South Australians pay some of the highest electricity bills in the country3. The industry was deregulated in 2013 and there’s competition among energy suppliers in SA – many offer discounts during your first 12 months. If you live in SA, it’s important to compare against other plans every once in a while to make the most of the discounts offered on cheap electricity.
At the very least, the programmable thermostat could be set to ease back the throttle at night when no one is awake. That’s what we do at our house, since my wife is home with the kids all day. The thermostat is set to kick up to 80 or so overnight in the summer, then drop back down to a more normal temperature shortly before everyone is up for the day. Gives 6-8 hours a day at the more energy-saving temperature, without much of a sacrifice in comfort. And in the winter, everyone has more than enough blankets to keep warm without the furnace blasting constantly, so it’s even less of an inconvenience.
Are they going to increase their rates any time soon? Most suppliers keep their rate rises in line with the cost of living but have the ability to change rates with just 28 days notice. Some energy retailers may tell you that they don’t have a cap on their rate rises—if this is the case, then avoid these suppliers, as this signals that they could be looking at increasing their rates in the near future. Always look for affordable electricity options.
That assumes a lot of things, as another poster said. Here in dallas its never been lower than eighty at nite during our heat wave, and sometimes as high as nintely. There is no “opening up the house” So yes,. you certainly need air conditining in my part of the world. On the other hand, we live in the land of plentiful natural gas, so my heating bills are very minimal.
Short-term prices are impacted the most by weather. Demand due to heating in the winter and cooling in the summer are the main drivers for seasonal price spikes.[121] In 2017, the United States is scheduled to add 13 GW of natural-gas fired generation to its capacity. Additional natural-gas fired capacity is driving down the price of electricity, and increasing demand.
So in just 180.2 hours of use, I’ve made up for the cost of a bulb. Anything after that is pure savings compared to if I still had an incandescent bulb in its place. Sure, a hardly-used guest room might see limited use over its lifetime, so I still think your point has merit, but CFLs really should be considered for the majority of lightbulbs in the home.
With a product like TP-Link's smart plugs, you can easily turn anything that's plugged into them on or off with your smartphone, or better still, your voice. So the next time you're left wondering if you remembered to turn off the hallways light when you went to work or realized that you meant to unplug the coffee maker to save just a bit of energy (and money), you can both check and take action with the touch of a button.

The world's first public electricity supply was provided in late 1881, when the streets of the Surrey town of Godalming in the UK were lit with electric light. This system was powered from a water wheel on the River Wey, which drove a Siemens alternator that supplied a number of arc lamps within the town. This supply scheme also provided electricity to a number of shops and premises to light 34 incandescent Swan light bulbs.
I used this method, and with a programmable thermostat for my central air and heat, I was able to lower my bill to about $75. The only exception to this was I left my lamps plugged in. Everything else was unplugged as soon as I was done with it. Of course, I worked all day and no one was at home, either, but before I started, my bill ran around $125.
But this year is different. According to the Lower Colorado River Authority, a nonprofit public utility in Central Texas, the 10 months from October 2010 through July 2011 have been the driest for that period since 1895, when the state began keeping rainfall records. Without rain, temperatures hit record levels in June and July, which were the hottest months on record statewide. As of August 5, Austin hit 100+ degrees 52 times this summer.

