Tips to save energy as we spend more time at home this winter

Published on
5 June 2020

Your household, like mine, is probably busier than ever. COVID-19 has forced many of us to convert our bedrooms, lounge rooms, studies, and even sheds into home offices and classrooms for our kids.

While it’s nice to be able to spend more quality time with the people we love, being at home longer, for whatever reason, often means using more electricity and/or gas which leads to higher energy bills.

That’s why Aurora is encouraging Tasmanians, like you and me, to start thinking about how we can use less energy while still keeping warm this winter.

Tasmanians have had some of the lowest regulated power costs in Australia for the last four years. But during our cold, dark winter months we use more energy as we turn on our heaters, use our clothes dryers more often, or spend an extra few minutes in a hot shower to beat the morning chill.

In fact, the average monthly energy consumption for Aurora’s customers during winter last year was 51 per cent higher than in the summer months. It’s a stark reminder of Tasmania’s cooler climate and why on average we consume more energy than our mainland counterparts.

Is the heater turned up too high? Are there cool draughts that need plugging up under doors and around windows? And more importantly, are we on the right energy plan? These are all questions we should be asking ourselves if we want to reduce our power costs this winter as we spend more time at home than ever before due to COVID-19 restrictions.

For these reasons Aurora has been focussing on giving all of us greater visibility of how and when we use electricity, through both aurora+ and the soon-to-be released online energy plan calculator.

Being aware of our power use may sound like a weird energy saving tip, but knowing when and how much energy we're using can help us save big, and Aurora has an app for that!

The new digital product aurora+ is available to any Tasmanian household who would like to better understand their energy costs and conveniently be able to manage them from the warmth of their home.

Being able to see your daily energy patterns is a powerful tool to help change your habits around the home. I know from having aurora+ at my family’s fingertips we are now far more conscious on how much power we are using and what we can do about it.

The online energy plan calculator, to be launched later this month, is free and lets you quickly work out what Aurora Energy plan is best for you.

Aurora knows that every Tasmanian home, family and lifestyle is different. This easy to use, interactive calculator helps you understand the plan that’s the most affordable for you based on your household and energy use behaviour.

Around the home, it’s the small things that can become big expenses when they’re all added up. The extra degree on a heater’s thermostat, extra minutes in a hot shower (I’m sure I’m not the only one with a teenager who loves long showers!) and the array of tiny standby lights silently sucking power.

Inefficient energy use is a key driver of high power bills, which is why Aurora also focus on helping customers become more energy efficient.

But Tasmanians do not have to sacrifice their winter comfort to use less power. It’s about being more conscious about the way we use energy – it’s the simple changes that can make a really big difference!

While seeing our energy usage, being on the right plan and making household changes can lower our power costs, I know that there are many Tasmanians doing it tough right now in these challenging circumstances. 

Aurora understands this as well and that is why they quickly established the $5M Customer Support Fund and continues to provide ways to support our community through COVID-19.

The $5M Aurora Support Fund is specifically designed to help customers impacted by the pandemic pay their energy bills. It is being used to waive fees and charges, freeze debt and help customers manage their ongoing consumption through subsidised payment plans.

No one knows how long we will be dealing with the impacts of COVID-19, but I know as a proud Tasmanian leading a team of fellow passionate Tasmanians, we are committed to doing what we can to assist everyone who call this remarkable island home.

If you’re in need of support this winter, call Aurora Energy on 1300 13 2003 weekdays or go to auroraenergy.com.au

Rebecca Kardos, CEO Aurora Energy