can also affect electricity usage. Separate houses have higher electricity prices than detached, row or terrace houses. iIf you live in an apartment or flat you are in the dwelling with the lowest electricity bill.

However, the age of the dwelling does not alter the level of electricity consumption.

A typical four-bedroom property in Queensland will use 21 kWh per day of power over the year. In summer 20.9 kWh will be used per day, and in winter this figure goes up to 21.6 kWh. Typically spring is the month with the least electricity usage, down to 20.4 kWh. In autumn usage is generally 21.1 kWh.

The average use for a household of a similar age might feature on your power bill, and these averages are adjusted for the season. While they are just a benchmark, why not see if you can beat the average and lower your power bill?

According to the Bureau of Statistics, the average Australian household spent around $39 a week on energy sources used around the home, representing 5.3 per cent of total gross weekly household income.

Top ways to save power

In the warmer months you may want to turn on the air conditioner to keep cool. If you choose this method, make sure all your windows, doors, blinds and curtains are closed to keep the cool air in. The same goes in winter with the heater.

A fan is a cheaper to run alternative that will reduce your energy use when the mercury rises.

Installing efficient lights will also help you reduce your power bill, and encourage members of your household to switch them off when they leave the room.

Use appliances with good energy efficient ratings in order to save on power.

Posted by Charlie Moore