Top 10 Tips to Save on Gas
With record numbers of Aussies now at home, the household budget has likely been a topic of discussion. For Australian households using a variety of gas appliances, all that extra time locked up has likely given a noticeable bump to your gas bill.
With an abundance of time on many of our hands, we explore the best ways to save on your gas costs that you can implement today. Thankfully, there are only two main areas of focus when it comes to tackling your gas usage.
Hot Water – The Household Energy Baron
Heating water is a large part of any household’s energy costs. The Australian government’s Your Home page states that heating water alone makes up 21% of the total energy costs for typical households.
Reducing the amount of water used around the house will have a direct impact on your gas bill. Some important areas to focus on are:
- Your Hot Water System
For over half of Australian households, gas is used to heat water. It will be no surprise that the condition, efficiency, and type of the hot water system will affect the gas cost on the other side. If you have an older hot water system, a smart investment may be in a new one.
There are two main types of hot water systems these days: Storage and Instantaneous. For many of us, storage tanks will be what we are used to. This is the tank that can run out of hot water.
Storage tanks require much more energy to run, compared to an instantaneous tank that only heats the water as it is used. If you have a storage tank installed, it would be a smart move to swap it out for an instantaneous one.
- Dishwashing Machines
Many modern dishwashing machines come with economic settings for you to take advantage of. These will wash your dishes at a lower temperature, and as a result, create less demand on your hot water system.
- Washing Machines
Washing machines, much like dishwashers, will often come with low-cost settings as well. However, anybody can save here by simply switching to washing your clothes in cold water. Any reduction in the amount of hot water used will have a direct impact on your gas bill.
- Bathroom Habits
If anybody in your household is used to taking baths, consider swapping to showers instead. Make sure to keep your showers to 10 minutes at the most, and fix any leaking taps or hoses you may have around the bathroom.
All of these factors will help reduce the heating demands from your daily bathroom visits.
- Water Efficiency
Any appliance that uses water will have water efficiency ratings stickered onto it. Keep a close eye on the efficiency ratings of new appliances you buy. It is not cost effective to run out and replace all of your appliances with more efficient models, instead do so as you naturally replace older appliances.
- Heat Loss
Hot water storage tanks will, on average, lose 30% of the heat they generate. Investing in a hot water system with low heat loss will help you save in the long run.
- Shower, Don’t Bathe
The biggest use of hot water in your house will be washing yourself. Bathes, compares to showers, use significantly more hot water. By switching to showers, and limiting them to 10 minutes, you’ll see a nice cut in your gas costs.
- Watch the Temperature
No matter where you use hot water in the household, look closely at the temperature you’re using. By lowering the temperature on a range of appliances and habits around the home, you will have a direct impact on your gas usage.
Cooking Smarter with Gas
With many of us stuck at home cooking for ourselves, the usage time on many of our gas stoves and ovens has increased exponentially. Making smarter choices with how we cook with gas can help to reduce your overall gas consumption.
- Cooking with Gas Ovens
When consulting many recipes, they will recommend you to heat up your oven before-hand. This is often only a valid recommendation for electric ovens, as with a naked flame, your oven will heat up very quickly.
Instead of following the preheating guide lines, simply heat up your oven 1 or 2 minutes before you put anything in it. This will cut down, in many cases, a quarter of the time your oven is turned on for any recipe.
It is also important to check the seals on your oven door, as a damaged seal can lead to heat loss, forcing the oven to work much harder to maintain the right temperature.
- Cooking with Gas Stoves
Make sure any of the pots you are using have lids that fit snug on the top. If a lid is loose, it can take longer to boil water, thus leading to more time heating the stove.
You can also make an economic choice when you cook, and turn off the heat a few minutes before you serve. The heat in your pan is unlikely to drop too much at the end of cooking something, and you’ll save a good chunk of time running a naked flame under the pan.
Start Saving on Your Gas Today
With these simple, round the household tips to guide your way, you are now well equipped to squeeze out some savings around the house.
If you want even more savings? Don’t forget to look around for a better deal on your gas. Depending on what you find, and what your current contract is, you could save a hefty sum on your quarterly gas bill!