How to Save Energy and Reduce Bills During COVID-19
The global pandemic has forced millions of people to work from home and for many of us, including our team here at Voltfix, are seeing increases in all of our utility bills. A lot of us are looking at ways to reduce and save energy during this time and to ensure our cost of living is as low as possible.
In this blog, we have put together some useful tips for those who are looking to reduce that bill shock as much as possible.
If you are unable to pay your electricity bills, you can contact your utility company to figure out a payment solution. Electric companies have hardship policies that may give some leverage to consumers in times of crisis. It will help you reach an agreement to allow for delayed payments or paying off bills in installments. Even if the worst was to happen, due to protections provided by governments in the COVID-19 emergency, it is highly unlikely that your electricity will be disconnected due to non-payment.
That aside, here are some ways you can conserve energy and manage your bills during this time of crisis:
Since working from home implies increased usage of computers, increasing the electricity bill, you can take some steps to save energy:
- Change monitor settings to switch off automatically after 10 minutes of inactivity
- Lower screen brightness to reduce energy consumption
- Switch off Wi-Fi and Bluetooth if it is not in use
- Close applications that are not in use
- Choose screensavers that are not active or animated as it requires more energy
- Remove all devices connected to the laptop, when not in use (for example, USB devices, mouse, keyboard, speakers, flash drives, etc.)
- Shut down your computer when it is not in use
- When purchasing computers, check the Energy Rating Label to evaluate how much energy it consumes.
- Laptops are generally less energy-consuming than desktop computers because they can work for extended periods on a battery.
- Do not leave your phone on charge overnight. It not only damages the phone battery but also consumes a lot of energy.
- Conserve phone battery by reducing brightness.
- Avoid animated screensavers as it drains the battery quickly.
- Switch off Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and GPS when not in use.
- When you are not using your phone, you can switch to Airplane mode to conserve battery.
- Change the phone settings, so the screen turns off automatically with 30 seconds of inactivity to conserve battery.
- Close applications that are not in use.
- Delete unwanted applications as it drains power.
- Change your notification alerts to update at 30 minutes or longer intervals.
According to Canstar Blue, “A standard air conditioner’s temperature should be set to 25 to 27 degrees for cooling in summer, and around 18 to 20 degrees for heating in winter. This is to ensure maximum energy efficiency from your unit. Keep in mind that these temperatures assume you live in a moderate climate, but as we all know, Australia is a land of many climates.”
Remember, the harder your air conditioner has to work, the more electricity it will consume. It is estimated that every one degree cooler in summer adds around 10% to the amount of electricity use.
The Queensland Government currently has grants and interest free loans available for people to install solar systems in their homes. If you own your own home this may be a great time to take advantage and add value to your property.
As we all work together in these unprecedented times, we are all looking at ways to reduce our costs and create more sustainable working arrangements. If you’d like to discuss power reduction strategies further, discuss solar options or if you have an electrical emergency or need assistance, you can contact Voltfix Electrical at 1300 500 832.