“Be energy efficient with these energy saving ... - Essential Energy


“Be energy efficient with these energy saving ... - Essential Energy

“Be energy efficient

with these energy saving

ideas from your

energyanswers team.”


efficiency tips

Today, more than

ever, we all need to be

aware of the energy we

use, how much it costs

and the impact on the


To help you be energy

efficient at home, we’ve

asked some of our

energyanswers team

to share their top tips.

We’ve got the

answers to your

energy questions

Remember, the energyanswers team are here

to help you with:

> energy efficiency advice

> a personalised over-the-phone energy audit

for your home

> information about switching to solar and the

available Government rebates

> details about Federal and State Government

energy efficiency programs and incentives.

Call the energyanswers

team on 1800 ENERGY

(1800 363 749)


Lasts between 6000 & 15000 hours

Casting a new

light on energy

efficient bulbs

Lasts around 1000 hours

Can changing a light bulb change the world? We’d

like to think so. Compact fluorescent light bulbs

(CFLs) may use up to 80% † less energy and last

significantly longer than traditional incandescent

bulbs – in some cases as long as 25 to 30 years.

To help you decide which bulb is best for your needs,

we’ve put together this overview of some of the

options now available. We recommend that you trial

some of the options before you change every light

bulb in your home.

Replace these:








With these:

CFL equivalent

9 – 13W

13 – 15W

18 – 25W

23 – 30W

30 – 52W

Governments globally

are moving to phase out

incandescent bulbs. It’s

easy to see why when up

to 90% of the energy is

wasted in heat generation.



The days of flickering,

dull and ill-fitting CFLs

are long gone. Today, you

can choose from a variety

of sizes, shapes and

brightness, suitable for

every light in your home.

4 5

Which bulb


Spiral CFL

Spiral bulbs are one of the most

popular choices in CFLs. They can

easily replace many household bulbs

and are available in both Edison screw

and bayonet fittings. They also come

in a range of tones including daylight,

cool white and warm white.

Tube CFL

Tube CFLs spread light differently from

spiral bulbs. They are available in a

number of sizes and fittings, and offer

varying brightness and tones, making

them suitable for a wide range of

fittings and lamps.

Covered CFL

Covered CFLs look similar to traditional

bulbs so they’re especially suited for

light fittings where the bulbs are visible.

Compact CFL

CFLs are now available in a selection

of compact sizes for smaller lamps,

wall lights and chandeliers.

Reflector CFL

Reflector CFLs are ideal for recessed

ceiling lights or fittings that provide

directional light.

T5 Fluorescent Tube

T5s are an ideal replacement for

traditional T8 fluorescent tubes, as

they use about 50% less energy.

Special kits are available to adapt

T5s to your existing light fitting,

however you may need to replace

the fitting as well to achieve the

best efficiency.

Dimmable CFL

CFLs also come in a range of specially

designed dimmable bulbs.

6 7


The new generation of Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs)

offer low voltage, low heat and high lighting output.

They are slightly more expensive than CFLs, however

they use less energy than traditional bulbs and may

last up to 30 years.


With a similar look to traditional bulbs,

LEDs come in a range of sizes, tones

and fittings including clear or opaque

tones, and screw or bayonet fittings.

LED Downlight

LED downlights are an energy efficient

alternative to halogen lights and are

available in a range of styles and tones.

15.5W LEDs are a good replacement

for 50W halogen bulbs. LED downlights

can also be dimmed with the right

dimmer switch and transformer.

“LEDs use less energy and may

last up to 30 years. That’s

great for the environment...

and your own energy usage too.”


Essential Energy


Small scale



More and more people are looking to the sun for

renewable energy and cost saving solutions. Solar

photovoltaic (PV) systems – also known as solar

PV panels – are the most popular renewable energy

systems as they are the least expensive and can

work efficiently in most locations.

Solar panels are usually placed in a north facing

direction, angled to maximise exposure to the sun.

A grid-connected inverter converts electricity from the

panels to mains power electricity – from DC to AC.

Net metering allows for the electricity produced by a

solar system to first be used to supply your home or

business. When more electricity is produced than

needed, it can be fed back into the network. The saving

shows up on your bill as both a lower use of electricity

and an export credit at your feed-in tariff rate.

Gross metering describes a metering arrangement

where all solar electricity generated is fed into the

electricity network – your bill is then credited for the

exported amount at the relevant feed-in tariff rate.

Is solar a solution for you?

It’s important to do your homework on the type and size

of system that will best suit your property and budget,

and the metering options – net or gross – that are

available. You should then contact your energy retailer

to find out the availability and type of feed-in tariffs.

Essential Energy will provide your chosen Accredited

Service Provider (ASP) with a net or gross meter at no

cost, however the costs associated with installation

are your responsibility. Before committing to installing

your system, please discuss these costs and any other

electrical works required with your ASP.

