New Zealand power prices have been steadily rising over the years, jumping from 21.4c per kWh in 2004 to 28.8c in 2017. Kiwis also face unique challenges when it comes to surcharge pricing during dry times of the year as around 60 per cent of electricity is generated by hydro lakes.
While the Labour government is set to conduct a full-scale review into retail power pricing as part of their coalition deal with NZ First, there are ways consumers can help curb the impact of rising electricity cost at home.
Switch Off Appliances
Appliances like TVs, DVD players, game consoles and computers sitting on standby account for up to 10 per cent of power bills. Use less energy and save on bills by switching these off at the wall. Using a power board makes this easy.
Get Smart with Your Washing
Only wash full loads in your dishwasher and washing machine and use the shortest or economy cycles where possible. Use cold water wash cycles on your washing machine or reduce the amount of hot water you use. If you have a dryer, avoid using it and hang up washing whenever it’s possible.
You can also reduce power by lowering the temperature of hot water in the shower or bath, something many people tend to have set very high. The water can still be comfortably warm when set around 50 degrees.
Use the Sun
When it’s colder, use the sun as a natural heater. Open curtains on your north-facing windows during the afternoon to heat your home with sunlight and close them to lock in the warmth at night.
Every year, lines companies around New Zealand review their prices at the start of April, often leading to retailers hiking prices as well. Rather than just accepting the rate you’re given, compare what other providers are offering. If you’re unsatisfied with your retailer, it’s easier than ever to switch.
Some retailers also offer discounts to their standard rates. However, keep in mind these rates often only apply to usage charges and not service charges (cost of getting energy to your house). These discounts also tend to require meeting certain requirements such as paying every bill on time. If you’re not sure you can meet these, steer clear as you may end up paying top rates for your energy.
Make sure every light bulb in your property is an energy-saving model, as they make an enormous difference to your energy consumption and overall power bill. If you only need lighting in specific places, use lamps instead of ceiling lights as they use less energy.
Use Efficient Heating and Cooling Systems
Invest in energy efficient heating and cooling systems to reduce your power bill all year round. Heat pumps use external heat and cold to effectively regulate the temperature of your home without using too much energy, making them the most cost-effective solution available.
Need Advice About Heating and Cooling in Auckland?
If you’d like more information about how heat pumps can help you reduce your power bills, speak to the friendly experts at Albany Heat Pumps. We’ll help you determine the best solution for your property and provide installation and maintenance services if you need. Contact us online today.