Energy and water bills can be really expensive, so we worked with comedian Sean Choolburra to help you save on both. Read our tips and tricks on how to reduce your energy and water costs.
Reduce your energy and water costs
There are plenty of things you can do to reduce your electricity usage around the home and save money.
- Save $300 a year by turning off the second fridge and freezer when you’re not using them. You can also save a lot by replacing your old fridge with a more energy efficient one.
- Keep seals around the fridge doors clean and defrost freezers at least twice a year.
- Run your dishwasher with a full load on an economy cycle and clean filters regularly.
- Don’t pour money down the drain - instead of washing dishes under a running tap, turn it off and use a plug.
- Boil water in your kettle first then transfer it into a pot for cooking.
- Wash vegetables in a bucket or bowl and then recycle the water by using it on your plants.
- Use lids on pots to speed up cooking.
Bathroom and laundry
- Hot or warm washing machine cycles use a lot of extra energy. Wash clothes in cold water to save up to $124 a year and try to only wash full loads.
- If the sun’s shining use nature’s dryer – hang your clothes outside!
- Fix leaking taps and toilets. A dripping tap can waste around 2000 litres per month.
- Water heating accounts for about 21% of household energy use. Make sure your hot water system suits your household’s size and consumption.
- If you use an air conditioner, set the temperature to 24-26 degrees in summer and 18-21 degrees in winter. Every degree outside this range can add up to 10% to your heating and cooling costs.
- Before you turn your heater on this winter, locate draughts and block them with door snakes, curtains and other seals. Around a third of your house’s heat can escape through gaps and cracks.
- An extra layer of clothing and another blanket on your bed will keep you comfortable in cooler months, so consider these easy options before you turn the heater up.
- Switch to low-energy LED lighting. The bulbs last longer and you’ll replace them less often.
- Turn off lights that are not being used and use daylight when you can – it’s free!
- Switch computers and game consoles off at the wall and save up to 7% on your bill.
- Use fans instead of air conditioning – they are cheap to run, costing just 3 to 5 cents an hour.
- Wash your car at a car wash that recycles water.
- Give the hose (and water) a break by using a broom or rake to clean driveways and footpaths.
- Use mulch on your garden - without it up to 70% of water is lost due to evaporation.
- Consider native plants. These plants are used to our climate and can flourish on very little water. The best times to water are in the morning or evening and remember to water the roots, not the leaves.
More energy saving tips
- Download saving energy and water around the home (PDF 250KB)
- Download our high energy bills factsheet (PDF 350KB)
More water saving tips
Water restrictions are now in place across most of NSW, so it's a great time to try and reduce your usage (and save money). Here are some resources that will help.
- Sydney Water offers water saving tips on their website. You can also get leaking taps fixed and water-saving showerheads installed through their WaterFix program.
- Hunter Water offers a water usage calculator on their website.
- Learn about the pensioner water rebate.
- Information on water efficiency from the Australian Government.
If you're having problems paying your energy or water bills, talk to your provider. There are rebates, loans and customer assistance programs available to help you. Providers are also offering additional support if you've been impacted by COVID-19.
Have a complaint about your energy or water provider?
We provide a free, fair and independent dispute resolution service for all electricity and gas customers in New South Wales, and some water customers. If you have a complaint with your energy or water provider - let them know. If you're not happy with their response, or you need advice, contact us.