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Ways to save money on rising energy prices

Smart meters can help bring down electricity prices 16000646 800506563 0 0 7071849 300

There are plenty of ways to save money on energy bills, despite ever-increasing electricity and gas prices - and a new study has shown just how effective these can be.

The Central Victoria Solar City (CVSC) trial published a final report this week, with the project making up a part of the wider Solar Cities Program to examine barriers to reducing energy consumption.

Households were given access to a range of energy saving packages and information, and their usage was tracked over a five-year period compared with a control group that was given no guidance.

Here are just some of the ways households began to save money during the scheme, which may give you a few ideas on how to cut your energy bills.

Energy audits

Home energy assessments were offered to those taking part in the scheme, resulting in a nine per cent reduction in consumption for homeowners (compared with the control group).

The 90-minute audits included advice on active and passive heating and cooling; lighting; appliances; and insulation and draft-stopping, among other recommendations.

If you are hoping to compare electricity providers or simply save money on your next bill, this may be an option to consider - at the very least you'll know where all of your money is going!

Glen and Peta Heyne took part in the study, and they had this to say about home energy assessments.

"We became more conscious in how to reduce our energy, such as buying more efficient appliances next-time around," the couple stated.

"For example, the oven we purchased has no digital clock running 24/7, so there isn't any energy wasted when not in use. We used to leave standby on but now we don't."

IHDs and smart meters

Another method to save energy consumption used during the scheme was in-home displays (IHDs) attached to smart meters.

These devices track your electricity use and then offer a digital reading of how much you are using.

Households using IHDs and smarter meters managed to trim five per cent of their consumption, with many cutting out lazy habits such as leaving the lights on (53 per cent) and forgetting to turn the television off (45 per cent).

If you are hoping to make small behavioural changes that could dramatically slash your energy bills, why not research smart meters and see if they are for you?

Participants claimed they not only helped reduce consumption but made them more knowledgeable about their energy usage in general.

Posted by Matthew Cole