It’s that time of year again! The sun is shining, the birds are chirping and we’re all set for new beginnings. Part of welcoming in the new season includes a classic spring clean. Popping away blankets, giving the house a good dust, and developing better habits to take us forward. So, why not extend the ritual to boosting your home’s energy efficiency?
Here are our top tips to get you started.
Get smart with gadgets
There are heaps of nifty gadgets around these days to help you manage appliances and save energy. Invest in smart plugs to schedule devices to turn on and off or consider a thermostat to help you maintain a comfortable room temperature.
Spike member tip: Did you know you can enrol compatible smart devices – such as the TP Link Smart Plug – into Spike? It’s a handy way of ensuring energy-hungry appliances are automatically switched off during a SpikeHour. If you don’t have a smart plug, check out the range at member discounted prices in the Spike Store today.
Turn off home office equipment after work
Standby power can cost households up to $100 a year – and the home office can be a major culprit. Make sure you switch off computers, monitors, scanners, printers and other gizmos in the office after you clock off each day to minimise wasted energy and associated emissions.
Spike member tip: Need to work during SpikeHour? Use a pre-charged laptop instead of the desktop computer to reduce your energy consumption.
Download monitoring apps
Energy efficiency apps can be a great tool to help you develop better habits and get more control over your bills. For example, the ‘My usage’ function in My Account (and the Origin app) can give you a clear view of when you use the most energy so you can adjust your energy habits.
Spike member tip: Keep an eye on rising temperatures using weather apps. You can save energy during SpikeHours by cooling your home before the temperature increases, so your AC doesn’t need to work as hard during times of peak demand.
Replace outdated appliances
Sometimes holding on to old appliances can mean holding on to higher energy bills. Over the years, more attention has gone into creating appliances that are more eco-friendly and energy efficient. Fridges for example now use 40% less energy than they did 15 years ago! If you’re looking to buy new white goods or electronics, be sure to compare Energy Rating labels. The more stars, the more efficient the model.
Spike member tip: If a SpikeHour is coming up after dinner, avoid placing hot leftovers in the fridge right away – it only makes your fridge work harder. Instead, let the food cool first before putting it away. Want to take it up a notch? Turn off your fridge for the duration of your SpikeHour to save even more energy! (If you keep the door shut, everything will stay cold).
Draught proof your home
Keep your home cooler in the warmer months, and cosy during cooler seasons, by identifying and sealing draughts. This involves checking for gaps near windows, skirting boards, chimneys and doorways. Start your search for gaps and cracks by listening for rattles and whistling sounds around doors, feeling for cool air above skirting boards, or looking for movement in curtains.
Spike member tip: Make quick adjustments by purchasing or making a door snake, using weather strips on windows, and installing vent caps over evaporative cooling units.
Only wash with a full load
Scarves, beanies, blankets and throws will need a good wash after a high-rotation winter. Wasted space in the washing machine is wasted energy, so make the most of the cycle by loading the machine to its specified and safe maximum.
Spike member tip: With sunny days on the horizon, let clothes air dry naturally outside instead of using the dryer during a SpikeHour.