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There are lots of ways you can make your home cheaper to run and more comfortable in summer. Consider the options below, or book a Scorecard assessment to receive tailored information from one of our expert assessors.
Quick tips for saving on your cooling bills
- Keep doors closed between the hotter and cooler parts of your home, and spend as much time as possible in the cooler parts. Your Scorecard assessor can help you identify which parts of your house are easiest to keep cool.
- Keep the sun off windows and west facing walls.
- Use fans before turning on the air conditioning as fans are cheaper to run. Keep the fans running once the air conditioning is on.
- When it’s cooler outside than inside, open windows and doors – this will usually be at night or early in the morning before a hot day. Use an indoor/ outdoor thermometer to check when it is time to open the house.
- Avoid using the oven on hot days – have a barbecue outside if you can or use the microwave.
- Clothes dryers can pump a lot of hot air into a room, so dry clothes in the sun.
- Halogen lights also generate heat, so switch them off (and replace them with LEDs when you can).
- Only cool the room you’re in, not the whole house, to keep energy use down.
- Clean the air conditioner filters regularly to improve efficiency.
- If you have a ducted cooling system that is more than 10 years old it can be good to have the ducts checked to ensure they aren't leaking cool air.
- If you’re buying a new cooling device, look for one with lots of stars – it will be more energy efficient and cost less to run.
Did you know?
Depending on the climate zone, cooling can account for 20% to 50% of energy used in Australian homes.
Reverse-cycle air conditioners (single room)
Reverse-cycle air conditioners are efficient coolers – with the added bonus they can also be used as a heater in winter.
When purchasing, look for an appliance with 4 stars or more. See energyrating.gov.au for a list of models and ratings.
Reverse-cycle ducted air conditioner
Large air conditioning modules can be installed centrally to provide ducted cooling. They have the same disadvantage as ducted heating, in that you will lose cooled air from the ducts, and your system may not easily allow zoning to occur within the house.
Evaporative coolers provide cooling using the evaporation of water rather than a refrigeration process. These can be single room units or a central system.
They can use much less energy than typical air conditioners, but they do use water. They are also less effective in humid weather and require windows or doors to be left open to allow air flow.
Evaporative systems don’t fall under the star rating system for appliances but are generally very efficient to run.
Would you like to receive information and recommendations tailored to your home?
Scorecard can help with hot weather
Page last updated: 11/12/23