Every state in Australia has individual distribution networks, laws and other factors determining electricity costs. South Australia has the highest cost of power while Victoria and South-East Queensland have the lowest prices.
The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) sets the recommended price or the highest price they consider fair to consumers. However, energy providers have permission to adjust the prices at any time, provided they issue you a 5-day notice.
Let’s explore the energy costs and helpful tips to help you secure the best price and energy plan.
Electricity Usage: Where Exactly Is Your Power Going?
In general, most of a household’s power consumption goes to heating and cooling the home. This includes air conditioning, gas and electric heating.
In an average Australian home, the power breakdown is as follows:
- Heating and cooling consume about 40% of the total power
- Water heating consumes about 23%
- Main appliances such as laundry and entertainment consume 14%
- Freezers and fridges use up approximately 8%
- Lighting takes up 7%
- Cooking consumes 5%
- Standby power is 3%
What Affects the Average Energy Bill?
Several factors affect the average power bill. They include:
● Electricity Prices
Another major determinant of the average power bill is the price you pay for electricity. If you have a good energy plan with sharp rates, naturally, you’ll pay lower power bills than similar households with higher rates.
A tariff refers to the price every household pays for the electricity it uses. Tariffs vary depending on factors such as:
- The type of meter in use
- The energy provider
- The home’s wiring system
For instance, your neighbour may have a time-of-use tariff while you have a single rate tariff. In this case, your neighbour pays one price for power usage, regardless of the time of day when they use the power.
On the other hand, you pay different amounts for various times of the day or night. The price depends on the peak and off-peak durations.
● External Factors
There are other factors beyond your control that affect your electricity bills. They are such as:
- Retailer administration fees
- Network and metering charges
- General energy production costs
- Electricity transmission costs
Tips for Reducing Your Bills
1. Switch Off Standby Mode
Turning off the standby mode in appliances is an excellent way to reduce energy consumption. You can turn off most devices at the plug or socket without interfering with the settings or programming.
However, some appliances like digital and satellite TV recorders need to stay connected to retain the program memory.
If you have many family members, there’s a high chance someone will forget to turn off lights when leaving a room.
You can overcome this huddle by installing smart or motion-detector lights. They’ll automatically turn off when there’s no movement in the room.
2. Draught-proof Your Doors and Windows
Most homes lose some heat due to draughts coming in through the chimney, gaps in the flooring and spaces around the doors and windows. The amount increases as the home ages, so you should consider draft-proofing it unless your home is new.
3. Install Solar Lighting Outdoors
Rather than running outdoor lights on electricity, it would be best if you considered switching to solar lamps. They are cost-effective since they automatically recharge during the day. You can even select motion-sensor solar lights that will last longer.
The average power bills in Canberra are higher than in other locations in Australia. Having an energy-efficient home is an excellent way to manage your power bills. You’ll use less power without sacrificing your comfort.
If you’re experiencing financial challenges, ask your provider about hardship allowances and payment plans. You can also take advantage of Government-supported programs to be eligible for assistance and discounts.