Watt a difference small changes can make

Making small changes to how you use energy can reduce greenhouse emissions and save you heaps.

Green Home Guide: Green Power

Green Home Guide: Green Power
Photographer: Stuart Humphreys © Australian Museum

Switch to GreenPower

Switching to green energy is easy. Almost all electricity companies offer the choice of GreenPower, so just contact your energy supplier and ask for it. It can cost as little as an extra $5 per week on average. However, you can minimize this extra cost by adopting energy-saving habits.

Turn off lights

Turn lights off in rooms when you are not there. Change your old incandescent light bulbs for energy saving bulbs and swap your porch and garden lights for solar lights.

Shut it off at the wall

Don't leave things on standby. Shut off computers, entertainment devices and small appliances at the power point when not in use.

Check the fridge

You don't need a new fridge to cut energy use. Adjust the settings (4 to 5oC for the fridge and -15 to -18oC for the freezer) and make sure the door closes and seals properly.

Have an old second fridge that you don't need? Get rid of it for free. Visit fridgebuyback.com.au

The wind in your clothes

Use a clothesline or drying rack to dry your clothes, rather than a dryer. They will smell fresher and save power.

Get out of hot water

Heating water uses a lot of energy. Turn down the thermostat on your hot water system (no lower than 60oC). Use cold water when washing your clothes, take shorter showers and turn off the water system before leaving on your next holiday. Consider installing a solar hot water system—you'll save money in the long run.

Temperature control

Don't over-cool or over-heat your home. Use a programmable thermostat - you can set it so that it only cools or heats during times when you are at home. Wear warm clothes in the winter and open windows to create draughts in the summer.

Green renos

If you're doing renovations, consider some green improvements. Draught-proof your home, install energy efficient windows, insulate the roof, walls and floor, and add solar panels or a solar water heater.

Reach for the stars

Next time you're looking to buy an appliance, check the star rating: The more stars, the more energy you will save.

energy rating

Find out how much energy your household uses, then commit to making changes to reduce your consumption. Visit the Australian Museum website to get your household energy log: australianmuseum.net.au/Museum-2-You

Russ Weakley , Web Designer
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