How you can cut back on your gas use this spring
The warmer weather can be a trigger to lower your gas bill, as people start to have cooler showers and spend more time in the great outdoors. However, there are a few proactive tips you can use to ensure your gas prices stay low this spring.
Gas hot water systems
Gas hot water systems are better for the environment, producing fewer greenhouse gas emissions than the electric equivalent and there are two different types - storage water heaters and instantaneous systems.
Storage water heaters
Storage water heaters heat water in an insulated tank with a gas burner located underneath. In order to make your water heater more efficient, thereby saving you money on your gas bill, you should ensure it is well insulated.
These types of systems lose heat through the walls so adding additional insulation will reduce the amount of work it takes to keep water hot.
Instantaneous heaters on the other hand do not have issues with heat loss as the water is only heated as required.
Rather than heating up the whole tank, instantaneous systems heat the water in the heat exchanger, which is a coiled pipe. The burner starts up as the hot water is turned on at the tap.
Storage water heaters require a minimum temperature of 60 degrees to reduce the risk of growing harmful bacteria.
However, since instantaneous water systems do not store any water, the risk is reduced and you can set them to a lower temperature.
The Australian Department of Industry recommends setting it no higher than 50 degrees to save energy.
If you regularly use hot water, another tip to reduce your bill could be to invest in a water recirculation system. This will reduce wastage as it can take a few litres until the hot water is released.
Gas-boosted solar systems
If you are in a sunny area you may also want to consider a gas-boosted solar system that will reduce energy prices in your home, particularly over the spring and summer months.
How to make gas water systems more efficient
Many people decide to take a holiday during the warmer months of spring. If you are one of these people, consider switching off your heater while you are away to save on the prices of gas.
Also, it might pay to insulate your hot water pipes as heat can leach out, especially if your water pipes are metres long.
A well-maintained gas water system should have a life expectancy of around ten years so ensure you are getting yours checked out regularly in accordance with the manufacturer's requirements.
Posted by Callum Fleming