To connect a renewable energy system such as

domestic solar panels or wind turbines to Essential

Energy’s network:

Download Essential Energy’s Grid

Connect Application from our website


Complete the Application with your

accredited solar installer and submit to us.

A list of accredited installers can be found

on the Clean Energy Council website at


Receive a Grid Connect approval letter from

Essential Energy.

Liaise with your accredited installer and

have your system installed.

Contact an Accredited Service Provider

(ASP) to arrange for the installation of a new

meter. To find an ASP in your local area visit

the Trade & Investment NSW website at


For more information about renewable energy

and connecting to Essential Energy’s network call

the energyanswers team on 1800 ENERGY

(1800 363 749)

10 11

Cool ideas

for heating


Heating and cooling your home can be the biggest

contributor to your energy use. The following ideas

can improve your energy efficiency and help to reduce

greenhouse gas emissions too.

The most energy efficient choice for heating

large areas is a gas heater or a reverse cycle

air conditioner.

Space heaters are usually more efficient than

central heating as you are only heating one

room, not the whole house.

Up to 70% of heat can be lost through ceilings

and walls and up to 10% through elevated

floors. Insulating your home can help to

reduce your energy use and increase the

temperature by up to seven degrees in winter.

Up to 10% of heat is lost through windows.

Hang close-fitting, heavy curtains (preferably

with pelmets) to make a significant difference.

Draughts can also put the heat on your energy

use – by as much as 25%. Seal gaps around

your doors to help you keep cosy and be

more energy efficient.

“A single degree in temperature

can make a big difference to your

energy use, so the first step to

becoming more energy efficient is to

make sure you’re not overheating

or overcooling your house.”

The optimum winter temperature inside a

home is between 18 and 20 degrees, every

degree higher can increase your energy use.

Use a ceiling fan even in winter to keep your

room at optimum temperature by pushing rising

hot air back down into the room.

On sunny days, open curtains on north-facing

windows to let the sunshine in – inviting free

heat into your home.


Essential Energy


Hot ideas for

staying cool

On hot days, keep windows and doors

closed and blinds and curtains drawn to help

keep heat out. In the evenings, open windows

and doors, on opposite sides of the house if

possible, for a cooling cross-breeze.

Shade your windows, particularly those

facing east and west. This can dramatically

reduce the amount of heat entering your

home, by as much as 80%. Consider awnings,

external blinds and trees or shrubs to provide

shade. If you’re building a new home, consider

deep eaves or verandahs.

Read your stars – check energy efficiency star

ratings before you purchase an air conditioner,

heater or any other appliance. The more stars

it has, the greater its energy efficiency – four

to six-star ratings are best.

The optimum summer temperature inside a

home is between 23 and 26 degrees. Every

degree lower can have a big effect on your

energy use.

Insulation not only helps you to stay warm

and more energy efficient in winter – it can

potentially keep your home up to 10 degrees

cooler in summer too.

If you use an air conditioner, clean the air

filters regularly and ensure that outside units

are free from obstructions to help them run

at their most efficient.

“Most ceiling fans only

use about as much energy

as a light bulb., so they ’re

economical to run. ”


Essential Energy


Don’t get into

hot water with

your hot water

Hot water accounts for up to 30% of your energy use.

Electric hot water systems, in particular, are energy

intensive – a typical system can produce the same

amount of greenhouse gas emissions as running a car

for an entire year. While no one wants to compromise

their comfort, there are some simple ways to reduce

both your energy and water use.

Solar isn’t your only option for greener, more

efficient hot water – you might also want to

consider a heat-pump system.

Replace your electric hot water system with

a five-star or higher energy-rated natural gas

hot water system.

Reducing your water use may also reduce

your energy use. A three-star rated efficient

showerhead can reduce your hot water usage

by as much as 50%, without compromising

the quality of your shower.

A dripping hot water tap can potentially waste

thousands of litres of water. Fix the drip and

you’ll be saving both water and energy.

Insulate exposed pipes if your hot water

system is located outside.

“Just by choosing a cold wash

over a warm or hot wash you could

use up to 90% less energy.”

If you are designing or building a new home or

extension, ensure that the hot water system is

positioned as close to the bathroom, laundry

and kitchen as possible.

When using a mixer tap, be sure to have

it turned all the way to the cold side if you

require cold water only. If it is in the warm

position it will still deliver hot water.


Essential Energy



cooking in your


Feeding the family can take a lot of energy, in more

ways than one. Here are some practical ways you can

trim your energy use in the kitchen.

Keep your freezer frost-free. Put a reminder

on your calendar to de-frost your freezer every

six months or whenever the frost build-up

reaches 5mm.

Fan-forced ovens can use up to 35% less

energy than conventional ovens because

they heat more quickly and can cook food

at lower temperatures.

Microwave ovens are highly energy efficient

using up to 70% less than an electric

convection oven.

Consider switching to natural gas for cooking,

it’s generally considered to be the most

energy efficient option.