The Entertainment system is the most energy sucking system I have; huge tv with several video game, music and DVD systems plugged in. These are plugged into a wall outlet that is controlled by a switch. When I’m leaving the room, the switch goes off and the power to the appliances are killed — the TV (while turned off) alone eats enough power to power my desktop computer.
To achieve a lower electric bill, start by finding out how much you pay for energy. Most utility companies start subscribers off at a base rate that can sometimes be very high. If you don't make much money, you may qualify for low-income subsidies, so you should ask your electric company about how to apply for them. You may also want to consider joining a time-of-use meter program, if available, which offers different energy rates depending on what time of day the power is used, with a substantial savings in off-peak hours. If you are disabled and you rely on life support equipment or need a very controlled temperature, you may qualify for monthly energy rebates.
On the other hand, month-to-month variable rate (no-contract) plans don’t have cancellation fees. You won’t be penalized if you find a better deal elsewhere and want to make another switch.  And, you won’t be stuck paying more than you should be if the market rate for electricity trends down.  But, if it goes up, you’ll be paying more than your in-contract neighbors, and you’ll likely want to shop around again for a better deal.
Texas has undoubtedly been the most successful US electricity deregulation market for residents. A lot of it’s success comes from the Texas Public Utility Commission’s (PUCT) marketing efforts when it launched PowerToChoose.org. Originally known as Texas Electric Choice, today’s Power To Choose site is still very popular for Texas residential electricity shopping, but it’s issues have also come under increasing scrutiny due to rate confusion and misleading electricity plans.
Most of the electricity plans listed above are variable rate plans, meaning the prices you are changed can change at the retailer’s discretion. Some energy providers also offer fixed rate plans, whereby you can lock in competitive prices now with the aim of saving in the long run. Fixed rate plans are usually only offered by the big three power companies. However, EnergyAustralia and AGL are currently the only retailers to offer NSW households a fixed rate deal with their Secure Saver and Essentials plans respectively. In this case, usage and supply rates are locked in for two years, which could prove a financially beneficial move in the long run.
These are all good (if not novel) tips, but I was disappointed the article immediately dismisses setting the thermostat at 80ºF as unreasonable. If you’re especially active, it might be a bit warm, but a big part of why a/c makes it more comfortable is simply that it’s drying out the air – which it’s doing if you have it set at 80 or 68. We keep ours at 80 all summer long, and with a ceiling fan on, it’s perfectly comfortable. We only dip down to a luxurious 76 when we’re doing a lot of heavy duty work in the house or we have guests.
I have a question on programable thermostats. We have one and have it set to be 6-10 degrees warmer when we are gone during the work days than when we are there. At what point do you lose your savings from not running the AC as much while you are out versus running it like crazy to resume the cooler temp when you are there? It seems like the AC works extra hard to get it cooled off- do we have the temp set too high while we are gone(maybe should only have 4-5 degrees warmer while we are at work)? Are we losing our efficiency?
If you're lucky enough to have a ceiling fan, running it in the correct direction makes this easy. When it's hot, the fan should spin counter-clockwise to push the hot air up and out. When the weather turns cold, instead spin the fans clockwise to trap heat inside. You'll often find a switch on your ceiling fan to choose a direction, so consult your fan's manual to find out where it is.
When washing clothes, run the spin cycle a second time. This makes sure all the excess water is out of the clothes. I’m not too worried about the allergens of of air-drying, but I don’t like the stiffness it creates. If you line-dry and then when they are done put them in the dryer for 10-15 mins, it softens them up. This would probably work with the allergens too.
Bill credits are helpful if your electricity usage stays within a very predictable range every month. That’s a tall order with the brutally hot Texas summers. Electricity providers offer bill credits on some of their plans and strategically place these bill credits in order to create an unusually low rate per kWh so that they rank higher on comparison shopping websites. Even though Power to Choose gives you the ability to filter out plans with bill credits, they still exist.
So in just 180.2 hours of use, I’ve made up for the cost of a bulb. Anything after that is pure savings compared to if I still had an incandescent bulb in its place. Sure, a hardly-used guest room might see limited use over its lifetime, so I still think your point has merit, but CFLs really should be considered for the majority of lightbulbs in the home.

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Use heat-generating appliances at night. I know this should be a no-brainer, but I like to bake, and because I work at home, I can bake whenever the mood strikes. But obviously a hot oven in the heat of the day forces the AC to work harder to keep the house at a comfortable temperature. The same goes for clothes dryers and dishwashers. Use these at night when outside temps are cooler.
We save money — we’re in the mid-Atlantic– by only airconditioning one or two rooms and using fans in the rest. A side effect is that when you’ve spent most of your time outside air conditioning, you can tolerate higher AC-less temps (assuming you’re reasonably healthy). The more AC you give yourself, the more you need. That also encourages us to use outdoor line drying and run heat-producing appliances at night. :)
Utility companies are responsible for transmission and delivery of electricity even in energy deregulated parts of Texas and should be contacted in the event of a power outage. Your retail energy supplier may provide you competitive electric rates or exceptional customer service, but they cannot repair power lines or restore your service. In the case of an emergency, contact:
At the very least, the programmable thermostat could be set to ease back the throttle at night when no one is awake. That’s what we do at our house, since my wife is home with the kids all day. The thermostat is set to kick up to 80 or so overnight in the summer, then drop back down to a more normal temperature shortly before everyone is up for the day. Gives 6-8 hours a day at the more energy-saving temperature, without much of a sacrifice in comfort. And in the winter, everyone has more than enough blankets to keep warm without the furnace blasting constantly, so it’s even less of an inconvenience.

P.S. one thing we do with line drying might work to reduce regular allergen accumulation and some lint buildup: sometimes we’ll line dry heavy clothes, such as jeans and towels, to damp, then finish them in the dryer. I do know it takes off a lot of lint when I do that. My brother dries a lot of his uniform clothes indoors, on hangers in the bathroom, and has had good luck with that.
Many people are aware that Iceland has the cleanest energy in the world by far. The island-nation generates 100% of its electricity from renewables such as hydroelectric and geothermal sources, and it’s also flirting with wind power. What those same people might not realize, however, is that this results in some of the cheapest electricity in the world.

It's important to make sure the walls and windows of your home aren't leaking air. Just like your refrigerator shouldn't be left open to cool the whole kitchen, your house shouldn't be cooling the yard. Buy a cheap roll of weatherstripping tape, and seal up those doors and windows. Also, make sure to clean the filters on your air conditioning vents at least once a month — this will help your air conditioning be more efficient.


Purchase energy efficient appliances: If you’re in the market for a new washer, dishwasher or water heater, buy an energy efficient model to yield long-term savings. A dishwasher with the Energy Star label is required to use 5.8 gallons of water or less per cycle, compared to the more than 10 gallons used by some older models.  Prioritize appliances that run most often, like the fridge, HVAC system, water heater, dehumidifier, television, washer and dryer.
Although electricity prices in the aren't cheap some countries have it much worse. In this article I'm going compare internationally to look at who is paying more $/kWh for their energy. I’ve gathered some numbers and crunched a little data to see who is really paying a lot for their power. For my neighbour here in the USA I’ll add a bit more data at the end.
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