TVs and electricity prices - keep an eye on your costs
When it comes to saving electricity at home, you have probably heard of the traditional strategies - turning your thermostat down by a few degrees, keeping lights off unless you are using them and ensuring your appliances are switched all the way off, rather than sitting on standby.
You might have even made a recent white goods purchase with energy efficiency in mind - by law, items like refrigerators, freezers, washing machines and dryers all feature an energy star rating to help you clearly see how much electricity they use.
But have you ever considered how much electricity your TV consumes?
According to Australia's Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, televisions are Australia's fourth-largest consumer of household electricity - behind water heating, lighting and refrigeration.
Wide-screen TVs can be even bigger energy-users, which is why it is more important than ever before for financially conscious customers to ensure they are using an efficient model.
The government estimates that around one in four Australians purchases a new television set each year - and from 2012, minimum standards of efficiency will be increased from their current levels to account for new developments in technology.
If your family is thinking about treating yourselves to a new television this holiday season, you might want to spend some time checking the information on the label to make an informed decision about its energy consumption.
Details you'll want to keep in mind include the TV's total kilowatt hours (kWh) per year - obviously a smaller number is likely to lead to greater energy savings.
The government recommends that you also calculate your television's running costs with some simple math. All you need to do is multiply the kWh from the label of your TV by $0.15 - while electricity prices can vary, this will give you a reasonable estimate of how much it will cost you to run your TV each year.
For an even easier way to quickly gauge how energy efficient your TV is, check the label for its star rating. The more stars your TV has, the higher its rating - and the more energy-efficient it is likely to be.
Of course, there are lots of other ways to cut down on electricity prices around the home - including better insulation in your renovation plans or switching to a more efficient hot water system are two great ways to potentially save money in the long-term.
Posted by Charlie Moore