Make sure seals are tight in both your oven

and your fridge to help them run efficiently.

Test seals by placing a piece of paper in the

door, which should hold firm when closed.

Use the right size pot for the job. Smaller pots

take less energy to heat. Use lids on pots and

cook on simmer, not boil. And if you’re only

using a small pan, use a smaller hotplate.

Check your fridge temperature settings.

The optimum running temperatures for energy

efficiency and food safety is between three

and four degrees for your fridge and between

-15 and -18 degrees for your freezer.

Only boil the amount of water that you need

when you’re making a cup of tea. Boiling a

full kettle wastes energy.

“Only boil the amount of water

that you need when you’re making

a cup of tea. Boiling a full kettle

wastes energy.”


Essential Energy


Could you benefit

from Time of Use?

Most people pay a flat rate for their electricity,

known as a ‘continuous supply tariff’. With Time of

Use (TOU) pricing, higher rates are charged during

the Peak and Shoulder periods, and a cheaper rate

is charged during the Off Peak period.


7am - 9am and

5pm - 8pm, Monday to Friday


9am - 5pm and

8pm - 10pm, Monday to Friday

Off Peak

10pm - 7am, Monday to Friday, and

10pm Friday - 7am Monday

Time of Use suits customers who can control their

energy use to take advantage of lower prices at specific

times of the day or night. To benefit from Time of Use

rates, you will need a digital Time of Use meter.

To find out whether you would benefit

from changing to Time of Use, contact the

energyanswers team on 1800 ENERGY

(1800 363 749)

Say yes to an

energy audit

This checklist can help identify some areas where

your energy efficiency may be improved. If you answer

‘no’ to any of these questions, you could benefit from

one of our over-the-phone energy audits.

Do you use an energy-efficient ENERGY STAR®

labelled refrigerator, washer or other appliance?

Do you only use one refrigerator?

Do your refrigerator and freezer have enough

room for air ventilation?

Have you checked if the seals on your refrigerator

or freezer need replacing?

Do you operate your dishwasher with full loads?

Do you dry your washing on the clothes line?

Do you regularly wash clothes in cold water?

Do you use a microwave for reheating and cooking

small quantities of food?

Have you replaced your incandescent bulbs with

compact fluorescent bulbs?

Do you ensure that you don’t overcool your home

in summer or overheat it in winter?


Have you draught-proofed your home?

Do you set your air conditioner to 18-20 degrees

in winter and 23-26 degrees in summer?

Have you installed energy-saving showerheads,

taps or flow restrictors?

20 21

Government and

community payment


The energyanswers team can help with information

about Government and community support that may

be available to you, including:

> Low Income Household Rebate of $200 * per year

Available to all electricity account holders issued

with an eligible card by Centrelink or the Department

of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA), including Centrelink Health

Care Card, Centrelink Pension Concession Card, DVA

Disability Pension Gold Card, DVA Extreme Disability

Adjustment Gold Card, DVA Pension Card, DVA War

Widows/Widowers Pension Gold Card.

> Medical Energy Rebate of $200 * per year

> Life Support Rebates

> Energy Accounts Payment Assistance (EAPA) scheme

This operates through a voucher system, with each

voucher worth $30 * . EAPA vouchers are issued by a

participating community welfare organisation such

as St Vincent de Paul, Salvation Army and Anglicare.

If you hold an eligible card and have not yet

registered for a Government rebate, you should

contact your nominated energy retailer.

Things you should know: † Information sourced from NECA at

ecosmartelectricians.com.au * Figures correct as at June 2011.

The information contained in this document has come from sources

believed to be reliable and accurate when printed. However, the

information is provided solely on the basis that readers will be

responsible for making their own assessment of the accuracy of the

information. For further details on the sources used, please visit


22 23

We’re here

to help

Essential Service Centres


621 Dean Street


90 Market Street

Batemans Bay

Shop 7

Bay Centre Plaza

Orient Street



George Street



Carp Street

Broken Hill

160 Beryl Street

Coffs Harbour*

102 Thompsons



138 Sharp Street


40 Grenfell Road


26 Napier Street


168 Macquarie



91 Lachlan Street


16 Breese Parade


148 Auburn Street


17 Prince Street


310 Banna Avenue


102 Herbert Street


81 Lachlan Street


19 Pine Avenue



Molesworth Street


223 Balo Street


210 Araluen Road


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1 Logan Street


113 East Street


157 Oberon Street


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Cnr Church and

Clarinda Streets

Port Macquarie

140 Lake Road


Electra Street


Whitbread Street


Forbes Street

Tweed Heads

39 Sunshine


Wagga Wagga

2/209 Baylis Street


24–26 Darling



53 Boorowa Street

*Payment facilities


Call the energyanswers team on

1800 ENERGY (1800 363 749) or visit us at


For general enquiries call 13 23 91

For supply interruptions call 13 20 80

For interpreter services call 13 14 50

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